Seasons in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is the island state. It is located almost on the equator and have tropical monsoon climate. It’s called “land of eternal summer” for reason. Minor shifts of temperature through the year and high humidity create great weather conditions for vacations of all sorts.

Seasons shift occurs twice a year under influence of monsoons. North-east which lasts from November to April brings lesser amount of precipitation. At May it is changed by south-west monsoon. This “guy” brings hard and heady tropical showers and remains until October. But showers of Sri Lanka for some reason prefer nighttime and days are relevantly dry even in the midst of rainy season.


Weather and Climate

Spring in Sri Lanka

March on Sri Lanka is great time for vacation on Sri Lanka. Rainy season is yet to come and heist of tourist’s season is already gone. Weather is warm and sunny and occasional rains as mentioned above are mainly fall at night. April is quite similar to March in terms of weather conditions.

At May south-western regions of the island are falling under influence of south-western monsoon. However north-eastern portion of the island is protected by mountains so weather here stays as pleasant as it was before season shift. Average temperature remains about 300C (860F) on whole island.

The climate of the spring months

(Colombo)

March
Max average t°: +32 °C (89 °F)
Min average t°: +23 °C (74 °F)
Water t°: +29 °C (84 °F)
Sundial in the day: 10 hours
Rainy days: 9 days
Precipitation: 110 mm (4.3")
April
Max average t°: +32 °C (89 °F)
Min average t°: +24 °C (76 °F)
Water t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Sundial in the day: 8 hours
Rainy days: 12 days
Precipitation: 139 mm (5.4")
May
Max average t°: +31 °C (87 °F)
Min average t°: +25 °C (77 °F)
Water t°: +29.5 °C (85 °F)
Sundial in the day: 7 hours
Rainy days: 14 days
Precipitation: 248 mm (9.8")

Spring holidays

(Dates to 2018)

March 1 – Madin Full Moon Poya Day.
March 30 – Good Friday.
March 31 – Bak Full Moon Poya Day.

April 13 – Day prior to Sinhala & Tamil New Year Day.
April 14 – Sinhala & Tamil New Year Day.
April 29 – Vesak Full Moon Poya Day.
April 30 – Day following Vesak Full Moon Poya Day.

May 1 – May Day.
May 29 – Adhi Poson Full Moon Poya Day.

Summer in Sri Lanka

Summer is the time of reign of south-western monsoon. Several hours of each day are time of rain. Usually they start to fall after sunset but by dawn all streets are dry again. Average temperature is about 320C (900C) but extreme humidity makes it feel more like 360C (970F). Ocean is warm (270C; 810F) but swimming isn’t always available due to winds and excitement of the sea. In addition southern part of island occasionally suffers destructive hurricanes.

Western portion of Sri Lanka has quite opposite conditions. Summer here is dry and sunny. All of nature’s seasonal raging stays on the other side of mountains.

The climate of the summer months

(Colombo)

June
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +25 °C (77 °F)
Water t°: +28 °C (82 °F)
Sundial in the day: 6 hours
Rainy days: 20 days
Precipitation: 290 mm (11.4")
July
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +25 °C (77 °F)
Water t°: +27.5 °C (81.5 °F)
Sundial in the day: 6.5 hours
Rainy days: 19 days
Precipitation: 289 mm (11.4")
August
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +25 °C (77 °F)
Water t°: +27.5 °C (81.5 °F)
Sundial in the day: 6 hours
Rainy days: 19 days
Precipitation: 370 mm (11.4")


Summer holidays

(Dates to 2018)

June 15 – Id Ul-Fitr.
June 27 – Poson Full Moon Poya Day.

July 27 – Esala Full Moon Poya Day.

August 22 – Id Ul-Alha.
August 25 – Nikini Full Moon Poya Day.

Autumn in Sri Lanka

Autumn is relatively calm period of weather in Sri Lanka. Monsoon showers are changing by so called zenithal rains. They are less intensive than monsoon showers but usually start to fall at noon. November brings seasonal shift of winds. North-east monsoon brings humid air masses from Bengal Bay and slopes of central highland receive their portion of precipitation. South-western part of Sri Lanka stays untouched protected by mountains.

November is the heist of tourist’s season. Weather is hot but humidity is moderate so overall staying on the island is rather comfortable especially by the sea.

The climate of the autumn months

(Colombo)

September
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +25 °C (76 °F)
Water t°: +28 °C (82 °F)
Sundial in the day: 6 hours
Rainy days: 17 days
Precipitation: 290 mm (11.4")
October
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +24 °C (75 °F)
Water t°: +28.5 °C (83 °F)
Sundial in the day: 7 hours
Rainy days: 14 days
Precipitation: 267 mm (10.5")
November
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +23 °C (73 °F)
Water t°: +29 °C (84 °F)
Sundial in the day: 7 hours
Rainy days: 15 days
Precipitation: 228 mm (9.0")

Autumn holidays

(Dates to 2018)

September 24 – Binara Full Moon Poya Day.
October 24 – Vap Full Moon Poya Day.

November 6 – Deepavali.
November 20 – Milad un-Nabi.
November 22 – Ill Full Moon Poya Day.

Winter in Sri Lanka

Three winter month in Sri Lanka similar to other tropical countries are the best time to visit the island. Average daytime temperature holds close to 280C (820F). Sun shines through whole day. Rains may fall but they are fast and occasional and never last longer than half of an hour.

Comparing to rainy season winter on most of territory of Sri Lanka is dry. Ocean is relatively calm so swimming is available without any concerns. Night is bliss. Temperature drops to 240C (750F)and cool breeze starts to blow. And single fly in the ointment are mosquitos so you certainly would want to have some repellent.

The climate of the winter months

(Colombo)

December
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +22 °C (72 °F)
Water t°: +28.5 °C (83 °F)
Sundial in the day: 8 hours
Rainy days: 12 days
Precipitation: 165 mm (6.5")
January
Max average t°: +30 °C (86 °F)
Min average t°: +22 °C (71 °F)
Water t°: +28 °C (82 °F)
Sundial in the day: 9 hours
Rainy days: 7 days
Precipitation:82 mm (3.2")
February
Max average t°: +31 °C (87 °F)
Min average t°: +22 °C (72 °F)
Water t°: +28 °C (82 °F)
Sundial in the day: 9 hours
Rainy days: 7 days
Precipitation: 82 mm (3.2")

Winter holidays

(Dates to 2018)

December 22 – Unduvap Full Moon Poya Day.
December 25 – Christmas Day.

January 1 – Duruthu Full Moon Poya Day.
January 14 – Tamil Thai Pongal Day.

January 31 – Navam Full Moon Poya Day.
February 4 – National Day.
February 13 – Mahasivarathri Day.