Surrounded by the turquoise blue ocean, Sri Lanka is one of the best surf destinations in the world. Arugambay in the East Coast exudes a laid-back beachside vibe and attracts surfers of all levels and sun-seekers from around the globe. Listed at number eight in Lonely Planet’s Best in Asia, Arugambay provides a total experience with surfing, culture, wildlife and lifestyle. With waves beginning to roll in signifying the start of the surfing season, Arugambay with its numerous surfing points will bound to get you on the waves rolling in the big 2020!
Words Udeshi Amarasinghe.
Photographs BT Images.
With sunny weather and golden beaches, the coastal belt of Sri Lanka is ideal for surfing. As one of the top ten surfing destinations in the world, Arugambay sees surfers thronging to experience the good swells and winds blowing off-shore that create the ideal surfing destination. Pro-surfers including World Champions visit Arugambay, travelling from Europe, USA, Dubai, Australia and many more.
With surfing being introduced into the Olympic Games for the first time in 2020, greater excitement and enthusiasm is felt in Sri Lanka as well. Arugambay has been the host to many international surfing championships over the years. And, over the past year a Sri Lankan national team for surfing has emerged as well, with the team participating in tournaments overseas.
With Arugambay having numerous surfing points that suit the various experience levels of the surfer, there are waves for beginners, amateurs and experienced/professional all through the year. Thus, Arugambay has become a holiday destination not only for pro-surfers but also for young friends, couples and families who are high-spending individuals that appreciate value for money. There are those who travel directly from the airport and spend their vacation in Arugambay and head back from the beach town itself. Furthermore, with a rich culture and history, visitors can always take a short break to discover the surroundings and experience the wildlife that co-exist. The laid-back beach vibe with good music as well as food creates the perfect holiday.
In terms of surfing, Arugambay attracts some of the most professional surfers. Yet, there are surfing points for everyone. Arugambay Main Point is the most popular surfing spot in Arugambay, it has ideal waves for surfing with a long right hand break. The waves are large and strong, thus ideal for more experienced surfers. At Baby Point, the waves are gentle hence, its name, Baby Point.
Madame’s Slap is located close to the Arugambay bridge, this point is located at the tip of the Arugambay Strip. Whisky Point near the Urani village, is a mesmerizing area with the sea spreading far and wide. The waves are ideal swells for beginners and amateurs. But as the season progresses, larger waves can be experienced as well. Pros too enjoy the cheerful waves.
Pottuvil Point, which is adjacent to Whisky Point, has large and strong waves that splash out suddenly, and only experienced surfers take their surfing boards for a spin. Lighthouse (Sangamankanda Point) is located in Komari. It is a scenic beach stretch with a lighthouse. The sea here is rough and it is recommended for pro surfers only.
Towards Panama, Crocodile Rock is ideal for beginners with its soft sands and comfortable swell. It is located at the end of small trek. Elephant Rock has moderate swells that make for a fitting surfing spot for beginners and intermediate surfers. Further along, Peanut Farm is a scenic surf point approached through a grove of beautiful trees. With intermediate waves, Peanut Farm appeals to both beginners and amateur surfers with its exotic natural beauty. Panagala Point in Panama is also known as secret point and getting there itself is an adventure. It is located on a by-road off Panama town.
Panama Point is lesser known and therefore less crowded as well, Panama waves can be a pleasant surprise to the surfer.
Okanda Point situated near the famed Okanda Temple and along the way to Kumana, picks up swells close to the shore and is more suitable for experienced surfers.
The waves are great and the sun is shining in Sri Lanka throughout the year, visit and experience the surf in the East Coast of the island. Arugambay is the place to be!