There are multiple ways of getting to the main 3 towns of the Hambantota district. It all depends on where you come from, what your budget is, and how much time you have. So strap in and start planning with us.
The distance from Colombo to Hambantota is only 238km, a quick 4.5 hour ride away thanks to the highway that stretches from Colombo to Matara. From Matara it’s all local roads. The most comfortable way of getting to Hambantota is through hired car, but if you’re on a tighter budget, you can still have a comfortable ride by taking a highway AC bus. The Colombo – Kataragama bus stops in Hambantota and Tissa, and departs 3 times a day. You can book tickets in advance on this website to reserve a seat. If your budget is a little tighter, though, you can always take the local buses to Tangalle, Hambantota, and Tissa. It takes a little longer but hey, it’s the local experience! Opt to take the daily Colombo – Kataragama bus; it’s slightly faster with less stops along the way.
Hired car is always the fasted and most comfortable option, but convenience always comes with a higher sticker tag. There are no AC buses running from Ella to the Deep South, but if you’re staying in Hambantota town, there’s a direct bus that only takes 3 hours. You may need to switch buses from Hambantota town to Tangalle or Tissamaharama, but they’re both only an hour away.
Getting from Matara to Tangalle, Hambantota, or Tissamaharama is an easy local bus away! Matara is a big hub within the south, so navigation is pretty straightforward. There are dozens of buses that go from Matara to Tangalle, but we recommend taking the longer routes since the buses are faster with less stops. Taking the Matara – Tissamaharama or Matara – Kataragama buses will directly take you to Tangalle, Hambantota, and Tissamaharama!