One of the main reasons for tourists to visit the Kalpitiya area from November to March/April is dolphins. You may see pods of up to 1000 dolphins. Kalpitiya is perfect for dolphin and whale watching because you do not have to head out too deep into the ocean to catch a glimpse of them. The continental shelf is much closer than reported in admiralty charts the shelf actually runs near and alongside the shoreline. This means you can see many species of marine life just a short boat ride away from the shore. You will be led by trained guides who speak English. They will brief you on everything you need to know about the dolphins/whales you encounter.
Watching dolphins swimming alongside you and under your boat, while they leap out of the ocean is truly an unforgettable experience. The sea will not be as rough during this period as it is during the monsoon season and it will be easier to spot dolphins as a result. Pods that have hundreds of dolphins are spotted often in Kalpitiya, especially near the Bar Reef, which is just a one-hour boat ride away. Sightings are almost guaranteed during this period. The excursions will ideally commence at sunrise, and last about 2-3 hours.
The extremely amusing long-snouted or spinner dolphins are very common in the northern waters of Sri Lanka. They are playful and acrobatic and get their name from the spins that they have become famous for performing while leaping out of the water.