Sri Lanka’s southwest trip is home to gorgeous beaches, colonial towns, traditional stilt fishermen, stunning sunsets and wildlife spotting opportunities. Our favourite spots are Habaraduwa, Koggala, Weligama and Mirissa, but there are also hidden gems in Ahangama and Thalpe.
Weligama is one of the most well-known towns on the southwest coast, thanks to its surf schools and diving centres, with a backpacker vibe and lots of cafés, and Mirissa has a buzzing harbour, Coconut Tree Hill photo spot, and is the place to stay for whale watching. Both towns have a great touristy vibe, but the beaches can get busy in peak season with surfers, and the sea here is quite choppy.
Habaraduwa is lesser-known, has beautiful swimmable beaches, fewer tourists, and is only a 20 mins tuk-tuk to Galle old town if you fancy exploring. Koggala is one of the best places to see the iconic stilt fishermen and is home to Koggala Lake and the south coast’s turtle hatchery.