Everything you Need to Know about Bentota - Sri Lanka

Continuing further south from Beruwela in the south west you reach Bentota. About 62 km south of Colombo, the city is graced by palm trees and a serene atmosphere. Located in the Southern Province, many tourists take in Bentota as a combined excursion with Beruwela.

It is also a popular weekend getaway for many residents of Colombo. The local population is predominantly Singhalese Buddhists and the name of the city is taken from a mythical demon 'Ben' who ruled the river banks or 'tota'.

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Bentota Attractions

Brief Gardens

This is an excursion from Bentota worth taking. It consists of the house and garden of Bevis Bawa, a famous landscape architect, who developed the place, starting in 1929. Many sculptures by Bevis and other artists can be seen here. It was formerly a rubber plantation, but now the estate is more of a museum. The Japanese Garden is a must see.

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Galapata Vihara

A beautiful Temple dating from the 12th century. It is said to have been built by Parakramabahu the Great, who also built the city of Polonnaruwa. There is a maze of underground tunnels that connect the area's temples. In January a festival is celebrated on full moon day and a procession held in memory of Buddha’s visit to the island.

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Sea Turtle Project

A must visit if you wish to take a look at the conservation of turtles. The turtle hatcheries are open from 06:00 in the morning to 18:00 in the evening. If you wish to release a freshly hatched three-day old turtle into the ocean, you can here.

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Bentota Activities

Bentota Beach

Ideal for Windsurfing and Sailing and equipment can be hired locally. Just remember to bargain for whatever you hire - there is always a margin that can be reduced. The Bentota Ganga and Lulu Ganga are rivers that make Bentota into a sort of peninsula. The rivers have water sports and boat rides for those interested.

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National Holiday Resort Complex

This complex houses hotels, restaurants and markets and you will need some time exploring this huge area. The shopping centre is a good place to pick up some good bargains. If you are interested in jewelry, 14-carat gold with semi precious stones can be bought here.

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Bentota Restaurants and Nightlife

All kinds of food can be found at Bentota Beach: there is top-of-the-range seafood, Sri Lankan and international food. The area also plays host to many five-star hotels in which you are sure to find the best meals possible in an idyllic environment. Nightlife is quite mellow, thanks to Ceysands, a floating discotheque, to bring a bit of excitement, eventhough high season can be buzzing at night in the bars.


The latest addition to Bentota’s array of restaurants, Escoffier is a contemporary, all-day restobar that serves mouth watering European and Sri Lankan fare – the grilled seafood platter and Sri Lankan chicken curry with dhal is simply divine. The delicious ambiance and tasty worthwhile food, plus a table on the beach under the stars, makes for a romantic night out.

  • Address: 359, Galle Road, Warahena, Bentota, Sri lanka
  • Tel: 0094 344 940940
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Golden Grill

Situated at the river, this is a great place. It has English-speaking waiters and a friendly atmosphere, very reasonable food and the steak and mixed grill are really delicious. Round off your meal with an ice cream dessert.

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National Holiday Resort Complex

This complex has a number of interesting places, including the Sea View restaurant. Do try out the local 'toddy' which is an alcoholic beverage made out of coconut nectar.

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Tarshish Restaurant

In the Hotel Serendib, it is also a beach-facing venue which is good to eat out at. Food is reasonably priced. The Hotel also has two cozy bars in case you are interested.

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If you are into dancing, then Ceysands, a floating discotheque located between the Bentota River and the sea, is ideal. You get there in a ferry and can literally dance the night away under the stars.


Bentota Shopping

National Holiday Resort Complex

A good place to visit if you are looking for some specific bargains. Also there is a Monday market held weekly in Althugama from 07:30 in the morning to about 15:00 in the afternoon.

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Bentota Bazaar

You can come up with some interesting surprises at the Bentota Bazaar. It is a government-approved shopping area and is a lot less chaotic than the Monday market. Wood carvings, batik textiles and brass artifacts are all available here.

Related Pages

Bentota Hotels

All Hotels in Bentota

Bentota hotels and resorts at the best rates, from Five Stars resorts such as Saman Villas, to budget accommodation like Read More...

Bentota Map

Bentota Map

Our interactive map (and satellite views) displays all available hotels with photos, facilities and guest comments as Read More...

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