Settled in a unique location in the Indian Ocean, between the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea, Sri Lanka is well-known as a treasured island in South Asia for its charming beauty of untouched beaches, breathtaking mountains as well as plenty of mysterious ancient ruins dating back for thousands of years. If you are looking for a perfect time to discover this country, we can help you. Below is our guide about the best time to visit Sri Lanka in 2020 for you. Keep reading to find out.
SRI LANKA WEATHER OVERVIEW
Sri Lanka is a tropical island that has a position close to the Equator and it is impacted by two main monsoon seasons, which is the southwest monsoon, called “Yala” and the northeast monsoon, known as "Maha". Each season affects a different region in this island country.
The Yala monsoon often comes from May to July and only brings rainfall to Sri Lankan west and southwest areas, including Colombo and Galle. Months from May to June are considered the wettest period with short but heavy rains. Humidity can also rise to a sweltering 90% in these months.
The Maha monsoon lasts from October to January and downpours often occur from November to December. This monsoon affects not only the east region but also the whole country. Due to its unstable and unpredictable state, the northeast monsoon can be various in each area and in each year.
WHEN TO VISIT SRI LANKA
Sri Lanka in spring
The spring in Sri Lanka lasts from March to May. March offers the most pleasant climate to visit the central hill, the south, and the southwest but the effect of the monsoon starts at the end of April. During this time, you can travel to north Sri Lanka to explore its highlights including Jaffna, Vanni, Kilinochchi or visit the popular Cultural Triangle.
Bad and humid weather in almost every area in the south in May, except for the mountainous region. Therefore, you can join the Vesak Poya – the most well-known Buddhist celebration feasted in May in the hill area of this country.
Sri Lanka in summer
Sri Lanka's summer occurs from June to August. It's also the perfect time to enjoy your holiday in stunning beaches or visit hot spots in the East and North such as Eravur, Passikudah, Trincomalee, Habarana, and Vavuniya.
In August, the Western area of Sri Lanka Island is often dry and most suitable for family vacations in spite of its hot weather and short rain. Plus, you can take this chance to soak in the fascinating Esala Poya Perahera festival's atmosphere in Kandy at this period of the year.
Sri Lanka in autumn
The fall comes to Sri Lanka from September to November. You still can enjoy the northern and eastern sides in September and at the beginning of October. However, during November, these areas are strongly affected by the ‘Maha’ monsoon season and the weather on the island cannot be predictable so it may not be the best time to travel to Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka in winter
Winter is the last season of Sri Lanka, which lasts from December to February. Although it's winter, this period has less rain and more sunshine with the average temperature only ranging from 24 to 28oC.
Winter months are the ideal time to relax on the marvelous beaches of Unawatuna Bay and Mirissa, discover Galle with its interesting Galle Literary Festival held in late January or early February or the enchanted land of Kandy to visit its renowned Tooth Relic Temple.
BEST TIME TO VISIT SRI LANKA
As you can see, the country of Sri Lanka can be visited around the year. However, the best time to reach Sri Lanka mostly depends on where exactly you want to travel to on the island. Rain can fall at any time of the year, but you can choose the appropriate destination and time to avoid the severe monsoon period.
You can head to the southern and western regions (even Colombo) from December to April to immerse in the most enjoyable weather. Nevertheless, months of December and January are also the peak season in Sri Lanka, especially for Christmas and New Year, so make sure to book your accommodations and airfare early in order not to pick unwanted options.
Winter and spring are regarded as the best time to visit the famous Adam's Peak or enjoy activities on the coast such as snorkeling and whale watching. In summer, you can also see elephant gathering at Minneriya Lake or take part in the exciting Kandy Esala Perahera festival in Central Sri Lanka.