If you’re looking for the best beaches in Sri Lanka then look no further. Here’s my personal round up of Sri Lanka beaches.
1. Mirissa Beach
Located on the south coast, Mirissa Beach is a popular tourist destination. When you see its beautiful, long sandy beach with pristine blue water, you can understand why.
With three separate bays and some cool rock points in-between, this is a perfect beach for surfing, swimming or relaxing.
There are areas with bars and restaurants offering sunbeds. However, there’s also plenty of space to find a quiet spot of the beach if that is what you prefer.
If you like seafood, the restaurants here do some great dishes with fish caught fresh every day. As well as plenty of other tasty dishes.
With a nice vibe and amazing sunsets, this really is one of the best beaches in Sri Lanka and a lovely place to chill, day or night.
2. Uppuveli Beach
Located just north of the city of Trincomalee on the east coast, Uppuveli Beach is a beautiful long sandy beach with picturesque palm trees and calm blue water.
This can be quite a busy beach due to the tourists from the hotels in the area walking down to it. Although, it is a large beach and you are sure to find a quiet spot if that’s what you prefer.
There are also plenty of restaurants, cafes and hipster beach bars with music and hammocks around the beach offering a friendly party vibe.
This lovely sandy beach is great for relaxing or swimming in the calm blue waters. You can also sit and watch the local fishermen with their colourful boats going about their daily work.
3. Dalawella Beach
Located just down the road from the town of Unawatuna on the south coast, Dalawella Beach is a stunning stretch of golden sand. Famous for its rope swing and low bending palm trees it attracts a lot of travellers.
In the last couple of years, the ‘instafamous’ Dalawella Beach rope swing has become a huge attraction. With photos popping up all over social media and many travellers adding it to their Sri Lanka bucket list.
Just along the beach is another ‘instafamous’ spot – Wijaya Rock. This enormous rock juts out into the sea and again offers up some great photo opportunities.
This beautiful beach also has a couple of restaurants where you can sit and watch the sun setting after snapping all your amazing shots!
We would definitely recommend this as one of the best beaches in Sri Lanka for its sheer beauty.
4. Arugam Bay Beach
Located on the east coast, Arugam Bay Beach is a crescent-moon shaped curl of soft, golden sand and is home to one of the best surf spots in the country.
Hence why it’s on most people’s Sri Lanka itinerary.
There are plenty of places to hire boards from in town. We paid 500 rupees for a half day which gave us 4 hours of surf time.
So whether you’re a keen surfer, would like to learn, or would like to relax and watch some great surfing, Arugam Bay is going to be on of the best beaches in Sri Lanka for you!
5. Peanut Farm Beach
Bordering a forest and lagoon, Peanut Farm Beach is a secluded and peaceful beach, south of Arugam Bay on the east coast.
This great, unspoilt location has a beautiful white sandy beach, rock formations, trees and thatched huts.
It’s popular for swimming, relaxing, sunning and is perfect if you are looking for a quiet surf spot with not as many tourists as some of the other surf beaches.
Years ago, actual peanuts are believed to have been grown here but now only the name remains, due to the disastrous Tsunami effects in 2004.
This beach has a really chilled out, peaceful vibe as well as an awesome beach shack that serves up fresh food and smoothies!
6. Weligama Beach
Just 15 minutes up the road from Mirissa, on the south coast of Sri Lanka, is Weligama Beach – another great surfing spot.
The beach is quite large, so it doesn’t ever feel too crowded and there’s usually plenty of space in the water too.
Lots of travellers visit this beach to try out surfing as the waves here are quite gentle and perfect for beginners.
There are a number of surfing schools in the area but the main company we noticed everyone using was Freedom Surf School.
There are also plenty of beachside restaurants and bars in this area so, if surfing is not your thing, you can still relax and enjoy this calm and peaceful beach.
7. Secret Beach
Secret Beach is a cute bay tucked away on the south coast of Sri Lanka near the town of Mirissa.
It’s quite an adventure just getting to this beach, which is about 30 minutes from the main Mirissa beach along a steep 2.1km trail.
However, once you arrive, you can relax and refuel at a pretty bar and restaurant, perched underneath the trees in the shade. Around the edges are some cute swings with great panoramic views of the beach.
There’s also a beautiful lagoon area, protected by a wall of rocks where the water is quite calm and good for swimming.
Although Secret Beach is not so secret anymore, it really does have a special feel and is definitely worth the short trek to reach it.
8. Hiriketiya Beach
Hiriketiya Beach, on the south coast of Sri Lanka, is a small, curved stretch of beach with soft golden sand and overhanging palm trees, giving it the feel of a jungle paradise.
With the curve forming a bay like shape, it creates pretty high waves, attracting many surfers to the area. However, this beach doesn’t get as busy with surfers as Arugam Bay Beach.
There are hipster restaurants and quirky cafes dotted along the beach. These make for a great place to relax and have a good time watching the surfers and enjoy the chilled vibes.
It’s also an awesome spot to hang out and watch the sunset with friends. With such a lovely atmosphere, this really is one of the best beaches in Sri Lanka.
9. Turtle Beach
Located in Hikkaduwa, a seaside resort town in the south west of Sri Lanka, Turtle Beach is a popular spot in Sri Lanka for one thing – turtles!
Hikkaduwa turtles are super local to this part of the coastline and can be spotted by snorkelling up and down the beaches all year round.
These wild turtles are completely free and they have been known to visit a certain point of the shore to feed on the seaweed and lay their eggs for many years.
Conservation workers help tourists gather seaweed, for those that want to feed the turtles, and they make sure nobody is touching or mistreating the animals.
For turtle lovers, this is absolutely one of the best beaches in Sri Lanka to visit!
Where To Stay In Sri Lanka
For pre-booking accommodation when travelling, I always recommend Booking.com!
From 5 star hotels, to budget backpacker hostels, it’s got everything and the site is super easy to use.
So to compare deals, and pre-book all of your Sri Lanka accommodation, you can check the latest prices on Booking.com.