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26 Sep

Mirissa Beach and Beyond – Top Things to Do in Mirissa

Mirissa Beach is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Sri Lanka, if not, the world. So where exactly is it, what can you do there and why all the fuss about this place?

These are some of the questions we hope to answer in this post, so read on.

History and Background

Mirissa is a small town on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, located approximately 150 kilometres south of Colombo.

Traditionally known for being a fishing port, in recent years, it has emerged as a top, ‘must visit’ tourist destination.

But why?

Clean, white sandy beaches; crystal clear waters, teeming with marine life; and big waves, might have something to do with it. Whether you’re a surfer, someone who likes to go snorkelling, or simply love to chill in a hammock and watch the sun set, Mirissa Beach has got you covered.

Little wonder then that people flock there in great numbers.

Dotted with bars, restaurants and accommodation ranging from exotic boutique hotels to family-run home-stays, Mirissa can cater to more or less everyone’s tastes and needs.

You can also visit a turtle hatchery or snake farm (in neighbouring Weligama) and even go whale and dolphin watching. Plus, Mirissa is relatively close to many other attractions and places of interest such as Galle and Unawatuna.

Top Things to do in and Around Mirissa

Now that you know where it is and why it’s a big deal, let’s get into some specifics and see what there is to do around there.

Enjoy the Spectacular Sunsets


The sunsets in Mirissa are nothing short of spectacular. So Mirissa Beach is the perfect place from which to salute the Sun – ideally, from your hammock with a nice cocktail in hand.

Visit Coconut Tree Hill


Photo by Sachin Kaveesha Fernando / CC BY 2.0

If you’ve ever seen a picture of Mirissa, there’s a good chance that it features the iconic ‘Coconut Hill’.

Coconut Hill is a hilly part of a coconut estate that juts out into the Indian Ocean. This unique feature means that you’re going to have an excellent 180 degree view.

Go there at sunset to experience (and capture) Mirissa’s epic sunsets.

Visit Parrot Rock

Parrot Rock is another attraction that bears mentioning, while on the subject of sunsets (and even sunrises). It’s a small rocky island just off the main beach and offers panoramic views.

The sunsets here are meant to be some of the best that Mirissa has to offer. And in a place where epic sunsets are fairly commonplace, that’s really saying something.

So if you’re willing to wade, get wet and do some climbing, you’ll be well rewarded for your labour.

Go Surfing


Photo by Dan Arndt / CC BY 2.0

Mirissa has big waves and clean, warm waters. There are plenty of surfing schools too, making it the perfect place for surfer dudes and dudettes. So whether you’re a novice or a seasoned pro, you can have fun surfing in Mirissa.

Visit the ‘Secret’ Beach

Quite possibly the most public ‘secret’ ever (with its location now on Google Maps), the Secret Beach is one of Mirissa’s top attractions.

But we understand that it’s a bit like Marmite – you’ll either love it or hate it.

Some like the fact that it’s small and cosy, and has a cafe right there on the beach (with reasonable prices), while some others say it’s cramped, hard to get to, and nothing to write home about at all.

You’ll just have to go there and decide for yourself.

Enjoy Life on the Beach

Whether it’s taking a leisurely stroll at dawn and enjoying the feeling of the wind in your hair; topping up your tan under the hot tropical sun; or just chilling with a good book, this is the place to do it.


There are plenty of bars on and around the beach, and when the sun goes down, it’s party time! So grab yourself a partner, and perhaps a cocktail, and get ready to dance the night away!

Go Whale Watching


Photo by Dan Lundberg / CC BY 2.0

Mirissa is famous for whale watching as these animals migrate to the area to breed. There are boat tours that will take you out to sea from where you can observe blue whales and dolphins enjoying the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.

Visit Galle

Ok, so it’s not technically Mirissa Beach, but since Galle is so near (36km) and only about an hour away, it’s probably worth considering a day trip there.


Photo by Rovin Shanila / CC BY 2.0

You can see the Dutch Fort, the Galle Lighthouse, check out the shops and dine at one of the excellent restaurants there.


Photo by Nipuna Gamage / CC BY 2.0

The trip takes roughly about an hour each way, so you can even make it back in time for sunset.

Hangover Hostels Mirissa

Our Mirissa Hostel is located across the road from Mirissa Beach and our Cafe (Hangover Cafe), is the best cafe on the Southern Coast of Sri Lanka!

So if you’re looking for top class accommodation, right next to Mirissa Beach, with excellent food and facilities, then look no further!

We also provide (or can arrange):

  • yoga classes;
  • surfing lessons;
  • bicycle rentals;
  • parties;
  • barbecues; and
  • pub-crawls.

So you’ll never be at a loss for things to do, even if you tire of the beach!

This video will give you a quick tour of a rough idea of just some of what we have to offer.

Please get in touch if you have any questions at all.

We may be able to help with airport pick ups, transfers and organising tours – just ask us closer to the time and we’ll do our best to help.

If you’d like to book, we offer a 10% discount when you book directly through us.

Safe travels, and we look forward to seeing you soon!

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