The Best Places To Visit In Colombo During Your Stay In Colombo, Sri Lanka

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Places to visit in Colombo

With its bustling streets and vibrant atmosphere, Colombo holds the distinction of being Sri Lanka’s commercial capital and the largest city by population. Colombo is not just the financial hub of Sri Lanka but also a popular tourist destination. It is in the island’s western province and combines historical sites with contemporary living. There are many places to visit in Colombo.

Top places to visit in Colombo

There are a lot of places to visit in Colombo. Here are some details of top places in Colombo. 

Colombo Port City

Port City is a special economic zone and a financial center. The port city project started nearly ten years ago and is still under construction. But it is already a famous tourist destination. This amazing city comprises several restaurants, a scenic walking path, and playing areas, including a private artificial seawater pool.

places to visit in Colombo

Since the location is beautiful, many locals also use it for photo shoots. Since the place is in the heart of Colombo city and is easy to access for this place, Port City is one of the top places every tourist must visit. 

One Galle Face Mall

This is Arguably the most significant and busiest shopping mall, which includes hundreds of shops, a superior-level food court, a beautiful play area, and an internationally identified PVR Cinema complex.

best places to visit in Colombo

During the weekends, you will have to wait hours to find a free spot in the car park of this mall, which has more than 500 parking spaces, which shows how busy and attractive this place is. You will enjoy shopping in this mall mainly because you can find anything. The cinema complex is more comfortable and worthwhile than the facilities provided. Without hesitation, you should pick One Galle Face Mall as a must-visit place in Colombo. t is within 2km from the central bus stand of Colombo and the Colombo Fort railway Station. 

Gangarama Temple

This is one of the most sacred temples in Sri Lanka. It is located in Beira Lake and has a very scenic view. This temple is famous for being a mixture of modern and cultural architecture.

good places to visit in Colombo

Every year, this temple organizes a prominent “Perahera” ceremony, a unique attraction on the island. Any tourists have identified this place as a must-visit place. 

Bally’s Casino

This is the biggest and the most luxurious casino on the island, with unlimited entertainment options. This is under government inspection, and the security provided is very much appreciated.

top places to visit in Colombo

If you wish to spend some money to have a world-class casino experience in Sri Lanka, Bally’s is the place to visit. 

National Museum

Started back in 1877, this is the most complete museum in Sri Lanka. You can enjoy the cultural and natural heritage of the Island country inside the museum, and this is a beautiful place for both local and foreign people.

places to visit in Colombo area

It is nearly 5km from the central bus stand in Colombo and the Colombo Fort railway station. You must have 3-4 hours to visit this place. 

Lotus Tower

This symbolic landmark in Sri Lanka was constructed nearly five years back and is still not fully occupied. But you can enjoy the view from there and find some great restaurants. Lotus Tower is the 2nd tallest tower in South Asia, 11th in Asia, and 19th in the world.

top places to visit in Colombo

This tower is shaped like a lotus and is used for communication, observation, and other leisure activities. This is the most attractive tourist destination in Colombo. 

Arcade Independence Square

This famous and attractive shopping mall in the Independence Square area has almost everything inside. This is a collection of renovated buildings with a mix of colonial and modern architectural concepts. 

good places to visit in Colombo

Sri Lanka Planetarium

This is the only planetarium in Sri Lanka, and it is under the supervision of the government. The students in local schools mostly visit this place, but the foreign tourists do not forget to have an experience inside here. Since this is in the middle of Colombo, you can easily find transportation facilities to visit here. 

places to visit in colombo
Sri Lanka Planetarium

Port maritime Museum

This was built back in 1676 by the Dutch, and most importantly th, it is the only surviving Dutch building in the Colombo port area. After a costly renovation, this was re-opened in 2003 and is now a beautiful place to visit.

top places to visit in Colombo

Since Sri Lanka is an island, the maritime industry is vital in the country, displayed in this place. 

Apart from the ones above, there are some good places to visit in Colombo.

St. Anthony’s Shrine, Kochchikade

A very famous and sacred roman catholic church in Sri Lanka located in the Colombo city area. This church is dedicated to Anthony of Padua. The new-look church was re-opened in 1940 and has historical value as well. This certainly is an excellent place to visit in Colombo. 

free places to visit in Colombo

Colombo Gold Market

It is known as the Gold Center Colombo, and the Sri Lanka Urban Development Authority controls this market. This place has over 80 jewelry shops and many financial institutions, including the leading Banks of Sri Lanka. There is a gem and jewelry authority branch to certify the genuineness of the gem & jewelry. If you wish to buy quality jewelry in Sri Lanka, this is an excellent place to visit. 

places to visit in Colombo

Kingsbury Hotel

This iconic hotel is in the heart of Colombo, within walking distance of the central Bus stand and the Fort Railway Station. With a breathtaking beach view and luxury facilities, this is the most suitable hotel for a stay in Colombo, Sri Lanka. 

places to visit in Colombo

Nelum Pokuna Theatre

This opened in 2011 and has an auditorium with over 1200 seats, and this is the most complete auditorium on the island. Famous local artists currently attract attention to this place by organizing their shows there. If you wish to participate in such a show in his place, that would be an unforgettable experience. 

places to visit in Colombo

National Art Gallery

Opened in the 1930s, this place has become the most utilized venue for Sri Lankan exhibitions. It has three galleries. The main one has a permanent set of portraits and landscapes, and the other two can serve as exhibition venues. It would help if you visited this place to have some quality time.  

places to visit in Colombo

Best Places to Visit in Colombo

Havelock City Mall

This mall was opened in 2023 and has been a good attraction for the locals since its opening. The mall has several shops, food courts, and play areas. This mall is the first luxurious mall experience away from the city, and people enjoy it. It is a great place to visit. 

Best places to visit in Colombo

Sri Vihar

This is a famous Indian restaurant chain in Colombo with branches in Colombo 7 and Nugegoda. This restaurant is a favorite for authentic Indian vegetarian food and Indian sweets. You will enjoy the food here if you wish to visit this place. 

best places to visist in Colombo

Colombo Fort Railway Station

This is the major railway station on the island. The present railway station was opened in 1917 and is in the heart of Colombo city. The Fort railway station operates as a hub, connecting all the railroads on the island. If you wish to visit, you will find some old architectural designs inside the railway station. 

Bellagio Casino

Established in 1998, this is a leading casino and nightlife spot in Colombo. This works under the supervision of the government, and you will not have to worry about the safety. 

Since Colombo is the largest city by population, there are a lot of places to visit in the Colombo area.

Mount Lavinia Beach and Hotel

The hotel is located 14km from the city and has more than 275 rooms. The hotel is one of the oldest hotels on the island. Initially constructed in 1806 as the residence for the English governor, it was converted to a hotel in 1947. The beach is right next to the hotel and is also very famous. You will enjoy a sunset at Mount Lavinia Beach if you visit.  

Kelaniya Temple

Kelaniya temple is 10km away from the city and is one of the most sacred temples in the country. This is also very famous for the paintings done by the artist “Solies Mendis” inside the temple, and you will find a calm environment there.

Liberty Plaza Shopping Complex

This mall is around 5km from the city. It is famous for its cinema and the shops inside. 

Majestic City Shopping Complex

Once, this was the main shopping complex in the Colombo district, and it still has a lot of attraction for the locals. You will find various shops, a good food court, and cinema and play areas. 

Explore the Top Places to Visit in Colombo to start a fascinating journey.

Colombo Galbokka Lighthouse

This is in the Galbokka point of the Colombo port. The ports authority of Sri Lanka maintains this place. You will also find a good restaurant opposite the lighthouse, maintained and operated by the Sri Lanka Navy. 

Old Parliament Building

This is the house of the presidential secretariat of Sri Lanka. The looks of Greek architecture designed this. This is an old building that opened in 1930 and has a very unique look as well. 

Royal Colombo Golf Club

This is regarded as the finest golf club in Sri Lanka. You will not find a better golf-playing area in the province than this. Although this area is highly residential, the authorities have maintained it well. 

Marino Mall and Hotel

The Marino Mall and Hotel is a newly opened place. You will find rooms and a rooftop pool area in the hotel and a fine shopping mall experience in the mall. There are several food outlets and bars as well. 

Free places to visit in Colombo 

In some places, you don’t need to pay money for tickets. You can visit, watch, and enjoy its beauty.

Galle Face Green

Galle Face Green is a sizeable ocean-side park stretching over 500 meters through the coastal line. This is a beautiful place, mainly in the evenings. There are some food stalls also if you wish to have some snacks. 

Wolvendaal church

This is one of the oldest protestant churches on the island and is in the middle of Colombo. This is a well-known sacred place for Sri Lankans. 

Khan Clock Tower

This popular clock tower marks the entrance to the famous Pettah market. This was built in the early 20th century by an Indian family. Earlier, this also had a water fountain, but it no longer operates. 

Chatham Street

You will find various architectural designs and buildings on this street in the middle of the city. At one end, you will also find the president’s house of Sri Lanka and a lighthouse that is not operating anymore. 

There are natural places to visit in Colombo where you can feel the beauty of the environment.  

Beira Lake

Situated in the heart of Colombo, this lake served various purposes, including transportation during the colonial era by the Portuguese, Dutch, and English people. The name “Beira” is Portuguese. You can enjoy a boat ride here if you visit. 

free places to visit in Sri Lanka

Attidiya Bird Sanctuary

This sanctuary has a rich and diverse birdlife despite the comparatively small area. The best time to visit here is in the morning. This place is nearly 12km away from Colombo city. 

places to visit in colombo
Attidiya Bird Sanctuary

Crow Island Beach Park

This is a coastal wetland urban park in Colombo. There are multiple bird species and other species as well. Locals mainly use the walking path that goes through this park. 

places to visist in Colombo

Beddagana Wetland Park

This park is in Kotte, which is 10km away from the city. You will find various types of birds and butterflies in this park. Also, this park is famous for its relaxed and natural environment. 

When you plan to visit Colombo with a friend, here are some ideal places.

Viharamahadevi Park

This park is next to the Colombo town hall area. More than ten bus routes go through this park area, so you can easily access it. You can enjoy bicycle and horse rides with friends and visit the aquarium inside the park. 

Colombo City Center

As described by the name, this is in the middle of the city. Large-scale shopping malls, food courts, play areas, and an international cinema experience can be found here. This is an ideal place to hang out with friends. 

Pettah Floating Market

A fresh shopping experience can be found here as the shops are on a floating board. This is right next to the central bus stand in Colombo. You will find various shops and food cabins there as well. 

Aluthkade Street Foods

This place operates only in the afternoon; you will enjoy a variety of Sri Lankan, Indian, Chinese, and Western fast food. This is a trendy place, especially among young people. 

places to visit in Colombo

A place to visit in Colombo City

Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque

This is mainly known as the Red mosque. This is famous for its eye-catching, unique look. Red and white colors envelop the entire building, creating a striking and vibrant visual presence. Most tourists visit this place to take photographs. This is in the very center of Colombo City.

Laksala

This is the only state-owned gift and souvenir boutique. If you visit Laksala, you will find wooden arts and crafts, Batiks, Masks, etc., unique to Sri Lanka. There are several Laksala branches, but the main branch is in the center of Colombo City. 

Sambodhi Chaithya

This stupa is created with reinforced concrete and in the Colombo harbor. The main difference compared to others is that this stupa is built above from the ground level on a platform supported by arches. 

When you plan to visit in Colombo in 2 days, here are some suggested places to visit in Colombo. 

Dehiwala Zoological gardens

This was founded in 1936 and is around 20km from Colombo City. Inside the zoo, you will find various Animals, birds, fish, etc., worldwide. You will need some time to complete the visit to this zoo since there is a larger area to cover. 

Leisure World Water Park

This is the first water park in Sri Lanka, located 33km away from Colombo City. You will find many activities and unlimited entertainment here if you visit. This park has a separate area for Kids as well. 

Kalutara Bodhiya

This is in Kalutara district, more than 50km from Colombo. Kalutara Bodhiya is a very sacred place for the local Buddhist people. This is in a beautiful place next to the Kalu River. 

Richmond Castle

Located in the Kalutara District, this house, once owned by a wealthy Sri Lankan who passed away long ago, is a testament to its historical significance. According to reports, it followed the design of a palace in India in its construction. You will enjoy seeing the architectural designs in this place. 

Places to visit near the airport

Negombo Beach Park

This beach is famous for its golden color sand. This is just a short distance from the Bandaranayake International Airport. You will enjoy morning and evening walks here. 

places to visit in Colombo near airport

Suriya Resort – Waikkal

This is a famous hotel located next to the Negombo Lagoon. This hotel has over 100 rooms, excellent service, and a great seafood menu. 

places to visit in Colombo near airport

Hamilton Canal

The British created this to drain salt water away from the Muturajawela wetland in 1804. Currently, it is not in operation as in the past, but this place still captures the attention of tourists.

places to visit in Colombo near airport

Wrapping Up 

Colombo’s tourist destinations offer a varied and remarkable experience, blending the city’s modern, historical, and cultural aspects.

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