“Rocking up to a golden-sand beach in a tuk-tuk, surfing beautiful tropical waves in 29ºC water, cracking open a coconut to rehydrate and replenish – really, right now, there’s nowhere better to surf.” As the co-founder of Soul & Surf, one of the newest surf camps to open on the Sri Lanka coast, you would expect Joe Coyne to say that of his patch.
Still, even without his boostering, the southern beaches of the country have quietly become the hottest surf scene in Asia. Why? “User-friendly conditions,” says Coyne. While swell is best from October to April, there’s a rookie-friendly wave almost every day of the year. “It never gets flat or too big – it’s perfect for beginners.” A new wave of smarter stays have helped, too. In addition to Soul & Surf, Camp Poe is a chill, yoga-surf retreat in Ahangama.
There’s also Swedish couple Petter and Linn’s super-stylish Ceylon Sliders in Weligama. Higher-end options include the new, super-luxe Anantara Peace Haven in Tangalle, which has a surf school run by Tropicsurf. “But,” says Surf South Sri Lanka’s Julian Runnette, “my favourite is Lion’s Rest. Sitting on the terrace with a cold beer at sunset with a view of Coconuts Break – really, there’s nothing like it.”