If you want an escape from winter early next year, head to a tropical country such as Sri Lanka. It hosts an abundance of diverse activities perfect for the weather you are searching for. The famous stilt fishing in Sri Lanka, locally known as ritipanna, has been a destination experience for foreign tourists. This unique art of catching fish is rich in tradition and believed to have started after the Second World War.

This exceptional method of fishing could be witnessed in the south western parts of the country, especially Galle, Kathaluwa and Ahangama. Many may think that it is outdated but fishermen, who do not have modern tools to catch fish, still practice this approach.

From across the seas of the said provinces, one can see narrow poles settled in the sea bed. Each pole has a think plank nailed to it. It looks like a cross bar which serves a seat for the fishermen. A stilt is tied to the intersection of the pole and the cross bar. One pole can only accommodate one fisherman. Fishermen also tie a small plastic bag around their waist or around the pole. This is where they keep the fish that they catch. Using one hand, they hold on to the stilt and the other hand is to hold on to their fishing rod. They usually target herring or small mackerel which are easy to sell in the nearby villages.

The fisherman, usually, fish either before sunrise or dusk where there is not much disturbance in the water areas. It used to be a good source of livelihood, but, things have changed after the tsunami hit the country in 2004. The seas were not that bountiful with catch.

Although it seems outdated, this method of fishing communicates the older generation's values of perseverance and positivity. It takes long hours to stay and catch the fish. Many foreign tourists are allowed to climb up and perch on the stilts for an exchange of a souvenir or cash.