45 Places to Visit in Colombo- Updated List of 2020 with Photos

Places to Visit in Colombo

Gangaramaya Temple, Galle Face Green, National Museum of Colombo, Viharamahadevi Park, Independence Memorial Hall, Beira Lake, Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque, Seema Malaka, Dutch Period Museum, Old Parliament Building, World Trade Center, Paradise Road, Pettah Floating Market and many more places.

Being the capital of Sri Lanka, there is a diverse list of places to visit in Colombo for everyone. The rich and vast history of Colombo may be the result of having been ruled successively by the Dutch, Portuguese, and British! This has led to an incredible patchwork of various different cultures, and the various monuments of Colombo can attest to that.

Apart from some marvellous historical monuments and buildings, there are some religious places exhibiting praiseworthy details, museums storing artefacts and nature escapes that make it a great travel destination. You can witness a perfect amalgamation of different cultures in Colombo. Besides, you can also indulge in a number of activities on your trip to Colombo which include scuba diving, shopping, and waterpark activities. The unending tourist spot options here make Colombo the most popular tourist destination in Sri Lanka.

Some of the major tourist places in Colombo that you should not skip are Beira Lake where you can experience adventure, pilgrimage and picnic at a single place; National Museum of Colombo where you can check artefacts and manuscripts in a beautiful building with Italian Architecture; and Gangaramaya Temple which is the most iconic Buddhist temple in Sri Lanka. Wildlife tours of Attidiya Bird Sanctuary and Dehiwala Zoo are highly recommended for adventure and wildlife lovers. 

Best Places To Visit In Colombo

01

Gangaramaya Temple

Gangaramaya Temple

One of the greatest religious attractions in Colombo, the Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple sits in 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 style 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 wall murals convey informative Buddhist legends and stories, while the colossal statue of Lord Buddha emanates peaceful vibes all over the temple.


Timings: 05:30 AM to 10:00 PM

Price: LKR 200 per person

Location: Gangaramaya Temple, 61 Sri Jinarathana Road, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4 km

02

Galle Face Green

Galle Face Green

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 there are countless vendors 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 Urban Development Authority, Galle Face Park also promises you a phenomenal sunset!


Timings: Open 24 hours

Price: No entry fees

Location: Near Galle Beach, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 3.5 km

03

National Museum of Colombo

National Museum of Colombo

Established during 1877, this is the biggest museum in the island nation and is undoubtedly the pride of Sri Lanka. The place houses some of the best and personalised collections of the ancient Kandyan dynasty rulers. 
Carrying striking reflections of the Italian style of architecture, the museum houses countless artefacts dating back several centuries, portraying the cultural and natural nuances of the country.

Check out the magnificent throne of the last king of Kandi, along with the royal throne of King Wimaladharmasuriya II and pair of Bodhisattva sandals dating back to the 9th century! If you’re a history fanatic or simply curious about the culture of Sri Lanka, a visit to the National Museum of Colombo has ample treats to tickle your fancy.


Timings: 09:00 AM to 05:00 PM, every day

Price: INR 30 per head

Location: Sir Marcus Fernando Mawatha, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: The museum is at a distance of 4 km from Colombo bus stand.

04

Viharamahadevi Park

Viharamahadevi Park

Taking its name after Queen Viharamahadevi, the 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 combined with 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.


Timings: 07:00 AM to 06:00 PM everyday

Price: No entry fees

Location: Colombo 07, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4.5 km

Also Check: Most relaxing places to stay in Colombo
05

Independence Memorial Hall

Independence Memorial Hall

Erected in the year 1953, the Independence Memorial Hall is one of the most popular tourist places 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 also serves as an open space for jogging, cycling, aerobics, gymming, and other fitness activities.


Timings: Open 24 hours

Price: No entry fees

Location: 7, Independence Avenue, Colombo

Distance from Colombo bus stand: Independence Square is at a distance of around 5.6 km from Colombo bus stand.

06

Beira Lake

Beira Lake

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 in close proximity to 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 every day

Price: LKR 300 per head, but if you’ve paid for entry at Gangaramaya temple, you need not pay for the lake.

Location: 02 Colombo, Near Seema Malaka, Colombo

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2.3 km

07

Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque

 Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque

Jami Ul-Afar is a great mosque sitting in the confines of Second Cross Street in Colombo. The mosque is quite prominent and stands out with its red and white striped colour, almost like a candy! Built by Habibu Labbe Saibu Labbe, the mosque is one of the many culturally rich places to visit in Colombo. A dreamy synthesis of Indian, Indo-Islamic, Neoclassical, and Gothic styles of architecture can be seen here -  a true cultural gem.


Timings: 09:00 AM to 05:00 PM, from Saturday to Thursday

Location: No.228, Second Cross Street, 11, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2 km

08

Seema Malaka

Seema Malaka

If you’ve never heard of something called an island temple, you’re in for a pleasant surprise. Seema Malaka is the perfect option for those looking for a little quiet time away from the maddening rush of the city. The tropical vibes of the place make it an ideal choice for couples, too. 

Surrounded by lush greenery beside the water, the Seema Malaka temple carries a stunning amalgamation of the Chinese, Thai, Indian, and Sri Lankan styles of architecture. Aiming to promote peace amongst people of all cultures and religions, Seema Malaka is one of the most peaceful places to visit in Colombo.


Timings: Open 24 hours, every day

Price: No entry fees

Location: Sir James Pieris Mawatha, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4 km

09

Dutch Period Museum

Dutch Period Museum

The Dutch Period Museum, set in the very heart of the Pettah market, is one of the most interesting places to visit in Colombo. The unique architecture of the museum combined with the countless personal belongings of several Dutch rulers endears the place to patrons of history and culture. Spread over 2 storeys, the museum was originally the official residence of the then Dutch Governor of Sri Lanka, Thomas Van Rhee. 

With help from the Government of the Netherlands, the mansion was converted into a public museum in the year 1977.


Timings: 09:00 AM to 05:00 PM from Tuesday to Saturday only.

Location: Prince Street, Colombo 01100, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2 km away

10

Old Parliament Building

Old Parliament Building

One of the most important government offices in Sri Lanka, the Old Parliament Building in Colombo bears reflections of the Neo-baroque architectural styles. Rooted in history and politics, there are many stories that build up the reputation of the building. The building was built in the year 1930 and declared as the Parliament of Sri Lanka in 1977. 

The Parliament of Sri Lanka was shortly shifted to the new office in Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte, and the old building has since been serving as the residence of the Presidential Secretariat. The garden within the premises is home to a number of bronze statues, too. If politics and history fascinate you, the Old Parliament Building is one of the most inspiring tourist places in Colombo.


Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 1.5 km

11

World Trade Center

World Trade Center

The World Trade Centre twin-building is one of Colombo’s top tourist attractions. Standing tall at 152 meters, the 39-storey premium business complex guards some of the most important and reputed businesses from all over the world. 

The World Trade Centre in Colombo has been presented with several awards, including many for the energy-efficient management of the building! It is said to one of the most eco-friendly business complexes in Sri Lanka.


Timings: Open 24 hours

Location: 1 Bank of Ceylon Mawatha, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 1.5 km

Places to Shop in Colombo

12

Paradise Road

Paradise Road

Inaugurated in the year 1987 by Udayshanth Fernando, Paradise Road is a lovely little boutique that deals in quality contemporary clothing, most of which are locally produced. What began as a small, quiet label in Cinnamon Gardens of Colombo is now one of the landmark design brands in the city! 

The design brand has also made a foray into the hospitality sector with two established boutique hotels in Colombo and Bentota. Furnished with the utmost elegance, Paradise road is amongst some of the most luxurious hotels in Colombo. Patrons of contemporary arts, fashion, and other finer things should feel right at home here.


Timings: 10:00 AM to 07:00 PM everyday

Location: 213 Dharmapala Mawatha, Colombo 7, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4 km

13

Pettah Floating Market

Pettah Floating Market

Located on Pettah’s Bastian Mawatha, Pettah Floating market is one of the most sensational shopping spots in Colombo. A former cluster of dilapidated warehouses and smelly water, the market was considered a danger zone. The market was then transformed by the merged efforts of the UDA and a brilliant architect called Thushari Kariyawasam. 

The former swamp was then transformed into a calm marketplace lined with cemented paths and elegant wooden walkways. The market is abuzz with vendors selling everything from fresh fruits and vegetables to clothes, jewellery, electronics, and handicraft items.


Timings: 08:00 AM to 10:30 PM everyday

Price: No entry fees

Location: West East Bastian Mawatha, Colombo 01000, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 600 meters

14

Laksala

Laksala

One of the most refreshing places to visit in Colombo, especially if you like shopping, Laksala is the only state-run souvenir shop. Laksala is a chain with thirteen outlets across various parts of Sri Lanka. You can find a great variety of local Sri Lankan items here, sold at very reasonable rates. This is also a clever way of generating profit across all businesses that supply products to Laksala. 

If you’re looking for a fit or souvenirs to take back home, you might want to pick up some organic tea, spices, traditional jewellery items, or even a little piece of art!


Timings: 09:00 AM to 09:00 PM everyday

Location: 215 Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 6.3 km

15

Barefoot

Barefoot

Barefoot is an exquisite boutique that has gained tremendous fame over the last few years. Carrying beautiful range garments woven with handloom cotton fabrics, Barefoot is especially marked for its unique designs influenced by land and seascapes along with the rich biodiversity of the country. Most popular for its sarongs, the beautifully crafted garments of Barefoot redefine ethnicity. 

You should experience hunger pangs while shopping at Barefoot, there is a lovely little garden cafe where you can treat your taste buds with their famous delicacies! If you find yourself there on a Sunday, you’re in luck for a groovy live Jazz session with lunch!


Timings: 10:00 AM to 07:00 PM every day

Location: 704 Galle Rd, Colombo 00300, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 7 km

16

Pettah/ Manning Market

Pettah/ Manning Market

Huddled along the eastern end of Fort station, Manning Market or Pettah Market is one of the oldest and most popular markets in Colombo. Brimming with locally grown products, Manning Market is named after the former governor William Manning. The mouldering colonial architecture and cobblestone work is over a century old and has remained untouched ever since. 

With several other markets mushrooming within the city, Manning Market may have lost some of its old popularity, but remains widely visited by locals. Manning Market is one of the oldest and most well-known markets in Colombo.


Timings: 06:00 AM to 02:00 PM

Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 500 meters

Tourist Places in Colombo for Family

17

Attidiya Bird Sanctuary

Attidiya Bird Sanctuary

One of the most refreshing places to see in Colombo, the Attidiya Bird Sanctuary is home to over 50 avian species, along with variations of insects and butterflies species. The biodiversity of the place will leave you stunned as you take short walks around, appreciating the beauty of Mother Nature. 

While you can explore the bountiful corners of the sanctuary throughout the day, mornings and evenings here remain unbeatable. If you’re truly willing to watch these birds in full glory, we recommend taking a trip to Colombo during January, when the migratory birds fly in. The sanctuary is recommended for everyone who wishes to spend some time in the bounds of nature.  


Timings: 09:00 AM to 05:00 PM, every day

Price: No entry fees

Location: Boralesgamuwa, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 15.4 km


Also Check: Best things to do on your Colombo trip
18

St Anthony's Church

St Anthony's Church

One of the most interesting attractions in Colombo, St. Anthony’s Church, nestled in the heart of the city, appeals to visitors from all castes. Visit the church on a Tuesday, and you will see throes of devotees waiting their turn to offer prayers and seek blessings of the statue of St. Anthony. The statue is believed to possess magical powers and is one of the several reasons that the church is the centre of attention and devotion for so many.

Unlike other places of worship that exude distinctly religious vibes, St. Anthony’s church in Colombo welcomes people from all religions to promote peace and unity. Having been declared as a national shrine now, the church is a must-visit destination for travellers, especially those with a penchant for history and culture.


Timings: 08:00 AM to 07:00 PM

Price: No entry fees

Location: Kochchikade, St Anthony's Mawatha, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: The church stands at a distance of 2 km from Colombo bus stand.


19

Mount Lavinia

Mount Lavinia

Mount Lavinia is arguably the most popular heritage hotel in Colombo, home to some of the best ocean-view rooms which are almost always booked out, unless you’re an early bird. If you’re visiting Mount Lavinia during festivals or peak season, the hotel offers several attractive deals including wedding packages, sunset deals, national holiday offers and more. The rooftop opens to incredible views of the Laccadive sea, and makes for a quiet little getaway especially during the sunrise and sunset hours. 

The well-known National Zoological Garden is also in close vicinity to this legendary hotel. Equipped with a salon, shopping arcade, and swimming pool along with many other facilities, the Mount Lavinia knows exactly how to pamper you.


Timings: 24 hours

Price: Starting from LKR 1,000

Location: No. 100, Hotel Road, Mount Lavinia, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: Mount Lavinia is located at a distance of 13 km from Colombo bus stand.

Also Check: Best Adventures to take in Colombo
20

Dehiwala Zoo

Dehiwala Zoo

Dehiwala Zoo, also known as the National Zoological Gardens is one of the most widely recommended places to visit in Colombo. It is home to a diverse array of exotic animal species in addition to being one of the oldest zoos in Asia. The zoo presently houses around 2,500 animals in all, actively working towards their protection and conservation. 

Besides being the ideal treat for wildlife enthusiasts, the zoo is also a favourite amongst nature and botany lovers alike. The zoo is an active participant in animal exchange programmes which promote breeding. The refreshing greenery of the gardens will leave you wanting to come back!


Timings: 08:00 AM to 06:00 PM everyday

Price: LKR 100 for adults, LKR 30 for children, LKR 500 for foreigners

Location: 120 Quarry Rd, Dehiwala-Mount Lavinia, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: The zoo is about 11.4 km away from Colombo bus stop.

21

Old Dutch Hospital

Old Dutch Hospital

Established in the 17th century, the Old Dutch Hospital is one of the oldest and most well-preserved buildings in Colombo. It was built with the intention of providing 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 attractions in Colombo.


Timings: 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM everyday

Price: No entry fees

Location: Old Dutch Hospital Hospital Street, Galle, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: The hospital building sits at a distance of approximately 130 km from Colombo bus stand.

22

Old City Hall

Old City Hall

If you like architecture or history, the Old City Hall on Main Street is amongst the greatest attractions in Colombo. The hall was built nearly 200 years ago, the brilliant architectural vestiges of which era can still be seen in the exteriors. If you’re really keen on exploring the history of Sri Lanka, you might want to take a guided tour of the hall, though it might cost you a considerable amount as tip. 

That said, this place is a treasure chest of information, and exhibits ancient equipment, machinery and various other historical items that will really ignite your imagination.


Timings: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm from Monday to Sunday

Price: No entry fees

Location: Main Street, Colombo

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 1.5 km

23

Old Galle Buck Lighthouse

Old Galle Buck Lighthouse

Another great spot sitting right beside Galle Beach is the famous Old Galle Buck Lighthouse. If you’re looking for some peace and quiet without having to stray too far from the city, the Old Galle Lighthouse is your best bet. A little offbeat, the lighthouse affords you clear, mind-blowing views of the seemingly endless Indian Ocean. 

Nestled within the boundaries of the Sri Lankan Navy, the best time to visit the lighthouse is at sundown when the sky burns orange and pink over the stretch of the ocean beneath. It goes unsaid that this is the best place to experience the sunset. Another highlight, the lighthouse is considerably less crowded!


Timings: 09:00 AM to 06:00 PM

Price: No entry fees

Location: Chaithya Road, Colombo 00100, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2 km

24

Traditional Puppet Art Museum

Traditional Puppet Art Museum
Puppet shows are closely related to Sri Lankan culture. Hence this museum is largely responsible for upholding the folk values and traditions of the island nation even today. Since the demand for these shows is quite high, it is better to book your seats early. This place is sure to bring great joy and entertainment for tourists of all age groups. One has to visit the museum to see the expertise with which artisans manage their multi-coloured and attractive puppets.

Highlights
: Local and international puppet show experts conduct shows at this venue on a regular basis to enthral people who gather here in large numbers.

Location
: This unique museum is located at Dehiwala, in close proximity to Galle.

Timings
: The museum is open from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM on all days of the week. 

Price
Approximate price starts from 50LKR per adult
25

Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara

Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara

Kelaniya Raja Maha Viraha is a Buddhist temple applauded for the incredible sculptures that it harbours. Located about 10 km away from Colombo, the temple stands tall and proud despite having been demolished by hostile forces from India and Portugal. Built along the banks of river Kelaniya, the temple is one of the most consecrated spaces in Colombo. 

The temple was originally built in the year 543 BC, and can, till this date, be seen in all its glory after having been restored in the 18th century. It is one of the true upholders of culture and tradition amongst all other tourist attractions in Colombo.


Timings: Open 24 hours

Price: No entry fees

Location: Biyagama Road, Kelaniya, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 10 km (approximately)

26

Leisure World

Leisure World

Leisure World is a wonderful, extensive theme park, and one of its kind in Sri Lanka. Blessed with magnificent biodiversity, the park collates the experiences of an amusement park, water park, and a national park. Spread over 52 acres of land, Leisure World is armed with well-trained personnel, instructors, lifeguards and attendants, ensuring as much safety as entertainment. 

With enough rides to satiate the adrenaline carvings of all age groups, Leisure World is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Colombo.


Timings: 09:00 AM to 05:00 PM on all days except Mondays.

Price: LKR 200 onwards

Location: Avissawella Road, Seethawaka, Kaluaggala, Hanwalla, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 31.6 km

27

Colombo Port Maritime Museum

 Colombo Port Maritime Museum

Located next to the Colombo Port, the Colombo Port Maritime Museum was built in the year 1676, inside a former Dutch prison. Having been renovated once, the museum is home to a variety of important historical artefacts, items, and information associated with Sri Lanka’s ports. In addition to information on the ports and maritime industry, it also houses sculptures of important historical characters, including King Vijaya. 

You can also find a number of models of the ships used by the country here. Not as popular as other attractions in Colombo, this is a must-visit for patrons of history, culture, and for those with a penchant for sailing!


Timings: 09:00 AM to 04:00 PM. Closed on Sundays.

Location: 19 Chaithya Rd, Colombo 00100, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2.4 km

28

Royal Colombo Golf Club

Royal Colombo Golf Club

Ranked amongst one of the top golf courses in Asia, the Royal Colombo Golf Club comes to the rescue when you’re craving some sporty vibes. You can dust off your golf skills at a number of golf courses catering to both, amateurs as well as pro golfers. Believed to be second only to India’s Royal Calcutta Golf Club, the one in Colombo is extremely popular almost travellers.

After you’re done trying your hand at golf, indulge in some savoury delights at the resident bars and restaurants, or go on a shopping spree! The Royal Colombo Golf Club is one of the most stately places to visit in Colombo.

 

Timings: 06:00 AM to 11:00 PM everyday

Price: LKR 5,000 to 10,000

Location: Model Farm Road, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 5.7 km

Places to Visit in Colombo at Night

29

Bellagio

Bellagio

Bellagio is another great casino that belongs to the group owning MGM and Bally’s casinos. While the latter are more high-end and opulent, Bellagio caters to the middle-class, making it one of the most widely visited casinos in Colombo. Ranked as the leading gaming joint by countless travellers, Bellagio is furnished with a great variety of games, including Poker, Three Card Poker, Roulette, Back Jack, Slot, and many more. 

During festivals, Bellagio hosts a large number of promotion events and performances to entertain guests.


Timings: Open 24 hours

Location: Bellagio Casino, No. 430, R. A. De Mel Mawatha, Colombo 03, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 5 km

30

Number 11 - Geoffery Bawa’s Home

Number 11 - Geoffery Bawa’s Home

The Number 11 - Geoffrey Bawa’s residence is one of the most well-designed residences in Colombo. Designed with brilliant architecture, several elegant art pieces and old artefacts from the personal collection of the Late Geoffrey Bawa adorn the interiors. Note that the residence does not function as a normal hotel. 

It has two rooms available, both of which make up a suite. Only a single party or family may be given a room at a time, unlike a regular hotel. So, if you are up for a party, this can be the best place.


Timings: 10:00 AM to 03:30 PM

Price: INR 1,000 per person

Location: 3, 11 33rd Lane, Colombo 00300, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 6 km

31

Bally’s Casino

Bally’s Casino

One of the hottest attractions in Colombo, Bally’s is arguably the biggest and finest casino in Colombo Located just behind Colombo Fort Station, the casino offers a variety of packages and deals to travellers, according to their budgets (packages start at USD 4,000) You will also be cosseted with a variety of complimentary drinks and food. The casino houses a luxurious spa where you can indulge and rejuvenate your senses. 

Talking about games and entertainment, Bally’s casino remains unrivalled. Whatever kind of entertainment you can think of, it is likely that you’ll find them all here at Bally’s!


Timings: Open 24 hours

Price: USD 4,000 to 100,000

Location: 34 McCallum Rd, Colombo 01000, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4 km

32

Khan Clock Tower

Khan Clock Tower

The Khan Clock Tower stands at the entrance of the legendary Pettah Market. Dating back to the early 20th century, the clock tower was established by a Paris family bearing the last name Khan. The Khan family were a part of several trades in Sri Lanka and were owners of various large-scale businesses, one of which was the Colombo Oil Mills. 

When the head of the family passed away in the year 1878, it fell on his two sons to run the family business. The clocktower was erected in the loving memory of Frame Bhikajee Khan. A four-storey structure celebrated the love and bond of the Khan family, even today.


Location: 136 Main St, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2 km

Other Tourist Places in Colombo

33

Asokaramaya Buddhist Temple

Asokaramaya Buddhist Temple

The Asokaramaya Buddhist Temple, not to be mistaken for the one in Kalutara, is a beautiful Buddhist temple steeped in culture and religion. The temple interiors and passageways are adorned with epic paintings of Lord Buddha’s life, depicting different stories. The temple is best known for the age-old custom where devotees pledge vows and make certain donations here. 

This has resulted in an interesting collection of items in the temple. The fact that it isn’t as popular as the other temples in Colombo may be ascribed to its seemingly uninteresting exterior, but the vibrant paintings housed inside are worth the visit!


Location: Thimbirigasyaya Road, Colombo 00500, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 7.3 km

34

Wolvendaal Church

Wolvendaal Church

Possibly the most prominent landmark of Dutch architecture in Sri Lanka, the Wolvendaal Church dates back to the year 1749. The name ‘Wolvendaal’ translates to ‘Dale of Wolves’ in Dutch, and has an amusing history to it. In the 19th century, the area was surrounded by total wilderness. The Dutch mistook the scavenging jackals for wolves and thus the name Wolvendaal came to be. 

One of the things that set the church apart from the rest is the fact that it is shaped like a Greek cross! The fascinating history of the church combined with the unusual architecture has tempted several travellers from all over the world. It is one of the most unusual places to visit in Colombo.


Timings: 09:00 AM to 04:00 PM everyday

Price: No entry fees

Location: Wolfendhal Lane, Colombo 01300, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2 km
35

Slave Island

Slave Island

Slave Island, as the name suggests, is an island that was once a slave prison used by the Dutch. The former slave prison has turned into a beautiful place housing a military base, botanical garden, and a handful of refreshing spots famous amongst picnickers. One of the oldest settlements in Colombo, Slave island sits in the middle of Beira Lake, one end of which was used by the Dutch to hold prisoners. It is also believed that crocodiles were released into the lake to prevent prisoners from escaping. 

What was once a slave prison has come to be known as one of the most popular places to visit in Colombo. The incredible Sri Siva Subramaniya Kovil temple is also located in Slave Island. The interesting history of the place will compel you to visit every time you’re in Sri Lanka.


Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 3 km

36

St. Lucia's Cathedral

St. Lucia's Cathedral

Out of the fifteen cathedrals that make up one of the main parishes of Sri Lanka, St. Lucia’s Cathedral is named after Saint Lucy. Located in the north-eastern part of Colombo, St.Lucia’s Cathedral is the official seal of the Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Colombo. Besides the religious and cultural significance that the cathedral holds in Sri Lanka, it is also one of the most aesthetically pleasing places to see in Colombo. 

You can point out prominent features belonging to the Renaissance and Baroque eras, along with colossal statues and white columns that will instantly teleport you to ancient Europe. Don’t miss the amazing choir when visiting here!


Timings: 05:30 AM to 12:00 PM; 02:00 PM to 07:00 PM everyday

Price: No entry fees

Location: Colombo 01300, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 3.5 km


37

Shri Ponnambalawaneswaram Kovil

Shri Ponnambalawaneswaram Kovil

Another beautiful Hindu temple, Shri Ponnambalawaneswaram Kovil is one of the most popular places to see in Colombo. Built almost entirely with south granite, what the temple lacks in area, it makes up for in aesthetics and architecture. The temple is named after a brave patriot who was martyred in the national independence war. 

One of the most beautifully celebrated festivals here in Pongal, during the month of January. A few steps from the main entrance of the temple is a little place where you wash your feet with water before stepping into the actual temple. Here you can admire and pray to the many idols of Hindu deities, too. 

The vibrant colours of the temple, coupled with the calming fragrance of flowers and garlands, make an intoxicating mix to relax your senses. If you’re even remotely interested in religion, there is hardly a more beautiful place to visit!


Timings: 05:00 AM to 08:00 PM

Price: No entry fees

Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 3 km


38

Temple of Sri Kailawasanathan Swami Devasthanam Kovil

Temple of Sri Kailawasanathan Swami Devasthanam Kovil

The Temple of Sri Kailawasanathan Swami Devasthanam, more commonly known as Kapikaawatha Shiva Temple is the oldest temple in Colombo. Built as a tribute to the Hindu gods Shiva and Ganesha, the temple is one of the most culturally beautiful places to see in Colombo and says a lot about the city’s heritage. This 200-years-old temple exhibits the quintessential Hindu architectural style, a rarity in the country. 

The vibrant building of the temple is adorned with stone sculptures and intricate carvings, including a lotus carved into the main door. If you like exploring culture and heritage, you should not miss a visit to this temple.


Price: No entry fees

Location: Sri Murugan St., Colombo 00200, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2.3 km

39

Colombo Lotus Tower

 Colombo Lotus Tower

One of the most unique structures in Colombo, the Lotus Tower is nearly 350 meters tall and towers over Slave Island. The top of the structure closely resembles the namesake flower. The tower serves as a transmission hub, which aims at improving the quality of transmission communication and broadcast. 

While that is the primary aim of Lotus Tower, it also features observation decks, shopping centres, restaurants, and banquet halls. It is one of the lesser-known tourist places in Colombo.


Location:  Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 3.4 km

40

Crow Island Beach Park

Crow Island Beach Park

Sprawled across 17 acres of land just beside the river Kelani, Crow Island Beach Park is a fresh addition to the public parks in Colombo. Opened to the public in the year 2006 for the first time, the park is replete with lush greenery, and features walking and cycling tracks, play area, shops and a beautiful freshwater lake. There are several benches under the shade of trees where you can lay back and unwind for a while. 

There are a few shops here for you to satiate your hunger pangs, too, along with a handful of restaurants. The highlight of the park may be the huge deck area which opens up to the sea! You know where to head to watch that beautiful sunset!


Timings: Open 24 hours

Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 6.8 km

41

National Art Gallery

Art meets culture at the beautiful National Art Gallery, making it one of the best attractions in Colombo. It is one of the finest art galleries in Sri Lanka, exhibiting a collection of statues, idols, portraits, and landscapes. It is the place to be if you want to explore Sri Lankan culture and heritage, both old as well as contemporary. 

The National Art Gallery is also a great place to discover young talent and is frequented by several famous artists. The walls carry several hundred paintings and canvases you can admire for hours on end.


Timings: 09:00 AM to 04:00 PM. Closed on Saturdays and Sundays.

Location: 106 Ananda Coomaraswamy Mawatha, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 4.4 km

42

Sambodhi Chaithya

Sambodhi Chaithya

One of the most iconic tourist places in Colombo, Sambodhi Chaithya is a magnificent Buddhist stupa which is built in the shape of a space rocket! The stupa is supported by colossal twin arches, and the structure is visible even from the sea. All surrounding towers and skyscrapers dwarf in comparison with the 80-meters-tall stupa, which dominates the horizon. The temple is 11 storeys high and there are 258 steps to reach the top. 

When you enter the dome, you can see a shrine with four statues of Lord Buddha in the middle of the floor. The dome is decorated with 31 murals which play out different scenes from Buddha’s life. The significance of Sambodhi Chaithya, both religious as well as aesthetic, attracts travellers from all over the country.


Timings: 10:00 AM to 06:00 PM

Location: Chaithya Road, Colombo 00100, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 2.5 km

43

Beddagana Wetland Park

Beddagana Wetland Park

Beddagana Wetland Park is a fairly new addition to the list of famous places to visit in Colombo. It was built by the Sri Lankan Government with the intention of protecting the land from floods, besides uplifting the quality of life lead by the locals. Covered in beautiful grasslands and lush greenery housing several wildlife species, it is no surprise that Beddagana Wetland Park is also popular for being a great romantic retreat.


Timings: 06:30 AM to 05:30 PM

Price: LKR 100 per head; LKR 50 for kids

Location: 139 Rampart Rd, Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte 10100, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 10.5 km

44

Sri Lanka Planetarium

Sri Lanka Planetarium

Sri Lanka Planetarium has earned quite a reputation amongst stargazers and astronomy enthusiasts, both local and travellers alike. Founded in the year 1965, it is the first and only planetarium in the country. The unusual, lotus-shaped architecture of the planetarium is simply incredible. After a well-earned reconstruction in the year 2014, the planetarium is equipped with 570 seats facing an amazing 4D projector that guides you through a truly vivid and breathtaking journey through the universe. 

Located on the campus of the University of Colombo, the planetarium has also been known to run free shows on Sunday! If you’re a stargazer or are travelling with kids, this is one of the most exciting places to visit in Colombo.


Timings: 08:00 AM to 04:00 PM. Closed on Mondays.

Price: LKR 100 per adult; LKR 30 per child

Location: Prof. Stanley Wijesundera Mawatha, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 5.5 km
45

Arugam Bay Beach

Arugam Bay Beach

If you’re looking to take a refreshing detour from the city and into the wild, Arugam Bay Beach is the place to be! The tropical paradise of Arugam is the ideal place to indulge in adventures, or even just to sit back and soak in the radiant sunlight. The Beach is free from the mindless city chatter and allows you the peace and quiet you need while keeping your adventurous spirit alive. 

Pamper your taste buds with some lip-smacking rice and curries at the famous Tsunami Hotel after a thrilling surf ride. If you have enough time, a trip to the Kumana National Park is almost obligatory when travelling to the Arugam Bay Beach.


Timings: Open 24 hours

Price: No entry fees

Location: Arugam Bay Beach, Sri Lanka

Distance from Colombo bus stand: 340 km

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The transfers was very comfort , safe and secure and we enjoyed the ride a lot.
The transfer was on time. Driver was so nice and experienced and everything was perfectly managed.
Excellent
Had a great experience with this tour, never thought we could wave around this much of the City!
Very nice discovery of Colombo's food and people. Great way to break into a new country.
We are so glad to note we had a wonderful and memorable ride on board the Colombo City Tour..! It's great we 'captured' the real essence of Colombo in that short period of time... amidst the hustle and rush in the busy commercial capital.
The vehicle was in a good condition. Neat and clean, the driver had good driving skill plus he was a knowledgeable guide.
It was a very comfortable ride from Colombo to Negombo as the driver was very professional. Got the deal at the best price.
The transfer service was very good and the driver was professional and knew where we had to go. Nice service by thrillophilia!
Our driver was knowledgable, polite and friendly, we reached Galle on Time.
the transfer was on time and the driver was an experienced one all thanks to Thrillophilia forthe arrangement.

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