Surfing in Sri Lanka dates back to late 1960s when a group of youngsters from Colombo surfed the waves in the island for the very first time in Mount Lavinia ( Source : “Waves from the past”, Daily Mirror, Monday 01 2009). Since then the sport has seen a slow growth until 1990s. With the increased amount of access routes to Sri Lanka lately, travelling surfers found their way to surf the known breaks and discover the new ones in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka, with two main surfing seasons (Nov – April : South & South west coast, May – September : South East coast) has more than 30 surf spots starting from Mount Lavinia in the West coast, along the South coast, to Arugam bay in the East coast. While East coast Arugam bay is known as the surfing capital of Sri Lanka, South coast breaks like Mirissa and Midigama add to the variety of surf spots available in the country. A comprehensive list of surfing spots available around the coasts of Sri Lanka can be found here.
The east coast season produces the most consistent swell (May – Oct). Therefore every year, one or two international surfing events take place in Arugam bay. In 2010 alone, UK Pro surf tour, Christian surfers’ tour, and all more important ASP 6 Star WQS event happened in the East coast, making the dreams of local surfers come true.
Lately there are a couple of National level competitions lately, mainly focusing on Arugam bay,
1) Arugam bay Surf classics : This competiotion involved surfers from Arugam bay and other coasts competing against each other to select the best surfer in the bay. 2011 & 2012 competitions were won by current Sri Lankan number 1 surfer Asanka. The compatition took a pause after 2012.
2) Ride My Wave competition : This was the next major competition organized by Redbull, to recognize the local talent. It is a competition between the South & the East coasts. Each season, the East team or the South team will travel to the other coast to chanllenge the home team. 2013 / 2014 competitions were won by the East team, who will be going to Maldives to challenge their best. More information about this event can be found here.