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Surf Camps in Sri Lanka: Top Choices for Soul Riders

Sri Lanka, a tropical paradise in the Indian Ocean, has become a popular destination for surfing enthusiasts around the world. With its diverse coastline offering a variety of wave conditions and picturesque scenery, Sri Lanka lures surfers of all skill levels to embark on thrilling surfing adventures. Surfing camps have sprung up across the island, providing ample opportunities for novices and experienced surfers alike to hone their skills, meet like-minded individuals, and immerse themselves in the country’s rich culture.

One of Sri Lanka’s most renowned surfing spots is the south-west coast, where surfers can find popular breaks like Gallé, Lazy Left (Midigama), Matara, North Jetty (Hikkaduwa), Unawatuna Bay and Weligama. On the other hand, the south-east coast offers the surfing mecca of Arugam Bay, which hosts annual international surfing competitions. Whether searching for a DIY surf camp experience at Whisky Point Resort or looking for a luxurious and all-inclusive surf camp like Dreamsea, surfers are spoiled for choices amidst Sri Lanka’s vibrant surfing scene.

Catering to various preferences and budgets, Sri Lanka surf camps often offer diverse packages that might include accommodations, daily lessons, surfboard rentals, and even yoga sessions. Some surf camps also foster a lively social atmosphere, with parties and dinners serving as the perfect chance to connect with fellow surfers from around the globe. As Sri Lanka’s surf culture and offerings continue to grow, there has never been a better time to plan a surf adventure on this captivating island.

Top Surfing Camps in Sri Lanka


Weligama surf camps

Weligama is a popular surfing destination on Sri Lanka’s southwest coast. With its sandy beaches and beginner-friendly waves, surfers of all skill levels can enjoy the water. One of the top surf camps in Weligama is The Surfer Beach Camp. This camp offers surf lessons and accommodation with stunning ocean views.

Arugam Bay

Arugam Bay surf camps

Arugam Bay is known as the surfing mecca on Sri Lanka’s southeastern coast. Hosting annual international surfing competitions, this spot is perfect for experienced surfers looking for a challenge. Safa Surf Camp is a popular choice among surfers visiting Arugam Bay, offering a DIY surf camp experience during the summer season (May-Sept).


Mirissa surf camps

Mirissa, located on Sri Lanka’s southern province, is home to Surf & Yoga Mirissa, a surf camp that provides both surf-only and surf and yoga combination programs. The camp caters to all levels of surfers, offering regular and private camps that range from four to fifteen days.


Ahangama surf camps

Ahangama, on Sri Lanka’s South Coast, is witnessing a rise in surf culture. Dreamsea Surf Camp is our top pick for the best overall surf camp in Sri Lanka. The beachfront resort offers two-hour surf lessons six days a week, catering to surfers of various skill levels.


Hikkaduwa surf camps

Hikkaduwa is known for its North Jetty surf spot and diverse marine life. While there are several surf camps in the area, Elsewhere Surf Camps stands out as a top choice for backpackers and surfers seeking a fun, social environment to learn and practice their skills.


Raiyans, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Kalpitiya, located on the west coast of Sri Lanka, is a popular destination for kitesurfing and windsurfing. Many surf camps offer comprehensive kitesurfing lessons and windsurfing lessons, allowing water sports enthusiasts to fully embrace the Kalpitiya experience.


Unawatuna surf camps

Unawatuna, known for its picturesque bay and golden sandy beach, is a favored surfing spot on the southwest coast. The popular Surf camps guide surfers through lessons conducted in a serene environment where they can truly connect with the ocean.

Types of Surfing Camps


For Beginners

Sri Lanka offers various surf camps tailored to beginners who want to learn the basics of surfing in an affordable and supportive environment. These surf camps provide lessons, equipment, and experienced instructors to guide new surfers through the process. A popular destination for beginner surfers is Weligama on the south coast, known for its gentle waves and sandy beaches.

Some beginner-friendly surf camps in Sri Lanka also integrate yoga sessions into their programs, providing physical and mental balance alongside surfing. This combination helps beginners to improve their core strength, flexibility, and focus, ultimately enhancing their overall surfing experience.

For Intermediates

Intermediate surfers can find surf camps in Sri Lanka that cater to their skill level, with access to more challenging waves and in-depth coaching. These camps help surfers improve their technique, master new maneuvers, and tackle bigger waves.

A well-known spot for intermediates is Arugam Bay, located on the east coast of Sri Lanka. Arugam Bay hosts international surfing competitions and offers a variety of waves suitable for intermediate surfers. Surf camps in this area often provide guided surf tours and video analysis feedback to help intermediates refine their skills.

For Experienced Surfers

Sri Lanka’s diverse surf breaks and landscapes make it an ideal destination for experienced surfers seeking to push their limits. Surf camps tailored to advanced surfers focus on unlocking the full potential of their guests, providing access to world-class waves, professional coaching, and customized training programs.

Locations such as Bennys at Arugam Bay and Lazy Left at Midigama are popular among experienced surfers for their powerful swell and challenging waves. These surf camps are designed to help advanced surfers hone their skills and enjoy an adrenaline-pumping experience in the beautiful landscapes of Sri Lanka.

Surf Schools and Lessons

Surf Schools

Sri Lanka is an ideal destination for surfers of all levels, providing numerous surf schools offering a wide range of courses and facilities. Some of the renowned surf schools in the country include Lapoint Sri Lanka and Nomad Surfers Surf Camp. These surf schools offer professional coaching, state-of-the-art surfboards, and all necessary safety gear.

Surf schools in Sri Lanka often cater to both beginners and experienced surfers. In addition to the technical aspect of surfing, they focus on teaching safety, environmental awareness, and local surf etiquette. Many schools also organize social events, offering a great opportunity to meet fellow surfers and make new friends in the surfing community.

Surf Lessons

Sri Lanka offers surfing lessons for surfers of all skill levels. Beginners can opt for group or private lessons to gain confidence and develop their fundamental surfing techniques. Intermediate surfers can benefit from tailored coaching sessions focusing on specific areas of improvement, while advanced surfers can receive guidance from experts to hone their skills further.

Surf lessons in Sri Lanka usually cover the following aspects:

  • Fundamentals of surfing and wave knowledge
  • Surfboard handling and maintenance
  • Paddling techniques and catching waves
  • Pop-up technique and stance on the surfboard
  • Turning and trimming techniques
  • Reading and understanding surf conditions and hazards

In addition to surf lessons, many schools and camps also offer surfboard rental services to travelers. This ensures that you can enjoy the thrill of surfing in Sri Lanka without the hassle of carrying your surfboard. Several surf schools also offer yoga and meditation classes, allowing you to unwind and relax after an exhilarating day in the waves.

To summarize, Sri Lanka offers a diverse range of surf schools and lessons that cater to the needs of surfers at all skill levels. Participating in these classes allows you to not only improve your surfing skills but also to fully immerse yourself in the captivating Sri Lankan surf culture.

Accommodations and Amenities

Surfing Camps in Sri Lank

Dorms and Private Rooms

Sri Lanka surf camps offer various accommodation options, including dorms and private rooms. Dormitories provide affordable and social lodging for those who want to meet fellow surfers, while private rooms cater to guests seeking more privacy and comfort. Many surf camps, such as Layback Surf & Yoga Camp Sri Lanka, offer stylish and cozy rooms within walking distance to beach breaks.

Food and Dining

Surf camps in Sri Lanka often provide a range of dining options, such as included daily meals or communal kitchen facilities for guests to use. Meals typically highlight fresh local ingredients and flavors, from delicious Sri Lankan curries to fresh tropical fruits. Some camps may also offer international dishes, catering to a diverse array of palates.

Pools and Wellness Facilities

Many surf camps in Sri Lanka feature pools and wellness facilities to enhance the guests’ experience. Swimming pools, for relaxation or exercise, may be on-site or accessible nearby, depending on the camp. Wellness facilities can include yoga classes, meditation spaces, and massage therapies to help guests rejuvenate between surfing sessions.

Communal Areas and Entertainment

Communal spaces are an essential aspect of surf camps in Sri Lanka, fostering a sense of camaraderie among guests. These areas can range from outdoor lounges with hammocks and bean bags to indoor shared living spaces with games, books, and entertainment. Evening activities and events, such as barbecues, movie nights, or live music, may also be organized to create a vibrant and inclusive atmosphere for everyone.

Top Surfing Spots in Sri Lanka

Surfing Camps in Sri Lank

Beaches and Reefs

Sri Lanka is blessed with a diverse coastline that offers fantastic surfing opportunities for surfers of all skill levels. The beaches have soft sand and crystal-clear waters, while the reefs surrounding the island provide a variety of waves and challenging breaks for more experienced surfers. Some prime examples of these surfing spots include the Hiriketiya Beach and the southwestern coast, which is home to popular destinations like Gallé, Matara, Hikkaduwa, and Unawatuna Bay.

Popular Surfing Breaks

  • Hiriketiya Beach: Known for its picture-perfect palm-fringed shores and two great waves for all skill levels, Hiriketiya Beach is a top surfing destination in Sri Lanka. You can experience both beach and reef breaks at this location.
  • Southwest Coast: The southwest coast boasts a range of excellent surf spots, including:
    • Lazy Left (Midigama): A mellow left-hand reef break suitable for intermediate surfers. It offers long rides and a laid-back atmosphere.
    • North Jetty (Hikkaduwa): An intermediate reef break, North Jetty offers consistent waves that cater to both short and longboarders.
    • Weligama: This beach break is suitable for beginners, with gentle waves and a sandy bottom. It’s also a great spot for longboarding.
  • Arugam Bay: As the surfing mecca of Sri Lanka, Arugam Bay hosts international competitions and attracts surfers worldwide. Some popular breaks in the area include:
    • Main Point: A powerful left-hand reef break that offers long rides, Main Point is best suited for experienced surfers.
    • Sticks: Featuring an easier left-hand break, Sticks is perfect for beginners and intermediate surfers.
    • Marshmallow: Known for its soft, forgiving waves, Marshmallow offers fun right-hand reef break for surfers of all levels.

When searching for the ideal Sri Lankan surfing spot, factors such as your skill level, preferred break type, and nearby facilities should be considered. With so many diverse locations to choose from, you’re sure to find the perfect place to ride the waves and enjoy the picturesque beauty of Sri Lanka’s coastline.

Travel and Transportation

Getting to Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka, a renowned surf destination, is located on the southern coast of the island nation. The main international airport in Sri Lanka is Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB), situated near the capital city, Colombo. Travelers can book direct flights from various countries, or opt for stopovers in the Middle East or Asia.

Upon arrival at Colombo, visitors can either take a domestic flight to the Southern Province or choose ground transportation options like buses, trains, or taxis to reach the key surf destinations. Colombo to Matara, a well-known surf hotspot in the southwest coast, is approximately 160 kilometers and can be covered by train in about 3.5 hours.

Getting Around

Sri Lanka is home to a diverse cultural heritage, magnificent tea plantations, and incredible surf spots along the southern coastline. Exploring the country and getting around is convenient with local tuk-tuk rides. These are a popular and affordable way to reach nearby surf breaks, and generally cost between 1000-3000 rupees ($7-$20 USD) round trip for a few hours of surfing.

For those in search of surf guiding and instruction, various surf camps on the southern and southwestern coasts provide these services. While some camps specifically target inexperienced surfers, others accommodate both beginners and advanced wave-riders. Arugam Bay, on the southeast coast, is recognized as the mecca of surfing in Sri Lanka, hosting international competitions and attracting surf enthusiasts from around the world.

In conclusion, Sri Lanka’s south and southwest coasts offer a myriad of exciting surf spots for travelers to explore. With relatively accessible transportation and a range of surf camps to choose from, it’s an ideal destination for surfers of all skill levels.

Best Time to Visit

Sri Lanka, located in South Asia, offers an excellent surfing experience with its warm water along the stunning coastline of the Indian Ocean. The island nation boasts picturesque beaches lined by coconut palms and waves suited for both beginner and expert surfers.

Two main surfing seasons dominate Sri Lanka, based on the direction of the monsoons affecting the east and south-west coasts. During the summer months from May to September, the east coast experiences a dry season, making it the ideal time for surfers to visit popular spots like Arugam Bay. The south-west coast, on the other hand, becomes more suitable for surfing between November and April due to its own dry season. This allows surfers to explore the renowned Hiriketiya beach break, ideal for beginners looking to learn-to-surf on mellow waves.

Given that Sri Lanka is a year-round surfing destination, the best time to visit would be based on the individual surfer’s preferences and the coast they wish to explore. Keep in mind that the waves and conditions may vary throughout the season, making it important to ensure that the chosen surfing camp caters to your specific skill level and desired challenges.

In summary, the surfing experience in Sri Lanka is greatly influenced by the direction of the monsoons, with the east coast being favorable during the summer months and the south-west coast surf-friendly between November and April. With its tropical climate, warm water, and picturesque setting, Sri Lanka is an ideal destination for surfers looking for an unforgettable and unique experience in the Indian Ocean.

Additional Activities and Attractions

In addition to the exhilarating surf sessions, many Sri Lanka surf camps offer a variety of other activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy. One popular option is yoga sessions, which can complement the physical demands of surfing by helping to enhance balance, flexibility, and mental focus.

When not riding the waves, guests can explore the beautiful surroundings of popular surf spots like Weligama Bay, known as the surf mecca of Sri Lanka, boasting numerous surf points and picturesque beaches. The nearby Matara Road allows for easy access to the famous surf break called The Rock, while also providing convenient transportation to more secluded locations like Peanut Farm and Okanda.

Apart from surfing, many surf camps in Sri Lanka offer a rich cultural experience by organizing local parties and events, giving visitors the opportunity to mingle with fellow travelers and immerse themselves in the local atmosphere. Moreover, some camps may also hold surf theory sessions, allowing guests to gain valuable insights into the sport and its techniques.

Nature enthusiasts can venture off the coast to partake in adrenaline-pumping safaris at beautiful national parks like Yala, which are often organized by surf camps as an alternative activity. However, visitors should be aware of the ongoing COVID-19 situation and follow necessary precautions while engaging in any activity, ensuring a safe and enjoyable stay in Sri Lanka.

For surfers seeking a more laid-back experience, Sri Lanka also offers plenty of mellow waves suitable for all skill levels. Beginners and intermediate surfers can practice their skills in a less challenging environment, providing a well-rounded surf vacation experience.

In summary, a surf camp in Sri Lanka offers not only exhilarating surf sessions but a variety of additional activities and attractions, making it the perfect destination for a getaway that caters to everyone’s interests.

R. Wallace
R. Wallace
A digital nomad travelling in Asia and TheDigitalNomad.Asia Editor. Please read my article and I hope you will get inspired to go travelling as a digital nomad. You are welcome to comment and share the article with fellow travelers.

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