About Unawatuna BeachOn this list of best beaches in Sri Lanka, a name sure to appear is Unawatuna Beach. Just an hour away from Sri Lanka’s capital city, Colombo, this beach is a heaven for beach bums. With fancy restaurants, bars, shacks, beach properties, shopping streets and fun activities worth engaging in that are carried out in the surrounding areas, Unawatuna beach is a great spot to unwind, ditching the routine.
The beach looks like a banana and has golden sand with sparkling water. Here, the lush palm trees not only make the beach look extra scenic but also contribute to keeping the environment pleasant on most days.
On a visit here, one is sure to see young kids belonging to locally residing families take a dip into the cool water of the sea. What a beautiful way for the locals to beat Sri Lanka’s heat, right? And that is not all!
The beach also has arrangements of sunbeds, mats, and umbrellas which also prove to be a blessing for anybody who decides to watch the sun take a dip in the ocean whilst reveling in the sundowner.
Tourists can avail of these sunbeds on rent from vendors that are easily spotted here. The local Sri Lankan culture reflects through various features at the beach. From attractive restaurants that serve finger licking local cuisine to shops that sell trendy clothes influenced by the local attire, this famous beach is worth a few hours of your time!
What Not to Miss at Unawatuna Beach
Unawatuna beach is surrounded by a number of other tourist destinations that unfold unique, beautiful aspects of Unawatuna; such as the history, architecture and culture. To learn about these, tourists can explore below mentioned places -
1. Japanese Peace Pagoda - Japanese Peace Pagoda, as the name suggests is where one must go to discover inner peace. It is located at a distance of just 2 kilometers from the beach and is one of the three main Japanese stupas in Sri Lanka.
It was built by the Japanese monks and remains well maintained even today. In addition to solitude, the stupa also offers panoramic views of the surrounding jungle along with the bay. One can walk up to the stupa or take a tuk tuk ride to reach here.
2. The Jungle Beach - Tourists looking for a less crowded beach may want to head to the Jungle beach which is located on the route opposite to Unawatuna. A small one in size, the beach is surrounded by jungle from all sides. The road to this beach is adventurous and tricky with uneven trails and proves to be a long one if covered on foot.
On the way here, there are bright chances for one to spot peacocks and monitor lizards that certainly add to the fun of visiting this place. Thebeach has ideal weather conditions for swimming as well as snorkeling, as the visibility in the water here is pretty clear.
3. Galle Fort - Considered as one of the most interesting attractions in Unawatuna, this fort is a unique one that remains distinct from other tourist destinations. Instead of the local flavour, one will find Portuguese, Dutch and British influence in the construction style of the fort.
The building offers good sunset views along with that of the lighthouse, the cricket ground, and the clock tower. There are many souvenir shops located around the premises of the fort that are perfect for tourists to go shopping at. Moreover, the wall of the fort is so thick that one can stand on it and enjoy the cool breeze flowing by!Things to do at Unawatuna Beach.
Things to do at Unawatuna Beach
Being an active attraction, there are a number of activities for tourists can indulge in when at Unawatuna beach, some of these are -
1. Go swimming in the ocean - The ocean waters at Unawatuna beach are apt for taking a relaxing dip into the cool water, beating the heat of Sri Lanka. The hot summer day can be spent with loved ones engaging in this activity that is safe and comes for free of cost! What better way of cooling off!
2. Surf the waves - Unawatuna beach is regarded as the best beach to surf; for beginners as well as for experienced surfers. The waves here are perfect and the weather is suitable for surfers to go all out on most days!
3. Take a dip underwater - With crystal clear water, there is no reason for one to not go swimming with the fishes. There are many local service providers located at the beach who provide tourists with required rain and gear that makes the adventure fun and easy!
4. Go fishing - Whether you have gone fishing earlier or not, trying your luck at Unawatuna is certainly a good idea. Especially during sunset, when the sky reflects an uncountable number of hues. The tour companies, service providers located at the beach offer necessary provisions for this activity as well.
Other Essential Information About Unawatuna Beach
Location: A coastal town in the Galle district of Sri Lanka, Unawatuna is a suburb of Galle that is located at a distance of about 5 kilometres southeast to the city center and approximately 108 kilometres south of Sri Lanka’s capital city - Colombo
Timings: Open 24 hours
Facilities: Safe ocean swimming conditions, marine sports training and equipment provisions, yoga centres, spa, and massage centres.
Shopping in Unawatuna Beach:
Right behind Unawatuna beach, there lies a street market that can be tagged as the ultimate go-to place in Unawatuna for shopping lovers. Whether you are a hardcore shopping enthusiast or not, just a stroll around here is sure to make you dig pockets.
From trendy clothes to junk jewellery, from local food vendors to footwear stalls, bags, souvenirs, beach wear, etc. name it and they have it. Shopping in Unawatuna is affordable and more often than not, one is allowed to bargain here with no faces staring awfully. ‘Made is Ceylon’ is a popular gift shop from where one can pick souvenirs for family and friends back home.
Shopping souvenirs is also a great way to store some memories from the trip, so why not? Some of the popular shops in Unawatuna are Sea Horse divers, where one can go for paddle board shopping and also, New world jewelry for jewelry shopping. Shopping lovers can also shop from many local vendors and hawkers that can be spotted around the beach selling little things like junk jewelry or souvenirs.
Nightlife at Unawatuna Beach:
Sri Lanka is not a party hub. But that does not imply that there are no parties that happen in the country. Unawatuna is one place that attracts party lovers from across the globe. With a laid back, relaxed vibe, the beach witnesses the best parties in the country.
With a number of bars and pubs, the whole area of Unawatuna looks pretty lit. When the sun takes a dip into the ocean, all these places attract the crowd and remain open for almost entire nights. Happy Banana, Thaproban Beach House, and Sea View are some of the most renowned bars that showcase the best of nightlife at Unawatuna beach.
Places to Stay near Unawatuna Beach
There are several resorts, hotels, beach properties for tourists looking to stay at or near Unawatuna beach. From luxury traveller to a backpacker, every kind of traveller is sure to find something suitable. Some of the options are listed below
1. Unawatuna Beach Bungalow - As the name suggests, a beach property with the closest proximity to the beach, this property is hosted by super friendly people. The property does not offer high luxury but offers clean rooms and remains well maintained.
The bungalow has an inhouse restaurant from where guests can order meals or for the ones who would like to explore other eateries, choosing this stay is a good idea as there are many fancy bars surrounding the property. With the convenience of the beach, a stay here is highly recommended.
2. Kangaroo Beach Resort - A beachfront property, Kangaroo resort is popular for its location. It is located around tons of eateries, bars and beach shacks that are within walking distance. The resort has large rooms with the hotel being well maintained. The staff is friendly and welcoming.
3. Shore by Hoppas - A 3 Star property, Shore by Hoppa has stylish interiors and well equipped rooms. The property is a great pick for families and large groups. The in house restaurant here serves delicious food and cocktails that are suggested to be tried. The overall vibe of the hotel is pretty great and the pricing is fairly decent.
Places to Eat near Unawatuna Beach
If won’t be wrong to say that Unawatuna is a foodie’s paradise. With a number of restaurants serving different types of cuisines, selecting the best ones can be quite a task. Some of the popular places to eat at and near Unawatuna beach are-
1. Black and White Restaurant - With a lovely ambiance and outdoor seating space, this restaurant is perfect for a lunch date. It is also suitable for enjoying sundowners. The restaurant is popular for serving impeccable seafood, thus it is a must visit for all the sea food lovers. The staff here is super friendly and takes out time to explain about the various local fishes of Unawatuna and the taste one can expect.
2. Happy Spice Restaurant - Tourists can head to this restaurant not just for tasting local authentic Sri Lankan food but also for learning about Sri Lankan cuisine and all its popular dishes. The restaurant serves good portions in terms of quantity and is fairly priced. The ambiance is relaxed and the hygiene level is well maintained.
3. Mettha's Home Cooked Meals Traditional Sri Lanka Restaurant - Perhaps the best restaurant that serves authentic Sri Lankan cuisine at an affordable price, this restaurant is simple with basic settings. It has a very homely vibe to it which attracts tourists. This restaurant is recommended to anybody who would like to taste the authentic food dishes served in the simplest forms.
Tips for visiting Unawatuna Beach:
If you plan on visiting Unawatuna beach, you may want to consider following the below mentioned tips that shall help in making your time here effortless. Read them a read below-
1. Unawatuna Beach is great for swimming, so make sure to carry your swimming costume. The waves are also safe for swimming.
2. The beach has favourable surfing conditions that make it apt for surf time. Beginners who would like to try their hand in this activity can acquire training from many adventure sports companies located at the beach.
3. Tourists looking for party destinations in Sri Lanka must head to Unawatuna beach as it hosts the best parties of Sri Lanka.
4. It is advisable to spend at least two nights here to make the most of your time. There are a number of activities to indulge in, plus there are many places to visit around the beach.
5. The accommodation price at Unawatuna beach can be slightly higher in comparison to other beaches, due to its popularity. Thus, the budget can be allocated accordingly.
6. Food lovers must not miss visiting this beach as it has some of the best bars, lounges, restaurants in Sri Lanka.