The varied climate makes it difficult to decide when to travel to Sri Lanka, so tourists go there all year round. Indeed, the country has two seasons, the dry and the rainy season, something to bear in mind.
Best time to travel to Sri Lanka
In general, the best time to visit Sri Lanka is between December and March, which is when it is the dry season.
Moreover, the high tourist season is between December and March, coinciding with the dry season. This time of year is perfect for visiting the beaches of the south and the west, as well as the highlands. The mid-season goes from April to October, where April and September are the best options for visiting. You won’t find as many tourists, and there still isn’t a lot of rain, so you will be able to enjoy the trip. During the low tourist season, between May and August, the monsoon falls on the south west coast, so it is worth visiting the north and east of the country.
To summarise, Sri Lanka has a tropical monsoon climate, with an average temperature of 28ºC throughout the year. You will find two rainy seasons, one due to the monsoon of the south west between May and September. The other wet season goes from October to April and is due to the monsoon of the north east. October and November are the wettest months, so it is worth avoiding them.
Within the dry season, February is the driest month, so you will be guaranteed to have the best weather for visiting the country. On the other hand, if you’re going to the west and south coast of Sri Lanka, the ideal months are from December to April. To visit the east coast, however, it is better to travel between April and September. In July and August, the monsoon will have finished in the south west of the country, so it will be a good time to visit it.
Now, let’s look at when to travel to Sri Lanka depending on the region you want to visit. As you have seen, the climate varies from one place to another.
When to travel to the south west of Sri Lanka
If the aim of your trip is to visit the beaches of the south west of this beautiful country, it is preferable to choose January, February and March. You will have dry and very sunny days until April, which is when the monsoon starts in this region.
Avoid the months from May to August, the monsoon rains will be at their peak in the area. In September the monsoon reaches its end, although there is still some rain until December. The dry season in this part of Sri Lanka starts in mid-December.
When to travel to the north east of Sri Lanka
The first months of the year, between January and March, the monsoon is present in this region. April continues to be rainy, so the dry season doesn’t start until May, and lasts until August. This period is the most suitable for visiting this area, including its beaches.
Between September and December, the monsoon arrives from the north east, so this time of year is when the most rain falls in the region. It isn’t worth visiting the area at this time due to the high probability of flooding.
When to travel to the central region of Sri Lanka
Between January and April is the dry season in the central part of the country, so it is the best time to discover its wonders. If you want to visit the World Heritage’s Cultural Triangle, visit Sri Lanka during these months.
From May, up to and including August, the temperatures are good and there is still no rain. Thanks to the winds that blow in the region, the monsoon from the south west isn’t able to affect the area. Remember though that the warmest months are June and July.
From September to December however, the rains arrive in the central region, although they are not too heavy. Therefore, avoid travelling to the central region during these months if you don’t want to ruin your visit.
When to travel to the mountainous region of Sri Lanka
To visit the mountains, the best time is during the dry season (January, February, March and April). There is no rain and, although the temperatures are a little cooler due to the altitude, they are still pleasant.
From May to August, the rains appear in the mountains, although they are still not heavy or frequent. This time continues to be an optimum time to visit this region. Finally, between September and December is when most rain falls in this area of the country. If you want to visit the famous city of Ella and its tea plantations, avoid these months.
Now you know when to travel to Sri Lanka to have the best weather conditions and enjoy your visit fully.