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10 Famous Places To Visit In Colombo

10 Famous Places To Visit In Colombo | Must Visit In 2024

Situated along Lanka's southwest coast, Colombo stands tall as a vibrant capital inviting travellers into a world woven with history, culture, and modern flair. It's a city where the past gracefully dances with the present, showcasing the likes of the revered Gangaramaya Temple and the timeless charm of Old Dutch Hospital. Nestled on the island's western shore, there are many stunning places to visit in Colombo as it unfolds its charm. With the iconic Gangaramaya Temple and bustling Pettah Market, there is a lot more to see and explore in the city. The best time to explore this tropical haven is from January to March when the weather is pleasantly dry. Seamlessly connected through Bandaranaike International Airport, Colombo invites travellers to dive into its rich history, vibrant markets, and delectable cuisine. Colombo stands as an affordable gem, offering diverse experiences from its lively street food scenes to upscale dining, making it a captivating destination for those seeking an enriching journey within budget-friendly confines.

List Of 10 Best Places To Visit In Colombo

Colombo, pulsating at the core of the nation, opens its doors to diverse experiences, whether it's the beauty of Viharamahadevi Park or the lively energy of Pettah Market, where every nook brims with vibrant hues and daily rhythms. This guide is your ticket to the hidden places to visit in Colombo, a city proudly flaunting its heritage while embracing the ever-evolving spirit of progress. Let's dive on a journey through the beautiful streets and iconic landmarks that shape Colombo into an extraordinary and unforgettable destination.

  • Gangaramaya Temple | Journey to Tranquillity in the Heart of Colombo
  • Galle Face Green | Where Ocean Breezes Whisper Tales of the Sea
  • Viharamahadevi Park | Nature's Haven in Colombo's Embrace
  • Independence Memorial Hall | Echoes of Freedom in Architectural Grandeur
  • Old Dutch Hospital | Where Colonial Charms Meet Modern Delights
  • Beira Lake | Serene Waters, Urban Oasis
  • Seema Malakaya | A Floating Sanctuary Amidst Urbanity
  • Colombo Lotus Tower | Touch the Sky in Colombo's Modern Icon
  • Pettah Floating Market | A Vibrant Tapestry of Colours and Commerce
  • St Anthony's Church | A Sacred Sanctuary Amidst Urban Hustle

1. Gangaramaya Temple | Journey to Tranquillity in the Heart of Colombo

One of the greatest religious places to see in Colombo, the Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple sits within walking distance from the beautiful Lake Beira. The religious significance of the temple attracts locals and travellers alike. Fusing elements of Chinese, Indian, and Thai styles of architecture and design, the temple is also an architectural marvel. The intricate carvings on the doors and walls of the temple are marvellous. The murals convey informative Buddhist legends and stories, while the colossal statue of Lord Buddha emanates peaceful vibes all over the temple.

  • Hours: 05:30 AM - 10:00 PM
  • Location: 61 Sri Jinarathana Road, Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4 km

2. Galle Face Green | Where Ocean Breezes Whisper Tales of the Sea

A beautiful stretch of open space sandwiched between the bustling Galle Road and the Indian Ocean, Galle Face Green is one of the most popular picnic attractions in Colombo. The place received considerable footfall, especially on weekends when countless vendors were around, tempting the little ones with all kinds of toys. It also helps that the area is lined with street-food vendors, making it one of the best places to indulge in the street-food culture of Colombo. Looked after and maintained by Sri Lanka’s Urban Development Authority, Galle Face Park also promises you a phenomenal sunset!

  • Hours: Open 24 hours
  • Location: Near Galle Beach, Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Distance from Colombo bus stand: 3.5 km

3. Viharamahadevi Park | Nature's Haven in Colombo's Embrace

Taking its name after Queen Viharamahadevi. Viharamahadevi Park is the largest one in Colombo. Combining picnic spots, waterfalls, a public park, a zoo, nature trails, and much more, the park is one of the most relaxing places to visit in Colombo. It is one of those rare few places that always manage to surprise you, regardless of how many times you visit. The calming, peaceful vibes of nature and the adventurous rides make this place an unmissable spot when travelling to Colombo. While it is no wonder that the park is a favourite amongst kids, it also appeals equally to adults seeking respite from the banter of routine life.

  • Hours: 07:00 AM - 06:00 PM daily
  • Location: Colombo 07, Sri Lanka
  • Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4.5 km

4. Independence Memorial Hall | Echoes of Freedom in Architectural Grandeur

Erected in the year 1953, the Independence Memorial Hall is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Colombo. Built as a tribute to the nation’s independence from British rule, the hall annually hosts the Independence Day celebrations along with various other national events. Sitting right in the centre of Cinnamon Gardens, there is also a museum on the premises which stands to commemorate the brave souls who fought for the nation. The hall is also an open space for jogging, cycling, aerobics, gymming, and other fitness activities.

  • Hours: 07:00 AM - 06:00 PM daily
  • Location: 7, Independence Avenue, Colombo
  • Distance from Colombo bus stand: 5.6 km

5. Old Dutch Hospital | Where Colonial Charms Meet Modern Delights

Established in the 17th century, the Old Dutch Hospital is one of the oldest and most well-preserved buildings in Colombo. It was built to provide medical aid to the workers of the Dutch East India Company. Although the building served many different purposes over the years, it has now been turned into a shopping centre. Although the building is furnished with several shops, Odels is one particular place that deals in top-quality clothes and souvenirs. The building also appeals to foodies who can choose from the multiple cafes and food joints that thrive there. Located in Galle Fort, Old Dutch Hospital remains one of the most entertaining places to go in Colombo.

  • Timings: 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM
  • Location: Old Dutch Hospital Hospital Street, Galle, Sri Lanka
  • Distance from Colombo bus stand: 130 km

6. Beira Lake | Serene Waters, Urban Oasis

Put together the elements of picnic, adventure, and pilgrimage, and you have Beria Lake, one of the most beautiful tourist places in Colombo. Set in the heart of the city, Beria Lake sits near the legendary Gangaramaya Temple, while a beautiful temple called Seema Makala temple graces the centre of the lake. The resident temple is furnished with beautiful idols of Buddhist and Hindu deities. Religious appeal aside, the lake is a popular haunt for birdwatchers and photographers, especially during the evenings when a spectacular sunset lights up the sky. Spanning nearly 160 acres, the lake is also famous for rowing and other activities.

  • Timings: Open 24 hours
  • Location: 02 Colombo, Near Seema Malaka, Colombo
  • Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2.3 km

7. Seema Malakaya | A Floating Sanctuary Amidst Urbanity