Travel out of the hills and on to the sandy beaches of Arugam Bay in the south-east of Sri Lanka. Arugam Bay is famously known as one of ten top surf spots in the world. The relatively isolated beaches and a simple, laid-back lifestyle away from the main tourist haunts have many devotees. The best time for surfing in Arugam Bay is in July and August when the swells are high, but it is not all about the sun and surf on the South East Coast. Trek to the ancient Kudimbigala Forest Hermitage which is spread over about 4,700 hectares of wilderness. Trek uphill over huge rock boulders, thick forest cover, past ancient meditation caves and temple ruins. Once you reach the peak, visit the small temple and take in the breath-taking views across the Eastern shore. Explore the jungles of Kumana Bird Sanctuary. The swamp lakes of Kumana are nesting sites for water birds. During the nesting season, which begins in June, large colonies of pelican, spoonbills, herons, painted storks, and egrets can be spotted. The jungles are also home to wild elephants, buffalo and deer. Kumana is edged by the Indian Ocean and often the endangered marine turtles come ashore to nest on the secluded beaches. Best time to visit is at dawn and late afternoon when the animals are easily spotted. A guide can be hired at the entrance gates.