Though strange to Western ears, the local languages are not as difficult as you may think. Learning a few basic words will make your stay more rewarding.
Most people speak Sinhala, which is the national and official language. Tamil is also spoken, and English is spoken at most tourist establishments.
Since Sri Lanka endows a diversity of ethnic groups, language spoken in the country is various. The two major ones widely used are, however, Sinhala language spoken by the Sinhalese majority and Tamil language used by the Tamils. Although, Sinhala and Tamil are languages from different source, both share some common characteristics and obviously have influence on each other's linguistic evolution as well. Sinhala and Tamil are official languages in Sri Lanka. Sinhala, a language of Indo-Aryan origin is the language of the majority. English is widely spoken and understood. Place names and sign-boards on buses andtrains are usually in all three languages.