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10 Things to do in Galle

  • Galle comes with its own inherent beauty where and it showcases some of the most beautiful things to do in Galle. You can have a chance to visit some of the most popular historic places such as the Flag rock and it is one of the best places to catch beautiful sunsets. During the day you will find many people jumping from the rock into the waters. You can also find some local vendors alongside the road selling fresh papaya with chilli powder.

    The Dutch reformed church can be just another destination where you can spend some time. It is quite interesting to know that the floors which are paved with gravestones. If on your way of exploration you feel hungry, you can stop by Fortaleza which has some classy interiors which is well matched with some fine cuisine such as lamb chops and sea food.

    Here are some of the best things to do in Galle that you should experience:

  • 01Scuba Diving

    Image Credit : Silke Baron
    Water is aplenty in Sri Lanka and Galle is quite celebrated for water sports such as Scuba Diving. This sport is an underwater experience where divers wear oxygen apparatus and dive deep into the sea to observe the sea species living underneath. The noiseless world under the water is soothing and is a kind of meditation.Scuba Diving in Unawatuna is one of the best places for this sport. The center is a 10-minute drive from Galle city. The diving institutes offer different levels of courses such as open water dive, refresh dive course, fresher’s dive, master level diving, reef diving, night diving etc.

    Image Credits : Via Tsuji

    Location: Unawatuna Beach diving sites include Napoleon Reef, Galapita gala

     Includes certification courses, a dive to Rangoon ship wreck 30 ft under the sea 

    Best seasons:
    The best time to visit this place is  during the month of  November to May

     Approximate price starts from $25 per dive and if you are opting for a course it starts from $300

  • 02Flag Rock

    Image Credit : Dave Lonsdale
    After a tiresome day, if you wish to end it with some peace and watch the sun set on the horizon, hear the seagulls beckoning you and also observe the waves crash the rocks forming a soulful music then Galle Flag Rock Bastion is where you need to go.  The Flag Rock an ex-Portuguese Bastion, situated at the southernmost end of the Galle Fort, today is a popular destination for tourists to witness the sunset. This Rock was a natural defence center during the Dutch period, from where ships were alerted about dangers lurking and also from the unseen rocks underwater by firing Musket shots from the Pigeon Island.

    Location: Rampart St. Galle 

    Scenic surrounding; to your west, you will be able to locate the lighthouse and the Gunpowder Museum opposite to the Meeran Masjid.
  • 03Galle Fort/Dutch Fort

    Image Credit : Towle N

    Dutch Fort is one of the most extraordinary historical and archeological sites of the world. The fort was first constructed by Portuguese in the late sixteenth century and fortified expansively by the Dutch in the mid-seventeenth century. It is a stunning blend of archeology, architecture, and history in the backdrop of the tropical atmosphere.  Its appeal lies in that it is not just a historical monument. Even today the life is buzzing inside it, with a museum, gorgeous villas, administrative offices, antique shops, cafes, bookstores and lifestyle stores.

    Image Credits : Ankur P

    Location: Situated in the Southern Sri Lankan Coast in the Bay of Galle just 132 KM from Colombo.

    Highlights: A stroll on the streets will let you experience the beautiful architecture of the colonial style buildings that still exudes the warmth and charm. Visit National Maritime Museum, stop by Meera Mosque and enjoy delicacies at Lucky Fort Restaurant and Galle Fort Hotel Restaurant.

    Timing: Opened 24 hours a day 

    Cycling Trip to Galle Fort and the Galle City

    Cycling Trip to Galle Fort and the Galle City

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  • 04Go for Spa

    You have come for a holiday and you don’t go to a spa and massage, then ideally you have wasted your vacation by 10%. The best thing you could gift to your body is complete nourishment through Galle’s Spas. They are widely known in the country for their services, therapy, and massages. Galle fort is considered one of the best in the city with natural rejuvenating therapies such as Ayurveda. Few Spas also offer Yoga and meditation as packages, Unawatuna Island is the major center for authentic spas and wellness therapy in Galle.

    Highlights: The Spa therapy includes physiotherapy, body massage, deep tissue massage, face massage, hand and feet nourishments, total body care, yoga and a variety of combo offers. Other provisions include reflexology, waxing, detox treatments etc. and all these is obtained at the most serene atmosphere surrounded by overwhelming nature.

    Location: Unawatuna, Galle
  • 05Lagoon Canoeing Tour

    Canoeing is a beautiful experience in Galle. Unawatuna is an astounding island where most of the adventure sports happen in Galle. It is brimmed with canals, lagoons, beaches, rivers and reservoirs. Canoeing can take you in the midst of the Natural beauty of flora and fauna characterised by changing landscapes and fascinating mangroves.

    Location: Unuwatuna Lagoon, galle Hours and timings: starts at 8- 8:30 am and comprised of two hours of paddling

     Canoeing trip includes local guide, water and refreshments and a life jacket. You can reach the Unawatuna Lagoon by a tuk-tuk. You would get to explore coastal flora and fauna untouched by the human civilization, the deeper sector of mangroves etc 

    Best season: November to May
    Price: Approximate price starts from $ 30, per canoe 2 - 3 people can accommodate 
    Lagoon Canoeing Tour in Unawatuna

    Lagoon Canoeing Tour in Unawatuna

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  • 06Mountain Bike Tour

    Image Credit : Dai Williams
    Mountain biking is more fun than normal cycling. The rocky paths, gravelled roads, tracks unused for years and the adrenalin rush to speed up are the absolute reasons to try this jaunt. At Galle, Unawatuna is the place where you would find centres for this sport. You can choose your type of bikes from an array of selection and you will be provided with a local guide, helmets, and refreshments. The guide helps you to know the place better with his narrations and titbits of information.

    Image Credits : Dai Williams

    Location: Biking centers at Mirissa and Unawatuna

     You would get to see the real Sri Lankan villages, peacocks, chameleons, buffalo, mangroves, coconut farms and tropical forests. You can also eat homemade authentic food in one of the many villages you would come across. 

      8:30 AM or 2:30 PM as per your convenience

      Approximate price starts from  $16- $50 
    Mountain Biking Tour at Akuressa in Sri Lanka

    Mountain Biking Tour at Akuressa in Sri Lanka

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  • 07Whale Watching

    Image Credit : Selbe Lynn
    Whale watching is an interesting fun activity in Galle. Sri Lanka is surrounded by ocean which makes it more accessible to observe these huge sea mammals and quite a number of dolphins too. You have to start quite early to the beach to catch a boat. If you have come to Galle for a holiday then most of the Hotels provide a trip to ‘whale watching’. Otherwise, you can get into the beach directly and go for it.

    Location: Mirissa Beach, Naval Harbour and Dondra Point 

    Boat ride into the ocean just as the sun is about to rise is gorgeous. You should definitely carry a camera and binoculars to capture the experience. If you are lucky enough you might also get to see blue whales along with the normal ones and dolphins. Please carry medicines if you are prone to sea sickness.

    Best seasons:
     The best time for this fun activity is during the month of November to April

     Approximate price starts from 3500 LKR-6000 LKR

  • 08Snorkelling

    Image Credit : Nico Aguilera
    Snorkelling is a water sport where snorkelers swim on the surface of the water or dive deep into the water wearing a plastic mask with a tube attached, known as a snorkel. People also wear fins and wetsuits for better navigation. The Jungle beach in Galle, which offers a perfect location for Snorkelling, is a semi-hidden bay enclosed in a jungle. The reef is not dangerous as it is partially dead. The water is current is not strong so you can safely swim near the rocky edges.

    Image Credits : Acquarius Sea Tours

     30 mins walk from Unawatuna 

    There is a small restaurant that serves simple delicious snacks and beverages. The snorkelling is offered by professional instructors from PADI. You may see reef fishes, crabs, moray eels, turtles, barracudas and parrot fishes; Walk to sunset point.

    Timings: The best time for this activity starts from early morning to sunset.

    Price: Approximate price starts from 15 LKR to 800 LKR

  • 09Lagoon & Village Cycling

    The best way to get away from the monotonous life in the city is to cycle through the quaint village of Galle. Lagoon and Village cycling in Galle is a perfect way to spend your weekends. Ride at your own pace and you will be able to cover 12 km easily. The cycling routes in Galle are usually the less travelled ones into the gravelled paths, through the mangroves, paddy fields, grasslands, local villages and their shopping stalls and sparse jungles. 

    Highlights: Three to four hours of utmost pleasure. The cycling expedition takes you by the local industries, lagoons and mangroves. Also, in the local village, you can learn to make coconut ropes or catch crabs from the villagers.

    Timings: The activity starts at 8:30 AM and ends at 2 PM

    Price: Approximate price ranges from 16 USD to 50 USD

    Family Cycling Tour in Galle

    Family Cycling Tour in Galle

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  • 10Dutch Reformed Church

    Image Credit : yeowatzup
    One of the finest and most traditional Tourist attractions in Galle which is worth to visit and admire is the Galle Fort. The Dutch Reformed Church is the ancient building located in the premises of the fort. The building’s date goes back the 18th century during the Dutch period.

    A walk through the Fort ground along with the humble caretaker, immersing in his never-ending fancy stories will take you back to the era whence it was built. The Church is also known as Groot Kert.

    Image Credits : Matthew Goulding

    Highlights: Many tombstones dating back to the 17th can be observed; this church also is a Cruciform with shorter transepts separated by two arches. The floor is marked with gravestones. The beautiful pulpit made from Malaysian wood, calamander is a beautiful sight and near to the pulpit is the memorial of De Ly Family.

    Location: Church Street, Galle fort

    Timings: 9 am to 5 Pm