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Welcome to place daydreams are made of: white-sandy beaches and palm-lined shores on the southern coast of Sri Lanka.

Why go?

On the southern coast of Sri Lanka, the palm-shrouded sands of Thalpe's beaches slip gently into the clear waters of the Indian Ocean.

The beaches are clustered around the coastal village of Unawata, where locals fish using the traditional ritipanna method, in which they drive stilits into the seabed and drop lines into the water from their perch - an activity that makes them look like hungry storks.

There's no need for anything quite so energetic on this beach though. These soft sands positively demand relaxation. 

How to get there: British Airways flies from London Gatwick to Colombo (Bandaranaike Intn); from £495 return

Travel time: 10 hours and 45 minutes flight from London. It's then a 2 hours drive from Colombo to Thalpe

Where to stay: Transindus organises tailor-made nine-to-14-day tours to Sri Lanka

To book: Visit transindus.co.uk or call 0844 879 3960