Unawatuna Beach : A Slice of Paradise (උණවටුන මුහුදු වෙරළ)

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Nestled along the sun-kissed shores of Sri Lanka’s southern coast lies a true gem of the Indian Ocean – Unawatuna Beach. This crescent-shaped beach on the south coast is a popular destination for a reason – it offers a vibrant atmosphere with something for everyone.

Unawatuna’s golden sands are perfect for soaking up the sun, building sandcastles, or reading a book with the sound of waves crashing in the background. The clear waters are ideal for swimming, and the presence of lifeguards ensures a safe and relaxing experience.

But Unawatuna isn’t just about lazing around. If you’re feeling adventurous, there’s a plethora of water activities available. Surfing lessons abound for those wanting to catch a wave while snorkelling and diving trips unveil the vibrant coral reefs teeming with marine life. For a unique experience, try a glass-bottom boat tour to admire the underwater world without getting wet.

Or you can climb up to the Buddhist Temple by the Beach on the northern end to the smell of incense sticks and a bird’s eye view of the Unawatuna Beach below. But remember to wear acceptable clothing and take off your shoes when entering any Buddhist place of worship.

Unawatuna satisfies diverse palates with its array of dining options. Along the coastline, beachside cafes and restaurants abound, serving up an enticing selection of fresh seafood delicacies, authentic Sri Lankan dishes, and international cuisine. As night falls, the beach springs to life, buzzing with vibrant beach bars and restaurants that feature live music, creating a hip and inviting atmosphere.

Unawatuna Isn’t Just a Beach Destination

Unawatuna isn’t just a beach destination. The surrounding area offers a variety of cultural experiences.

Rumassala is a mystic hill filled with ancient Ayurvedic medicinal trees. According to folklore, When Rama’s brother Lakshman was near-fatally wounded in battle, there was only scant hope for his life. The Prince’s life could be saved only if certain herbs could be fetched from the Himalayas. Speed was of high essence. Hanuman the Monkey God undertook the mission. At the site, he forgot the names of the herbs.

He broke off the chunk of one mountain, where the herbs occurred. When the chief physician extracted the essential herbs, Hanuman threw away the chunk of the mountain. It fell to the ground and came to be named Rumassala. Ru-mas-sala could be translated as ‘Beautiful Rock’. Incidentally, its present name ‘Buona Vista’, seems an echo of the original meaning, since ‘Buona Vista’ implies, ‘Beautiful Sight’.

It is interesting to note in this context, that, when Arthur C. Clarke came to Sri Lanka (then Ceylon), way back in 1956, he made Unawatuna his first home. The mystery associated with the Rumassala area, may, in all probability, have intrigued him.

Today you could visit the historic Japanese Peace Pagoda at the top of Rumassala overlooking the beach for stunning views and a sense of serenity. Explore the vibrant town with its bustling shops selling souvenirs, handicrafts, and beach essentials. A short walk away, Jungle Beach offers a more secluded escape, perfect for those seeking tranquillity.

Resorts to Lodges

Unawatuna caters to a diverse range of travellers. Luxury resorts offer all the pampering you desire, while guesthouses and budget-friendly options provide comfortable stays. The beach itself has different sections, with some areas livelier with vendors and sun loungers, while others offer a more serene atmosphere.

Also See

Map of Unawatuna Beach

Please click on the button below to load the Dynamic Google Map (ගූගල් සිතියම් පහලින්)

The map above also shows other places of interest within a approximately 20 km radius of the current site. Click on any of the markers and the info box to take you to information of these sites

Zoom out the map to see more surrounding locations using the mouse scroll wheel or map controls.

Traveling Directions to Unawatuna Beach

Route from Colombo to Unawatuna Beach
Via: Southern Expressway
Distance :131 km
Travel time : 2.15 hours
Driving directions : see on Google map

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