Your travel guide for Sri Lanka

Unawatuna beach, located on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, is a lovely destination for anyone planning a trip to this beautiful island nation. Once ranked as the number 1 beach in the world, it is known for its clear waters, golden sands, and stunning sunsets.


The beach is a crescent-shaped stretch of sand perfect for swimming and sunbathing. The water is a beautiful turquoise blue, and the gentle waves make it an ideal and safe beach for families with young children. A wide variety of beautiful marine life can be found in the waters just off the shore, including colorful corals and schools of exotic fish.

Things to do at Unawatuna Beach

One of the best things about Unawatuna beach is the laid-back, relaxed atmosphere. There are plenty of beachside restaurants and bars where you can grab a drink and watch the sun go down, and there are also many local vendors selling crafts and souvenirs. The beach is also home to several yoga and meditation centers, which offer classes for visitors looking to relax and rejuvenate.

Water Sports and Activities

Unawatuna beach is also great for water sports and activities like jet skiing, diving, and snorkeling. Several local operators offer lessons, so getting started is easy even if you've never tried these activities. For those interested in exploring the underwater world, the area is home to several shipwrecks and coral reefs that can be accessed through guided scuba diving excursions. If you prefer a more leisurely water activity, consider renting a paddleboard or kayak to explore the calm waters along the shoreline.

Beachside Accommodations

Unawatuna offers a variety of accommodations to suit different budgets and preferences. From luxurious beachfront resorts to charming guesthouses and budget-friendly hostels, you will surely find the perfect place to rest and relax after a day in the sun. Many of the accommodations are within walking distance of the beach, making it easy for you to enjoy the sun, sand, and surf at your leisure.

How to Get to Unawatuna Beach

Unawatuna beach is easily accessible from the nearby city of Galle, which is well-connected to other parts of Sri Lanka by road and rail. From Colombo, you can take a train or bus to Galle and then continue your journey to Unawatuna via a short taxi or tuk-tuk ride. The drive from Colombo to Unawatuna takes less than 2 hours on the Southern Expressway. You can also hire a private car or van for a more comfortable and convenient journey. Several tour operators and car rental agencies offer services for travelers looking to explore Sri Lanka at their own pace.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit the Unawatuna beach is during the dry season, which typically lasts from December to April. During this time, the weather is sunny and warm, with daytime temperatures averaging around 28-30°C (82-86°F). This is the ideal time for swimming, sunbathing, and participating in water sports. The monsoon season, which runs from May to September, brings heavy rains and strong winds to the southern coast of Sri Lanka. While the beach may be less crowded during this time, the weather can be unpredictable, and some water activities may be limited.

Nearby Attractions

In addition to the beach, several other attractions in the area are worth visiting.

  1. Unawatuna Temple: Closest to the beach, there is the Unawatuna Temple, which is a Buddhist temple that dates back to the 6th century. The temple is built on a hillside overlooking the beach, and the views from the top are absolutely breathtaking.
  2. Japanese Peace Pagoda: Another popular attraction in the area is the Japanese Peace Pagoda, a Buddhist stupa built in the 20th century by a group of Japanese monks. The pagoda is located on a hill overlooking the beach and is a great spot to catch a sunset or take in the panoramic views of the coastline.
  3. Galle: The historical Galle city is just a short drive away from Unawatuna beach. It is home to several historical sites, including the Galle Fort, built by the Dutch in the 17th century. The fort has been well-preserved and is now a UNESCO World Heritage site. Within the fort, you can explore narrow cobblestone streets, visit museums and art galleries, and dine at some of the best restaurants in the region.
  4. Koggala Sea Turtle Hatchery: For animal lovers, a visit to the Koggala Sea Turtle Hatchery is a great idea. The hatchery is dedicated to the conservation of sea turtles and offers visitors the opportunity to learn about these fascinating creatures, as well as participate in the release of baby turtles into the ocean.
  5. Unawatuna Town: The Unawatuna town itself is a charming and vibrant town with plenty of things to keep you engaged.

If you're planning to visit Southern Sri Lanka, Unawatuna beach is definitely a destination that should be on your list. Its stunning natural beauty, relaxed atmosphere, and abundance of activities make it the perfect spot to relax and rejuvenate. Whether you're looking to swim, snorkel, dive, or relax on the beach, you will most certainly leave Unawatuna with happy memories!

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