Call us today on 020 7644 1755

Negombo City Tour - Glance at Sri Lanka's Heart

Duration: Half Day

negombo city tour - glance at sri lanka's heart

Sri Lanka’s beautiful tropical coastline is blessed with golden sandy beaches and tranquil fishing villages, which are a delight to explore. This tour will take you to the traditional coastal town of Negombo, where you can learn about the history, explore the sights and browse the local shops for gifts and souvenirs.

Conveniently located about 7km from Sri Lanka's International Airport and approximately 37km north of Colombo, Negombo is an ideal place for visitors to begin or end a holiday in Sri Lanka. The majority of tourists tend to visit the beach briefly before heading home or onwards to other places on the island, but the town is also worth exploring if you have time.

Set amidst lush groves of coconut palms, Negombo is located on the shores of a lagoon of the same name. The town has a small port, which was once a major trading port for the Portuguese and later for the Dutch after they took over in the mid 17th century. The settlers’ cultural, religious and architectural influences are still evident today, and you will notice colonial architecture and a large number of ornate Roman Catholic churches and statues of saints in the town, hence the reason why Negombo has been nicknamed “Little Rome”.

The town’s biggest attractions are the 17th century Dutch fort gate, which is now part of the prison, and the 100km long Dutch canal system, which was once a supply route to the Dutch administration. Linking Negambo to Colombo Port, the canal is still being used today and is a unique way to see Sri Lanka from a different perspective.

You can also enjoy walking along the harbour, where you can watch the local fishermen bringing their wares to shore on old traditional fishing crafts such as the oruwa (outrigger canoe) and Paruvas (large, man-powered catamaran). A great variety of freshly-caught seafood such as seer, skipjack, amber-jack, crabs, prawns and lobster is served at restaurants along the seafront the same day. The local fishermen also sell their supplies at Llelama, the local fish market which is the second largest in the country. This is a great place to watch the people and soak up the bustling atmosphere.

As the sun goes down, many of the shops and bars come to life on the stretch of road towards Kotchchikade. This is a great time to shop for local handicrafts, gems, spices and souvenirs before sampling the local cuisine in the restaurants and cafés around the harbour.

Sri Lanka Holidays Browse all

Best Value

From £829 per person
avani kalutara resort + traders - qaryat al beri

Avani Kalutara Resort + Traders - Qaryat Al Beri

With the most strikingly beautiful of settings, amongst green coconut groves and facing the golden sands just at the...

From £829 per person
avani bentota + sheraton abu dhabi hotel and resort

Avani Bentota + Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel and Resort

Avani Bentota is set in eight acres of lush frangipanis and coconut palms by the golden sands of Bentota. This hotel...

From £829 per person
mermaid hotel and club + rove downtown dubai

Mermaid Hotel and Club + Rove Downtown Dubai

This resort is spread across two acres of lush coconut groves and tropical gardens by the golden sands of Kalutura...

From £849 per person
jetwing beach + hyatt regency dubai

Jetwing Beach + Hyatt Regency Dubai

Jetwing Beach Resort sits beside a beautiful sun kissed stretch of beach, just outside the coastal town of Negombo. The...

From £849 per person
jetwing blue + grand hyatt dubai

Jetwing Blue + Grand Hyatt Dubai

Experience a warm Sri Lankan welcome at the Jetwing Blue Hotel. Surrounded by lush tropical gardens & a golden sand...

From £899 per person
tangerine beach + sheraton jumeirah beach

Tangerine Beach + Sheraton Jumeirah Beach

The place where "space meets light", the Tangerine Beach Hotel is a heavenly fusion of modern and ancient elegant...

Talk to a specialist


Call 020 7644 1755 to speak with our award-winning travel consultants.

Opening hours 09:00 - 21:00 GMT

Related articles for Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka News

Browse all Sri Lanka News

Movenpick Hotel Colombo, Sri Lanka appoints new General Manager

The Movenpick Hotel Colombo in Sri Lanka has appointed a new General Manager. George Koumendakos has taken over the role at the luxury five-star hotel in Colombo city centre, and he brings more than 30 years of experience in the hospitality sector to the position. The hotel opened in January 2016 and has 219 guest rooms and suites, a spa, a rooftop bar, themed restaurant and an infinity pool.

Vogue publishes detailed guide to Sri Lanka’s tea country

In an attempt to provide avid readers with a comprehensive guide to Sri Lanka’s stunning tea country, Vogue has recently published an article on the must-see locations when visiting the region. Writer Michaela Trimble from the fashion magazine gives readers insight into the best tea-related experiences in the island.

Shangri-La Hambantota Golf Resort and Spa, Sri Lanka appoints new General Manager

Shangri-La's Hambantota Golf Resort and Spa has announced the appointment of a new General Manager at the hotel in Sri Lanka. Moshi Perera will take over the role this month, bringing more than 20 years of hospitality experience to the role. The hotel opened to guests in summer 2016, and it has 300 guest rooms including 21 lavish suites.