The whole truth about the season and off-season in Sri Lanka

There is a common myth among tourists that you can only go to Sri Lanka, or rather its southern part, in the high season - from December to April. And in the summer there is nothing to do here, supposedly bad weather and endless rains

In fact, the situation is somewhat different. On the southwest and south coasts, as well as in the north and east, Sri Lanka actually divides the year into high and low seasons. What's the difference?

South Coast:

High season (mid-November - April)

On the southern coast of Sri Lanka, the high season really begins from mid-November to April. At this time, the ocean is usually calm, with small waves. The weather is sunny, rains are rare and short-lived. The air temperature fluctuates between 30-33°C, and the ocean water maintains a pleasant 29°C.

Rainy season (May - June)

May and June bring with them a transitional rainy season. At this time, the ocean becomes choppy and large waves often flood the beaches. Frequent tropical downpours occur over the course of two weeks to a month, most of which fall at night. The air and ocean temperatures drop slightly, reaching 26-27°C air and 25-26°C water. Local residents welcome this season as it brings essential moisture to the plants and gives the surrounding area a vibrant green hue.

Off-season (July - August)

Summer on the south coast (July - August) is the off-season period. Mostly rainless, but the ocean still offers waves and it is often cloudy. The air temperature remains comfortable at 30°C and the ocean water remains warm at 26°C. There are fewer tourists at this time, which makes it ideal for those who prefer peace and solitude.

Rainy season (September - October)

From September to October, and often the whole of November, the rainy season begins again, with frequent showers, mainly at night.

The high season returns from late November to April on the southern coast of Sri Lanka. Tourists are flocking to the coast again, and the ocean is becoming calmer. However, towards the end of April, the seasons begin to change again, and the waves become stronger.

North and northeast of the island:

Seasonality in the north and northeast of Sri Lanka differs from the southern coast and has its own characteristics. Dry season on the northeast coast: May to October. The best months for a holiday in Trincomalee or Batticaloa are June-August. The off-season occurs at approximately the same time as in the south of the island.

Surfing season in Arugam Bay (May - September)

Arugam Bay in eastern Sri Lanka is a surfing mecca, especially between May and September. During this time, the ocean offers high waves and Arugam becomes a popular destination among surfers from all over the world. Air and water temperatures remain comfortable for active recreation.


This is approximately the situation with the weather in Sri Lanka. The rainy periods do not always arrive at the same time. They can shift for several weeks. There may be heavy downpours, or they may only fall at night and not every day.

Author: Ceylon Top

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