Coral reef | Sunday Observer

Coral reef

Hikkaduwa coral reef is a typical shallow fringing reef with an average depth of around 5 metres (16 ft). The coral reef reduces coastal erosion and forms a natural breakwater.The coast of the national park extends four km. Generally the coast is narrow, ranging from 5–50 m according to the climatic conditions of the year. Scuba diving is a popular recreation here.

With its popularity Hikkaduwa has often been its greatest enemy, and irresponsible tourism has resulted in significant damage to the reef. The major causes of reef damage are by visitors walking on the reef, collision of glass bottom boats with the reef, and pollution. If you visit Hikkaduwa it is important that you act responsibly and also encourage others to do so in order to ensure that the fragile eco-system is protected for the benefit of the generations to come.