6 Sri Lanka destinations for escaping peak season crowds

Visiting Sri Lanka in January, February and March guarantees travellers fantastic weather, amazing wildlife and endless alluring tropical beaches where you can swim, surf, snorkel and sail. However, as these months are the peak season for holidaymakers in Sri Lanka, you can also be sure of some crowds in the most popular tourist haunts.

Escape the peak season crowds without compromising on your trip at these 6 Sri Lanka destinations that are away from the typical tourist trail.

1. Kalpitiya

This north-western beach town is just two hours from the airport and yet is another world compared to the well-worn Galle Coast. In Kalpitiya, time moves at a leisurely pace, and days are spent kite-surfing on the lagoon, lounging on the beach and sailing in search of dolphins.

2. Jaffna

Sat at the very top of the island, Jaffna is seen as an inconvenient addition to a Sri Lanka itinerary, but it is easily reachable from Colombo either via a scenic train ride or short flight. Jaffna has a fascinating unique micro-culture with ties to southern Indian traditions.

3. Knuckles

Just an hour outside of the thriving city of Kandy, Knuckles Mountain Range is a hiker’s paradise. Few people, beautiful hotels, incredible views and diverse wildlife make this an unforgettable and blissfully peaceful way to experience Sri Lanka’s famous tea country.

4. Gal Oya

Wildlife lovers look no further – Gal Oya National Park is a patchwork of lakes, woodland and rocky outcrops home to a wide variety of wildlife. Go on sunset boat rides, climb ‘Monkey Mountain’ and walk the woods with an expert guide. Remote, tranquil and rewarding.

5. Haputale

Another way to experience Sri Lanka’s tea hills without the crowds is to stay in Haputale on the south-eastern fringes of the island’s central hill country. Iconic scenic spots such as Lipton’s Seat and Ravana Falls are within easy reach, but you will feel totally away from it all.

6. Dickwella

Dickwella Beach is hidden between Matara and Tangalle on Sri Lanka’s serene south coast. Stay in secluded clifftop villas; swim and stroll the golden beach, and surf at neighbouring Hiriketiya Bay. Nearby beach cafés offer local dishes, vegan options and great live music.