Arugam Bay

Arugam Bay is one of Sri Lanka’s most popular tourist destinations, especially for surfers and divers, due to its serene beaches. Further inland, its picturesque countryside offers enough and more attractions to fill a travel brochure. Between the wildlife sanctuaries, archaeological sites, beaches and reefs, Arugam Bay earns its reputation as a must-see destination on a trip to Sri Lanka.

The town bounced back from the disastrous tsunami of 2004 to become a hotspot for tourism, bringing much change to what was once a small fishing village. It is now popular among nature lovers, surfers and pretty much all types of holiday-goers. Pay this small town a visit for an unforgettable experience!


Nature lovers will find themselves captivated by the diverse natural life that inhabits the areas around Arugam Bay. Lahugana National Park is one wildlife sanctuary where it is possible to spot herds of wild elephants grazing and basking in the mud. Yala National Park, which is one of Sri Lanka’s most famous national parks, can be found a little further to the south. A safari at Yala will afford tourists with the opportunity to spot boar, deer, crocodiles, elephants and even leopards in the wild. Avid bird-watchers may be familiar with Kumana Bird Sanctuary, which is home to over 200 bird species, and seasonally plays host to an impressive display of migration.


Arugam Bay’s beaches are well known as a surfing destination with competitions held annually, but they are also perfect for beach getaways. Enjoying the evening sunset on the soft white sand is an incomparable experience. Swimming in the ocean is also quite possible at Arugam Bay as the waves are not usually rough, and there are certain areas that are ideal for this.

Cultural sites

The countryside around Arugam Bay is dotted with ancient sites of cultural heritage. One such marvel is the Ruhunu Maha Viharaya, an ancient temple that is over a thousand years old and immersed in history. Walking through the large site can be an enthralling experience of being in another era.