Colombo Sightseeing Tour - Sri Lanka's Capital
Duration: Half Day
Spend a day exploring Sri Lanka’s bustling commercial capital on this fascinating tour of Colombo. Soak up the colours and atmosphere of this vibrant cosmopolitan city as we visit bazaars, museums, mosques, temples and so much more besides. This is a great opportunity to gain an insight into the culture and history of Sri Lanka’s largest city.
Arriving at Colombo, we drive through the commercial district of the city, known as "Fort" because both the Portuguese and Dutch built a fort at this point. Fort is also the historic centre of the city, where most of the old buildings from the Dutch, Portuguese and British colonial eras can be seen. Amongst these older structures lie the famous clock tower, a former lighthouse and the presidential residence (also known as Queen's House). This area has also become the main commercial district, filled with office blocks, government buildings, department stores and shops.
Driving east of Fort, we come to the noisy but exciting Pettah bazaar district. The streets here are crammed with shops and stalls selling all sorts of goods from fruit, vegetables and meat to gemstones, precious metals, jewellery and other random items, so you can be sure to pick up a bargain.
Many mosques and temples are also located in this area, including the famous Jami-Ul-Alfar Jumma Mosque. Completed in 1909, this is one of the most striking buildings in Colombo with its unique red and white stripes and patterns. You will also visit a Hindu and Buddhist Temple before moving on to the Dutch Wolfendhal Church. Dating back to 1749, this is the oldest Protestant church in Sri Lanka.
We continue south of the city to the smart residential area of Cinnamon Gardens, passing elegant mansions, tree-lined streets and the picturesque Viharamahadevi Park along the way. Also located in the vicinity is the National Museum of Colombo, the largest and most prestigious museum in Sri Lanka, which houses an interesting collection of historical works and exquisite sculptures.
Other landmarks in the area include Independence Square, the Prime Minister’s Office and Colombo Town Hall. Before the end of the tour we will also visit Hulfsdorp Law Courts, Bandaranayake Memorial, International Conference Hall and the popular Galle Face Green, a relaxing promenade that stretches half a kilometre along the coast. Not to be missed during your holiday in Sri Lanka, there is so much more to Colombo than meets the eye.
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