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Sri Lanka surf in December carvings the best beaches in 2024.

Sri lanka surf in december

Sri Lanka surf in December


Surfing in Sri Lanka has garnered global attention in recent years, attracting wave enthusiasts from across the globe to its pristine shores. With a coastline fringed by palm trees, warm waters, and an abundance of surf breaks, Sri Lanka offers an idyllic setting for both seasoned surfers and beginners alike. In this article, we delve into the exhilarating world of surfing in Sri Lanka, particularly focusing on the allure of catching waves in December.

December marks the beginning of the surf season in Sri Lanka, heralding the arrival of favorable conditions for wave riders. As the island emerges from the southwest monsoon, surfers eagerly anticipate the onset of consistent swells and offshore winds, creating ideal surfing conditions along Sri Lanka’s picturesque coastline. With fewer crowds compared to the peak tourist season and a perfect blend of warm weather and inviting waves, December presents an irresistible opportunity for surfers to explore the waves of Sri Lanka and immerse themselves in the beauty of its coastal landscapes.

Surfing Conditions in Sri Lanka in December

Overview of Weather Patterns in Sri Lanka in December:

December in Sri Lanka marks the transition between the southwest and northeast monsoons, offering a mix of weather patterns across the island. While the southwest monsoon prevails in the western and southern regions, bringing occasional rainfall and cooler temperatures, the northeast monsoon influences the eastern and northern coasts with drier conditions and moderate temperatures. Overall, December enjoys warm and balmy weather across Sri Lanka, with average temperatures ranging from 25°C to 30°C (77°F to 86°F), making it an ideal time for surfing adventures.

Description of Surf Conditions on Both East and West Coasts:

East Coast (Arugam Bay): December marks the beginning of the surf season on the east coast, particularly in renowned surf spots like Arugam Bay. As the northeast monsoon brings offshore winds and consistent swells to the region, surfers can expect clean and powerful waves ideal for riding. Arugam Bay’s main break, known as “Main Point,” offers long and peeling waves, perfect for intermediate to advanced surfers. Other breaks along the east coast, such as Whiskey Point and Peanut Farm, provide opportunities for surfers of all levels to enjoy the waves.

West Coast (Hikkaduwa, Weligama): While the west coast experiences the tail end of the southwest monsoon in December, surfers can still find enjoyable waves along popular breaks such as Hikkaduwa and Weligama. Although conditions may be slightly more variable compared to the east coast, December often sees smaller crowds and cleaner waves on the west coast. Hikkaduwa offers a variety of breaks suitable for all skill levels, while Weligama is renowned for its beginner-friendly waves and surf schools, making it an ideal destination for those.

Overall, December presents favorable surf conditions on both the east and west coasts of Sri Lanka, providing surfers with ample opportunities to experience the thrill of riding the waves amidst.

Best Surf Spots in Sri Lanka for December

Arugam Bay:

Characteristics: Arugam Bay, located on the east coast of Sri Lanka, is renowned for its consistent waves and laid-back atmosphere. The main break, known as “Main Point,” offers long, peeling waves that are ideal for intermediate to advanced surfers. Additionally, breaks such as Whiskey Point and Peanut Farm provide diverse options for surfers of all skill levels.

Suitability: Arugam Bay caters primarily to intermediate and advanced surfers due to the powerful nature of its waves. However, beginners can also find suitable breaks and surf schools in the area to hone their skills under the guidance of experienced instructors.


Characteristics: Situated on the southwest coast of Sri Lanka, Hikkaduwa offers a variety of breaks suitable for surfers of all levels. The main reef break at Hikkaduwa Beach produces consistent waves that are ideal for beginners and intermediate surfers. Other breaks in the area, such as Benny’s and North Jetty, provide additional options for those seeking more challenging waves.

Suitability: Hikkaduwa is well-suited for surfers of all skill levels, with its range of breaks catering to beginners, intermediates, and advanced riders alike. The gently rolling waves at Hikkaduwa Beach make it particularly popular among beginners learning to surf.


Characteristics: Weligama, located on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, is known for its gentle, rolling waves that are perfect for beginners and longboarders. The main break at Weligama Beach offers consistent waves ideal for practicing and improving surfing skills. Additionally, the area is dotted with surf schools and rental shops, making it accessible for those new to the sport.

Suitability: Weligama is highly suitable for beginners and novice surfers due to its mellow waves and supportive surf infrastructure. Surf schools in the area offer lessons and guidance to help beginners gain confidence and proficiency in the water.

Overall, Arugam Bay, Hikkaduwa, and Weligama stand out as some of the best surf spots in Sri Lanka for December, offering diverse waves and experiences for surfers of all levels. Whether you’re seeking powerful reef breaks, gentle rolling waves, or expert guidance to improve your skills, these surf spots have something to offer for everyone looking to ride the waves in Sri Lanka’s warm and inviting waters.

Wave Forecast and Swell Conditions

Explanation of Wave Forecasts:

Wave forecasts provide surfers with valuable information about upcoming wave conditions, helping them plan their surfing sessions effectively. In December, surfers in Sri Lanka can access wave forecasts through various online platforms and mobile applications, which utilize data from weather buoys, satellite imagery, and meteorological models to predict wave heights, periods, and directions.

Wave forecasts typically include the following elements:

Wave Height: Indicates the size of the waves, measured from trough to crest. Wave heights are often categorized into ranges (e.g., 2-4 feet, 4-6 feet) to provide surfers with an estimate of wave size.

Wave Period: Refers to the time interval between successive waves, measured in seconds. Longer wave periods generally indicate more powerful and organized swell conditions.

Wave Direction: Specifies the compass direction from which the waves are originating. Knowledge of wave direction helps surfers identify the best breaks and orientations for optimal surfing conditions.

Surfers can interpret wave forecasts to determine the best times and locations for surfing in December. By assessing factors such as wave height, period, and direction, surfers can identify suitable breaks, plan their sessions around peak wave conditions, and maximize their time in the water.

Discussion of Typical Swell Conditions:

In December, surfers in Sri Lanka can expect a variety of swell conditions depending on factors such as monsoon patterns, wind patterns, and geographical location. While the east coast experiences the onset of the northeast monsoon, resulting in consistent swells and offshore winds ideal for surfing, the west coast may still receive residual swells from the southwest monsoon.

Typical swell conditions in December may include:

Consistent Swells: The northeast monsoon brings consistent swells to the east coast, particularly in popular surf spots like Arugam Bay. Surfers can expect long-period swells with good energy and directionality, creating ideal surfing conditions.

Variable Swells: The west coast may experience more variable swell conditions in December, influenced by the tail end of the southwest monsoon and local wind patterns. While surfers can still find enjoyable waves along the west coast, conditions may be more unpredictable compared to the east coast.

Surfers should monitor wave forecasts closely and adapt their plans accordingly based on prevailing swell conditions. By staying informed and flexible, surfers can make the most of December surfing in Sri Lanka and enjoy the diverse wave experiences offered by the island’s coastline.

Crowds and Atmosphere

Analysis of Crowd Levels in December Compared to Peak Seasons:

December in Sri Lanka typically sees fewer crowds compared to peak surfing seasons, which coincide with the dry season from April to October. During these peak months, surfers from around the world flock to popular surf spots, leading to more crowded lineups and limited availability of accommodations and services.

In contrast, December falls within the transition period between the southwest and northeast monsoons, resulting in fewer tourists and surfers visiting the island. While December still attracts its fair share of surfers eager to catch the early swells of the northeast monsoon, the overall crowd levels tend to be lower compared to peak seasons. This offers surfers the advantage of enjoying more uncrowded waves and a more relaxed atmosphere at popular surf spots.

Description of the Atmosphere at Popular Surf Spots During December:

Arugam Bay: In December, Arugam Bay exudes a laid-back and welcoming atmosphere, with surfers and travelers gathering to enjoy the early swells of the northeast monsoon. While the lineup at main breaks like “Main Point” may still attract surfers, the overall vibe is more relaxed compared to peak season. Surfers can unwind at beachside cafes, mingle with locals and fellow travelers, and soak in the tranquil ambiance of this coastal paradise.

Hikkaduwa: December brings a festive atmosphere to Hikkaduwa, with surfers enjoying the mellow waves and vibrant beach scene. While the main breaks may see moderate crowds, there’s still plenty of space for surfers to catch waves and enjoy the laid-back vibe of this popular surf destination. Surfers can explore the bustling streets, sample local cuisine, and experience the lively nightlife that Hikkaduwa has to offer.

Weligama: Weligama exudes a relaxed and beginner-friendly atmosphere in December, making it an ideal spot for novice surfers and families. While the main breaks may see moderate crowds, there’s ample space along the beach for surfers to practice and improve their skills. Surfers can enjoy the friendly hospitality of local surf schools, explore the scenic coastline, and immerse themselves in the tranquil coastal lifestyle of Weligama.

Overall, December offers surfers the opportunity to enjoy the waves and soak in the vibrant atmosphere of popular surf spots in Sri Lanka, with fewer crowds and a more laid-back vibe compared to peak seasons. Whether you’re seeking uncrowded waves or a relaxed beach getaway, December promises an unforgettable surfing experience amidst the stunning coastal landscapes of Sri Lanka.

Weather and Climate Considerations

Detailed Look at the Weather Patterns and Climate in Sri Lanka in December:

December in Sri Lanka signifies the transition between the southwest and northeast monsoons, resulting in diverse weather patterns across the island. While the southwest monsoon prevails in the western and southern regions, bringing occasional rainfall and cooler temperatures, the northeast monsoon influences the eastern and northern coasts with drier conditions and moderate temperatures.

In terms of temperature, December offers warm and balmy weather throughout Sri Lanka, with average temperatures ranging from 25°C to 30°C (77°F to 86°F). However, it’s essential to note that weather conditions can vary significantly depending on geographical location and elevation. Coastal areas generally experience higher temperatures and humidity levels, while inland regions may be cooler and more temperate.

While December marks the beginning of the surf season in Sri Lanka, surfers should be aware of potential weather hazards such as sudden rain showers, gusty winds, and thunderstorms. It’s advisable to stay informed about weather forecasts and monitor local conditions before heading out for a surf session.

Tips for Surfers on How to Prepare for Varying Weather Conditions:

Check Weather Forecasts: Stay updated on weather forecasts for your surf destination and be prepared for changing conditions. Utilize reliable sources such as meteorological websites, mobile apps, and local surf reports to monitor weather patterns and plan your surfing activities accordingly.

Pack Appropriate Attire: Bring suitable attire for varying weather conditions, including lightweight and breathable clothing for hot and humid days, as well as waterproof gear for protection against rain showers. Additionally, don’t forget to pack sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat to shield yourself from the sun’s rays while out on the water.

Stay Hydrated: Hydration is essential, especially in warm and humid conditions. Bring an ample supply of water and stay hydrated throughout the day to avoid dehydration and heat-related illnesses. Consider carrying a reusable water bottle to minimize plastic waste and environmental impact.

Be Flexible: Be prepared to adjust your surfing plans based on weather conditions and surf forecasts. If adverse weather conditions arise, consider exploring alternative activities such as sightseeing, yoga, or cultural experiences to make the most of your time in Sri Lanka.

Safety First: Prioritize safety at all times while surfing in Sri Lanka. Be aware of potential hazards such as strong currents, reef breaks, and marine life. Surf within your skill level, wear appropriate safety gear, and adhere to local surf regulations to ensure a safe and enjoyable surfing experience.

By staying informed about weather conditions, packing essential gear, and prioritizing safety, surfers can prepare effectively for varying weather conditions and make the most of their surfing adventures in Sri Lanka in December. With its warm climate, inviting waves, and stunning coastal scenery, December offers an ideal backdrop for unforgettable surfing experiences in this tropical paradise.

Tips for Surfing in December

Practical Advice for Surfers Planning to Visit Sri Lanka in December:

Book Accommodation in Advance: December marks the beginning of the surf season in Sri Lanka, so it’s advisable to book accommodation in advance, especially in popular surf towns like Arugam Bay, Hikkaduwa, and Weligama. Consider staying close to the surf breaks for easy access to the waves.

Check Visa Requirements: Ensure that you have the necessary visa requirements sorted before your trip to Sri Lanka. Depending on your nationality, you may be eligible for a tourist visa on arrival or may need to apply for a visa in advance.

Pack Essentials: Pack light and pack smart. Bring along essentials such as sunscreen, rash guards, surf wax, reef booties, and a first aid kit. Consider renting surf equipment locally to avoid the hassle of transporting bulky gear.

Stay Hydrated and Nourished: Surfing under the tropical sun can be physically demanding, so remember to stay hydrated and nourished. Carry water and snacks to keep your energy levels up throughout the day.

Respect Local Customs and Culture: Familiarize yourself with local customs and culture to ensure a respectful and enjoyable experience in Sri Lanka. Dress modestly when outside of the beach, and be mindful of cultural sensitivities.

Safety Tips:

Know Your Limits: Surf within your skill level and avoid attempting waves that are beyond your abilities. Start with smaller waves and gradually progress to more challenging breaks as you gain experience.

Watch Out for Hazards: Be aware of potential hazards such as rocks, reefs, strong currents, and marine life. Scout the lineup before paddling out and choose safe entry and exit points.

Use Proper Equipment: Ensure that your surfboard is suitable for the conditions and your skill level. Check your leash and board regularly for any signs of wear and tear, and replace them if necessary.

Buddy Up: Surf with a friend or buddy whenever possible. Having someone to watch your back can provide an extra layer of safety and support in case of emergencies.

Respect Other Surfers: Practice good surf etiquette and respect the lineup. Wait your turn, avoid dropping in on other surfers, and communicate clearly with fellow surfers to prevent collisions and accidents.

Other Useful Information:

Emergency Contacts: Save important emergency contacts, including local emergency services, hospitals, and embassy/consulate numbers, in your phone or write them down in case of emergencies.

Learn About Local Surf Conditions: Familiarize yourself with local surf conditions, including tide times, wave direction, and potential hazards. Seek advice from local surfers or instructors for insights into the best breaks and conditions.

Have Fun and Enjoy the Experience: Above all, remember to have fun and enjoy the surfing experience in Sri Lanka. Embrace the thrill of riding the waves, soak in the stunning coastal scenery, and create lasting memories in this tropical paradise.

Other Activities and Attractions

While surfing undoubtedly takes center stage in Sri Lanka’s coastal regions, the island offers a plethora of alternative activities and attractions to complement your surfing adventure. Whether you seek cultural immersion, natural exploration, or recreational pursuits, Sri Lanka boasts a diverse array of experiences beyond the waves.

Alternative Activities Besides Surfing:

Wildlife Safaris: Embark on a thrilling wildlife safari in one of Sri Lanka’s national parks, such as Yala, Wilpattu, or Udawalawe, to encounter majestic elephants, elusive leopards, and a myriad of bird species in their natural habitat.

Cultural Exploration: Immerse yourself in Sri Lanka’s rich cultural heritage by visiting UNESCO World Heritage Sites such as the ancient city of Sigiriya, the sacred city of Kandy, and the colonial-era Galle Fort. Explore centuries-old temples, vibrant markets, and traditional villages to gain insight into the island’s vibrant culture and history.

Nature Trekking: Lace up your hiking boots and embark on a scenic trek through Sri Lanka’s lush hill country or pristine rainforests. Discover breathtaking waterfalls, verdant tea plantations, and panoramic viewpoints as you traverse diverse landscapes teeming with flora and fauna.

Yoga and Wellness Retreats: Rejuvenate your mind, body, and spirit with a yoga retreat or wellness getaway in Sri Lanka’s serene surroundings. Unwind with daily yoga sessions, meditation practices, and holistic treatments amidst tranquil settings, offering a rejuvenating escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Cultural, Natural, and Recreational Attractions:

Sigiriya Rock Fortress: Ascend the ancient rock fortress of Sigiriya, adorned with magnificent frescoes and surrounded by lush gardens, offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Tea Plantations of Nuwara Eliya: Explore the picturesque tea plantations of Nuwara Eliya, nestled amidst rolling hills and misty valleys, where you can learn about the art of tea cultivation and sample world-renowned Ceylon tea.

Mirissa Whale Watching: Embark on an unforgettable whale-watching excursion from Mirissa, where you can spot majestic blue whales, playful dolphins, and other marine life in the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean.

Elephant Orphanage in Pinnawala: Visit the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage to observe rescued elephants being bathed and cared for in a natural sanctuary setting, providing insight into conservation efforts to protect these gentle giants.

Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or cultural immersion, Sri Lanka offers a myriad of activities and attractions to captivate your senses and enrich your travel experience. From surfing the waves to exploring ancient ruins, lush landscapes, and vibrant cultures, Sri Lanka invites you to embark on a journey of discovery and delight amidst its breathtaking beauty and diverse offerings.

Sustainability and Environmental Awareness

Discussion of Sustainable Surfing Practices:

Responsible Waste Management: Properly dispose of trash and plastic waste, both on the beach and in the water. Participate in beach clean-up initiatives and encourage others to do the same.

Support Local Communities: Choose surf schools, accommodations, and businesses that prioritize sustainable practices and contribute positively to local communities.

Respect Marine Life: Avoid disturbing marine habitats and wildlife while surfing. Give marine animals, such as turtles and dolphins, ample space and refrain from feeding or touching them.

Use Eco-Friendly Products: Opt for eco-friendly surf gear, such as boards made from sustainable materials and biodegradable waxes. Reduce plastic usage by investing in reusable water bottles and packaging.

Conserve Water: Be mindful of water usage when rinsing off gear or showering after a surf session. Consider using biodegradable soaps and limiting water waste whenever possible.

Tips for Minimizing Environmental Impact While Enjoying the Waves:

Take all trash and belongings with you when leaving the beach, leaving behind only footprints.

Respect Local Regulations: Observe and adhere to local surfing regulations and guidelines, including designated surfing areas, beach access rules, and protected marine zones.

Protect Coastal Ecosystems: Avoid trampling on dunes, coral reefs, and sensitive coastal habitats. Stick to designated pathways and avoid disturbing fragile ecosystems.

Reduce Carbon Footprint: Minimize transportation emissions by carpooling, using public transportation, or cycling to surf spots whenever possible. Consider offsetting carbon emissions from travel through reforestation or carbon offset programs.

Educate Others: Share knowledge and promote environmental awareness among fellow surfers, friends, and local communities. Encourage others to adopt sustainable surfing practices and become stewards of the ocean.

By embracing sustainable surfing practices and minimizing our environmental impact, surfers can contribute to the preservation and protection of our oceans and coastal environments for future generations to enjoy. Together, we can make a positive difference and ensure that our passion for surfing remains harmonious with the natural world.


In conclusion, surfing in Sri Lanka in December presents an irresistible opportunity for wave enthusiasts to immerse themselves in the beauty and excitement of the island’s waves. With favorable surf conditions, warm weather, and a diverse array of surf spots to explore, December offers an idyllic backdrop for unforgettable surfing experiences.

From the world-class breaks of Arugam Bay to the laid-back vibes of Hikkaduwa and Weligama, surfers can discover a variety of waves suited to their skill levels and preferences. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner looking to catch your first wave, Sri Lanka’s coastal regions beckon with endless possibilities and thrilling adventures on the water.

As you embark on your surfing journey in Sri Lanka, remember to embrace sustainable practices, respect the environment, and cherish the natural beauty that surrounds you. By adopting a mindful approach to surfing and minimizing your environmental footprint, you can contribute to the conservation of our oceans and coastal ecosystems for generations to come.

So, pack your board, wax up your surfboard, and set off to experience the allure of surfing in Sri Lanka in December. Whether you’re riding the waves at sunrise, exploring the island’s cultural treasures, or simply soaking in the laid-back atmosphere of beach life, December promises an unforgettable surfing adventure.

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