Being a tropical country located on the equator line, Sri Lanka is a very holiday-friendly destination throughout the year. All you need to know is which side of the country you should focus on during the period which you are planning your holiday in Sri Lanka.
There are two main monsoons that you should keep in mind:
South-western monsoon: rains in the southern and western regions of the island, particularly the coastline, between the months of May and September. In these regions, the dry months are from December to March.
North-east monsoon: affects the north and east coastal regions of Sri Lanka between October and January. The dry season here is from May to September.
Since the island boasts several beach destinations, it is always best to get in touch with a local travel agent for most accurate information. Blue Lanka Tours will be glad to assist you on when is the best time you should visit Sri Lanka for beach tours or for exploring other regions of the country.
When planning your holidays, always understand the ever-changing global weather conditions. Just like in any other country, weather predictions based on monsoons in Sri Lanka can vary from what the met department says. There will be many days when rainy seasons have clear blue skies and dry seasons have random days of torrential rain. Hence don’t just depend on the weather when making your holiday plans. Consider other seasonal offers, school holidays for children, etc, when deciding when to visit Sri Lanka.
Just to give you an idea of what the rain is really like in Sri Lanka:
- Downpours are sharp, yet short
- The rain will rarely last all day
- In extreme but very rare cases, severe rain will cause flooding and may require you to change plans.
Colombo & West Coast
(Bentota, Colombo, Negombo, Kalpitiya)
The best weather in this region is expected from the latter part of November to April the next year. The southwestern monsoon controls the rain here and if heavy rainfall and storm like conditions are predicted, it is best to avoid this coastline. June and September are the months with most rainfall and less rainfall is expected in August. The average temperature throughout the year rarely goes below 30 °C,
(Passikuda, Trincomalee, Arugam Bay, Batticaloa)
While the rest of the island is experiencing rains, (south-west monsoon) the east coast of Sri Lanka boasts the best weather conditions (April to September). Rainfall here is experienced from October to January (northeast monsoon). With several new hotels recently launched on this lesser developed coastline, you have an exceptional opportunity to take advantage of some of the best beaches in Asia.
(Galle, Mirissa, Tangalle, Yala)
The beaches inclined towards the southern coastline of the island have similar weather patterns to that of the west coast. Galle, Mirissa and Tangalle have perfect weather from November to April. Moving east towards Yala, the weather may be influenced by the northeast monsoon, with more rainfall from October to January and dry weather from May to September.
The Cultural Triangle
(Sigiriya, Dambulla, Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa)
The locations of most of the country’s cultural attractions are more towards the center of the island and are categorized under the ‘dry zone’. These regions experience rainfall only in November and December, apart from which the weather remains dry throughout. June and July brings in more heat and strong winds compared to other months.
(Kandy, Ella, Nuwara Eliya, Hatton)
Kandy is situated at a much lower altitude than the other hill country destinations and hence you can enjoy lesser rainfall and higher temperatures. Climbing further up to Nuwara Eliya and Ella, there will be a drop in average temperature and this region is cooler than the rest of the island all year round. Rainfall is expected almost throughout the year but will be lesser from December to May, which is the pilgrimage season for climbing Adam’s Peak.
December to April is the peak season for good weather conditions in most of South-East Asia, and the same applies for a holiday in Sri Lanka. However, the other months also have great weather and guests can take the advantage of low visitors and tour Sri Lanka during those months. Sri Lanka is a year-round holiday destination because the sun will always be shining somewhere on this beautiful island.