Things I Did in and Nearby Unawatuna, Sri Lanka

Unawatuna in Sri Lanka is one of the most famous areas in the country. It’s very common that tourists want to spend their vacation in the south of Sri Lanka since it offers the country’s most beautiful beaches. The palm lined beaches, turquoise water with lots of sea turtles, snorkeling and surfing, yoga in the jungle and a good selection of guesthouses and beach shacks is what made us fall in love with Unawatuna.

We stayed in Unawatuna for 9 days which we thought were perfect because then we had time to see everything we wanted since there’s so much activities and things to see nearby. The town is a perfect stay for at least a week in my opinion. Here’s some of the things I really enjoyed in and near the area of Unawatuna!

Surfing at Weligama Beach

Surfing is something you’re able to do anywhere in the south. The south has great beaches for surfing, for example Unawatuna, Dalawella or Weligama beach. I surfed at Weligama beach which is a very good beach for surfing. The whole town of Weligama is famous for its many many surf schools and good waves.

Which was very noticable, you do understand that you’re in Weligama when 99% of the signs on both sides of the road are titled “Surf School”. Literally everyone, from beginners to more skilled surfers enjoy surfing here so either way I really recommend this beach if you’re planning to surf while being in Sri Lanka.

Yoga in the jungle at Sri Yoga Shala

We lived around a 10 minutes walk from a popular Yoga retreat with the name Sri Yoga Shala. It is located in the middle of the jungle and also offers accommodation for those who are truly interested in yoga and want to spend their days in the whole essence of yoga.

At 7.30 every morning people gather outside of the Shala (the place where you practice yoga) to attend the morning flow class. The smell of incense and the sound of the jungle in the background is what makes this class such a harmonic start of the day. Monkeys where jumping in the trees just outside and my whole body felt awake and filled with energy for the day once we had finished our meditation and chamomile tea.

Visiting turtle hatcheries

There’s at least 3 turtle hatcheries in Unawatuna. We visited one of them and got a bit of a tour from their guide. He told us about the different turtle species and about the turtles they had there. The hatcheries you’ll find in Sri Lanka are caring and only doing what’s truly best for the turtles. When locals find a injured one they bring them to the hatcheries and the staff later provide with medicine and give them time to rest before releasing them back to the ocean. They only release them when being certain that the turtles are ready to survive on their own. If you’re interested read my post on releasing baby turtles into the ocean!

Relaxing at Dalawella Beach 

Dalawella beach was the first proper beach we went to after arriving in Sri Lanka. We spent our very first day in Unawatuna at Dalawella which is a smaller beach with the famous rock and palm tree (picture below). I truly recommend the beach hangout called Wijaya beach where you’ll find good views, vibes and pizzas. And if your lucky they’ll have a small market with jewelry, bikinis and beach bags. At our first day we swam with approximately ten sea turtles!! They are so close to the beach and since the water is super clear, you don’t even need a snorkel.

Support locals and their businesses

There’s lots of different fun activities that you’ll easily find on Airbnb or TripAdvisor. At least in this area lots of locals start their own type of business with fun activities for mostly tourists.

We went home to a family where the oldest brother is super talented in woodcarving and made a lot of wood elephants. We paid for watching him make elephants for us and then we went inside with our elephants and painted them. While the paint was drying we went on a walk and the family introduced us to a couple of their neighbors who were also doing a lot of woodcarving. I found it very interesting to come closer to the locals daily life in this area. I always find it important to connect with people, and you always learn so much from having conversations with people who live a different life compared to yourself. 

I hoped you enjoyed reading about the things I did while staying in Unawatuna. If you’re planning a trip to Sri Lanka, don’t miss out on this part of the country. You won’t regret visiting!

Happy Travels


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27 thoughts on “Things I Did in and Nearby Unawatuna, Sri Lanka

  1. Seems interesting place and I think the name is little bit strange. However, I love surfing and would love to visit the beach and enjoy the good waves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! Very interesting and beautiful place to visit. Haha yeah the name is a bit strange when you hear or read it for the first time! I think you’d love Unawatuna! Thank you so much for reading!


  2. Oh wow, it looks lovely! And the turtles are adorable! I could pin all the gorgeous photos of the beach and surfboards!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I did have a really fun time! It truly is something special. Bonding with people who live their life so different from yourself and being able to learn from each other, so love that connection you sometimes are able to discover. That is a memory you’ll never forget. You should really try surfing if you get the chance! It’s so much fun. Thank you so much Athena!

      Liked by 1 person

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