Colombo Tourism

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Colombo is the capital city of Srilanka. It is located on the west coast of the island and near to Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte. Colombo is a busy and lively city with a combination of current life and architectural buildings. The city has a population of around 647,100 people. Along the East-West sea trade routes it had a large harbor, so Colombo people was well-known among ancient traders. Traveller Ibn Batuta who visited the island in the 14th century, referred to it as Kalanpu. In 1815 Sri Lanka was taken by the British Empire, and then Colombo was made as the capital city of Sri Lanka. In 1638 the Dutch signed a treaty with King Rajasinha II of Kandy which guaranteed the king help in his war against the Portuguese in exchange for a monopoly of the island's famous trade goods.
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History of Colombo

This war period ended in the year 1948 when Ceylon got their independence from Britain. Due to the remarkable impact on the country as a whole there was a great change among the people. Changes in culture, customs, clothing styles and religions. Colombo's geography is a combination of land and water. The city has many canals and lakes like Beira and many more. This lake is one of the most attractive landmarks of Colombo, and was used from many years by settlers to protect the city.
The Bank of Ceylon tower is the tallest structure and the most beautiful landmark of the city. It was the Old Parliament Building situated in front of the Fort district before the skyscrapers were built. Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque was another landmark of Colombo, which was used by the sailors for approaching the port. This mosque is still attracted by many of the visitors.

Popular tourist destinations in Colombo


A beautiful park, stretching half a kilometre along the coast of Colombo's business district. This picturesque 5 hectare park was laid out by Sir Henry George Ward in 1859.


Popular Buddhist temple with an interesting blend of different architectures and culture.The Gangaramaya Temple is a very famous tourist attraction of Colombo.


A Buddhist temple which is believed to have been visited by the Buddha on his third visit to the country, back in 500 BCE.Located about 7 kilometres from Colombo, this historical temple is believed to have been hallowed during Buddha's visit.


Ever heard of an island temple? Offering the perfect respite from the hustle and bustle of the city, Seema Malaka is one of the few places to visit in Colombo for couples which exudes tropical charm.


  • Laksala: This is the best and biggest shopping center, which is located in York Street. Best time to visit Laksala is from 9:00 A.M to 17:00 P.M(Mon - Fri). The items that we get here is brass and silverwares, wooden artifacts, buffalo horn, natural fibers, and even rush and reed abound. There are also products made from coconut shells, cane, and bamboo as well as toys, pottery, artificial flowers and costume jewellery.
  • Odel: Odel is placed at Alexander Place on Lipton Circus. It is the famous brand factory outlet in Sri Lanka. You can find the international houses like Gap, DKNY and George. It is a exclusive departmental store that sells clothes, accessories, jewellery, shoes, bags, cosmetics, home ware, tea, books, watches, sunglasses, chocolates and candy, toiletries, ice cream parlor, hair salon and florist.
  • The Barefoot gallery: The Barefoot gallery is located at 706 Galle Road, Colombo. This gallery is famous for the Handloom products. Very innovative handmade artifacts, toys, notebook, hand-painted wooden boxes, tote bags, skirts and blouses, costume jewellery, table linen and even bed linen.
  • Majestic city: Here you can find cinema on the top floor and a food court in the basement. They sell CD's, DVD's, books, clothes and linen.

Places to visit

  • Beaches: Sri Lanka is full of sandy beaches all around the coastal border. Sri Lankan beaches are very popular for comforting, sun swimming and surfing. Bentota, Beruwala, Hikkaduwa, Galle and Negombo are some of the famous beaches found in Sri Lanka.
  • Kandy: The valley of Kandy is surrounded by peak and splendid hills. It is situated above 465 meters from the sea level and is an attractive city with full of arts, crafts, music and dance.
  • Nuwara Eliya: LIt is a hill station and known as little England, which is a very superb city. It offers amazing scenery views of valleys, mountains, waterfalls and grass lands.
  • Colombo city: Colombo city is the marketable and business center of Sri Lanka. It's full of shopping malls, bazars and old buildings.


Roads: A1 highway connects Colombo with Kandy. A2 highway connects Colombo with Galle. A4 highway connects Colombo with Ratnapura.
Bus: The bus service is operated both by private companies and the government companies, which is known as Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB). The Central Bus Stand is the major center for the bus transport.
Airport: Bandaranaike International Airport handles all International flights and Ratmalana Airport handles all domestic flights.
Trains: Main Line connects Colombo to Badulla. Southern Line connects Colombo to Matara. Northern Line connects Colombo to Kankesanturai and takes a turn from the Main Line at Polgahawela junction. Puttalam Line connects Colombo to Puttalam.

Visa Information

Indian Embassy at Colombo
High Commission of India 36-38 Galle Road, P.O. Box No. 882, Colombo 3, Sri Lanka
Telephone +94-1-421605,422788
Fax +94-1-446403
Timings Submission and collection of documents: 0930 to 1730 (Monday to Friday)
Consulate working hours 0930 to 1730 (Monday to Friday)
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