I am from Sri lanka and I agree with whatever that is said here. Sri lanka is a beautiful island which is called the pearl of indian ocean because of it's beauty. Generally the people are very very friendly and if you know how to avoid unwated attention when you get any, then you ar quite safe. Staying with a local family means you are going to be one of the family for all the realatives and friends and all the villegers who are going to accept you with open arms to their hearts and lives...
Galle has a wonderful dutch fort which is same way as it was centuries away and UNESKO has declared it as a world heritage site. unawatuna beach is one of the most beautiful beaches you will see.
Southern coast is home for many turtle hatheries where you can go and see the way they help to conservate these animals(though it is getting more commecialised.. you will love the feeling of seeing 1000 of baby turtles ready to be free)
Hikkaduwa was very famous or coral reefs earlier but now it is getting extict soon. Only a handful of corals remain alive deep sea but still the boats and guides try their best to offer the "magical ride" Earlier you could see more tourists in Hikkaduwa as it was a tourist paradice but I do not know what is the situation there.
Ambalangoda will offer a noval experience as it isnthe place where they have the hand craft mask makers an the crats are very unique to sri lanka and a noval exoerience you will love. They will have variety of woodcratfss, mask and other items with nice desighs which would mak nice gifts to evryone at home.
As for prices.. bargain an you might get a cheper price. Always go and check from 2-3 plces and go for the best deal. Batik garments with colourful designs are must have.. dresses,shirts,skirts,scrafs,hankies everything in batik an bibrant colours... nice for a summer in your home country.
From Galle you can visit the near by towns like Koggala where you can see lot of clay pottery maker and spice gardens and may be go on river safari. One of the unique sights is seeing fishermen in castal sea water sitting on han made wooden seat and pole in the sea for hours and hours.. THIS CAN BE SEEN ONLY THIS PART OF SRI LANKA and only this in teh world.
As for travelling to Galle, you can take the luxuary intercity AC bus or the train.. Bus will take 3 hours and train a bit more. If you hire a van or a car you can stop at all the places you want to visit and go. While in Galle you can take the 3 wheeler TUk Tuk or bus or hire. If you are going o hire car,van or Tuk tuk regularly or daily get stick to one reliable driver and they will be very helpful and you can negotiate bettr rates. At the end of entire tour tip them an they will be happy.
Food!!! that is one thing cheap if you like spicy and hot! you will find ample places to eat.. sri lankan rice & curry, chinese, western etc. Since Galle and Unawatuna and the rest of towns are tourist atractions finding anice and small place would not be hard and cheap also. Most expensive thing in the menu is going to be Lobster and King Prwawns.. check the prices and you might be surprice How CHEAP comparing to your home country prices. The family you are staying will definitely provide you with all the traditional variety of yummy sri lankan food for breakfast and dinner. Try the Coconut Rotty, Plain Hoppers and Egg hoppers (Yummy yummmmmmyyy)
Well....... have a wonderful time.
if you need more help on anyhting I will be more that happy to help.