A fishing village turned beach resort on the south coast of Sri Lanka, Weligama’s star attraction is its wide sandy bay that’s perfect for beach bums and wannabe surfers. Whether you want to roll directly from the beach bar to your bed, or hide away at an Ayurvedic spa, your version of “me time” awaits. Find your ideal Weligama stay here.
Weligama Bay Marriott Resort & Spa
Courtesy of Weligama Bay Marriott Resort and Spa / Expedia
The high-rise Weligama Bay Marriott Resort & Spa dominates the town’s skyline, giving guests the very best views of the bay. Better still, each room has a balcony overlooking the Indian Ocean, as well as a marble bathroom with an oversized soaking tub. You’ll find more opportunities to make a splash at the hotel’s three pools – one for kids, one for relaxation and one for practising your butterfly stroke.
Looking for a home away from home? You’ll find one at the far western edge of Weligama Bay. Family-run Dinsara Pearl Villa features clean rustic rooms and splendid ocean views – all for excellent value for money. Your friendly hosts can help organise whale-watching tours (from November to April, when you might glimpse five kinds of whales and four kinds of dolphin) or land-based adventures on tuk-tuks to nearby sights. Alternatively, you could just spend your days here watching the horizon from a hammock.
Night owls will like W15 Weligama – the restaurant is one of few in town that stays open later than 10pm (don’t miss the wood-fired pizzas). There’s also a 13-metre cocktail bar and live DJs every night. Come morning, roll out of bed onto a sun lounger by the beachfront pool, or head straight to the waves for a surf lesson.
What Cape Weligama lacks in beach access, it more than makes up for with its clifftop position and plethora of luxuries – from a crescent-shaped infinity pool overlooking the Indian Ocean to expansive suites complete with steam rooms and freestanding stone tubs. The food at this Resplendent Ceylon resort (one of Sri Lanka’s foremost hotel groups) is exquisite. Book the Chef’s Table experience or try the breakfast at Kumbuk Café for an introduction to traditional Sri Lankan dishes, such as habala pethi (rice porridge) and hoppers (pancakes).
Sainan’s Boutique Villa is a 20-minute walk from the centre of Weligama and only a few minutes away from the less-crowded Jungle Beach. Run by a friendly young couple, the five bungalows open onto a pretty, palm-filled garden. Hungry? Sainan’s substantial breakfasts should keep you pleasantly full until the evening – which is when you should try the fresh seafood at nearby restaurant Turtle Bay.
Though sitting in the shadow of its luxurious neighbour, the Marriott, Weligama Bay Resort still holds its own, offering great-value rooms, a dip-worthy pool and dreamy ocean views. Surfboard rental is available – but if that sounds like too much hard work, you can always watch the waves from the beachfront restaurant or a sun lounger on the sand, ice-cold cocktail in hand.
Want a beachfront location usually reserved for big resorts, but with the personal service of a boutique hotel? Then try Elephant Stables Weligama Bay. The six high-ceilinged rooms are ideal for families – some have bunk beds. No alcohol is available at the hotel, but you’re welcome to bring your own – there’s a decent-sized fridge waiting in each room. However, once you’ve tried the divine homemade mint lemonade, you may declare yourself teetotal.
Solo travellers, couples and families will all find a warm welcome at Weligama Ocean Breeze. Situated across the road from the centre of Weligama Beach, the hotel is close to the action, but still whisper quiet. Its 10 rooms are simple but comfortable (and priced accordingly), while the enclosed garden features a kid-friendly pool and wooden swings. Be sure to request a free cooking lesson, available with dinner if you book in advance.
If wellness is at the top of your agenda, look no further than an Ayurvedic stay at Ayurvie Weligama. Bright white rooms come with chakra-inspired art and herbal tea mini bars. Stays are all-inclusive and vegetarian – you won’t be disappointed with the daily feasts. Start your day with sunrise yoga before indulging in a massage on the beach, or get a consultation with an Ayurvedic doctor who will tailor your treatments to your needs.