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Updated by Joanna James on May 04, 2020
Headline for Best beaches in Sri Lanka – The tropical paradise of Southeast Asia
Joanna James Joanna James
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Best beaches in Sri Lanka – The tropical paradise of Southeast Asia

Sri Lanka is gifted with a wonderful coastline, and so it has some of the best beaches in the world. Surrounded by the sapphire-blue ocean; Sri Lanka offers you the perfect beach vacation.


Arugam Bay

Located on the south-east coast, Arugam Bay is one of the best surfing spots in Sri Lanka. The beach offers the perfect waves for surfing. Arugam Bay is a small community that's very welcoming to visitors. The beach and the vicinity are breezy, and the atmosphere is peaceful. Travellers visit Arugam Bay all year long; however, the best time to visit, especially if surfing is a top priority, is the high season. High season falls between April and October: this is when the surfers catch the legendary swells of Arugam Bay.



This is another gem found in the Southern Province of Sri Lanka. Hikkaduwa is a beach town that's popular among backpackers who like to party. The hedonistic combination of swimming, surfing, good food, lounging, cultural landmarks and spa treatments is too tempting to resist. In Sri Lanka, Hikkaduwa is commonly associated with recreation and relaxation.


Negombo Beach

Negombo is a small beach town located off the west coast. Though the town doesn't offer a lot of activities, its close proximity to the airport makes it a popular destination. The golden sandy beach is the perfect spot to relax. Excellent accommodation, authentic Sri Lankan food and Sri Lankan culture are a few details of Negombo's touristy appeal.


Bentota Beach

Bentota is a small coastal town located south of Colombo and a tourist hotspot. Getting here from the capital takes about 90 minutes. The 8 km long coastline is the main attraction. Just off the beach are several bars offering a collection of drinks, and there is a number of seaside resorts as well.


Mirissa Beach

When it comes to Mirissa, the first thing that anyone, inevitably, thinks of is whale watching. Several Ahungalla hotels make the most of it by arranging whale watching tours for guests; an example would be Heritance Ahungalla. Mirissa beach is located on the southernmost tip of Sri Lanka. The beach is absolutely beautiful with the contrast of blue waters and golden sand. The waves are ideal for surfing, and the beach offers snorkelling opportunities as well.


Passikudah Bay/ Kalkudah Beach

Passikudah Bay is a part of Kalukudah Beach and a delightful one at that. The beach is a major tourist attraction in Sri Lanka, and you shouldn't miss out on its delights. Taking a relaxing dip in the ocean and lounging in the sun are things you can do at Kalkudah Beach. Surfers find the beach to be an excellent surfing spot too. If you prioritise surfing, the best time to visit the beach is September: this is when you get major swells ideal for surfing. Unsurprisingly, September is also the high season.


Dickwella Beach

Dickwella is one of the most charming coastal destinations in Sri Lanka. The beach is perfect for swimming, and it is crowded with palm trees, sandbars, reefs and headlands. Snorkelling is one of the possibilities here, and the town has a list of attractions. The seaside market, the large Buddha statue and restaurants are some of the interesting features of the town.


Pigeon Island

This is a marine park located one kilometre away from Nilaveli. Sea turtles, reef sharks and several other fish species make a home here. The island has a massive number of rock pigeons; hence its name. If you decide to visit Pigeon Island, make sure you try scuba diving; the island is known as a popular scuba diving spot in Sri Lanka on account of its diverse marine life.