The 5 Best Beaches in Sri Lanka

by Emese Graham
sri lanka beaches

In Sri Lanka, any time of year is an excellent time to spend the day at the beach. The perfect climate rolls clockwise around the island with the change of the seasons, and each coastline boasts a unique personality. Find the perfect beach for your Sri Lankan getaway here.


best beaches sri lankaBest time to visit: December to April

Bentota is one of the most famous Sri Lankan beaches, thanks to its calm, shallow waters and elongated beach, perfect for walking. Across the sand from the Indian Ocean is a lush backdrop of tall palm trees which provide some welcome shade and a gorgeous view to appreciate.

What’s more, there’s plenty to explore in the area: embark on a river safari through Bentota river, practice your scuba diving, or take a surfing class. Not far is Masjid-ul-Abrar, the oldest remaining mosque in Sri Lanka, which was built in 920 CE and still serves as a place of worship.


best beaches in sri lanka

Best time to visit: December to April

The waterfront here is ideal for lazy days. There are many quality restaurants in the area to duck into for some respite from the sun rays and indulge in a mouth-watering meal. Expect a well-maintained beach with golden sands and comfortable waves for swimming and splashing around.

If you’re craving some fun, rent a kayak from Tangalle Lagoon or stop by Indika Art Gallery to appreciate the beautiful work of Sri Lankan artists. Stay at Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort, to keep Tangalle beach right at your fingertips.


best beaches in sri lanka

Best time to visit: April to September

Every minute of your trek to the Cliff of Trincomalee will be worth it for the astonishing views from Lover’s Leap. The Indian Ocean seems to melt seamlessly into the sky. You can bring a camera, but we can guarantee no photo can quite convey just how awe-striking the scene is in person. To get there, you’ll visit Koneswaram Kovil, an active Hindu temple, which is found within Fort Frederick.

To get closer to the water for snorkelling, water sports, or just lounging on the sand, head a few minutes north to Uppuveli beach, a favourite destination for its wide shores and convenient access to Pigeon Island excursions and a whale watching vantage point that’s beginning to rival Mirissa Bay.


best beaches in sri lanka

Best time to visit: October to April

The Hikkaduwa National Park is a protected marine area boasting great biodiversity, making Hikkaduwa coral reef a fantastic spot for beginner-friendly snorkelling. Float among hundreds of species of reef fish and hard coral. You may even spot a giant sea turtle! Try to visit in the mornings for the best underwater visibility.

Once you’ve had some under-the-sea fun, walk a few minutes southeast to sunbathe at Narigama Beach, a quiet hidden gem, perfect for a relaxing Sri Lankan beach day.


best beaches in sri lanka

Best time to visit: December to April

The old town of Galle is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and a visual reminder of Sri Lanka’s history of colonization by the Portuguese, the Dutch, and the British. Take a stroll through the photogenic neighbourhood to visit Galle Dutch Fort, Galle Lighthouse, National Museum, and Galle Fort Clock Tower, plus shop for handicrafts to remember your Sri Lanka trip.

On the shores of Galle, it’s common to find tourists snapping photos of fishers on stilts. But, what seems like a traditional form of fishing only developed around WWII, and the practice died out just as quickly as it began.

The “fishermen” you see today are actors who make a living by posing for photos. Of course, feel free to enjoy the view anyways, but you should expect to pay a gratuity for your souvenir.


Plan the perfect Sri Lankan beach day and effortlessly book your Better Beach holiday with our expert travellers. Simply call 1-877-967-5302 anytime or find the Flight Centre store nearest you to get started.