Colombo

Travel Guide
Colombo showing heritage elements and a sunset
Colonial charm and Buddhist spirituality mix with beachside entertainment, bustling shopping districts and a love of cricket in Sri Lanka’s coastal capital.

Colombo is a showcase of Sri Lanka’s Asian and European heritage. It’s where the fast-paced chaos of the continent’s cities meets a lingering colonial ambiance and contemporary fashion. In Colombo, ancient religious shrines stand next to churches, and skyscrapers rise above time-honored shops. Pretty parks are a reminder of Colombo’s “Garden City of the East” nickname while beaches offer an introduction to the island’s 833-mile (1,340-kilometer) coastline.

Discover the spiritual serenity that exists amid the mayhem of the city streets at Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple and lakeside Seema Malaka Buddhist Temple. The contrasting Gothic Old Town Hall and neoclassical New Town Hall sit on the edge of gorgeous Viharamahadevi Park. Visit European-influenced churches, including the Dutch-built Wolvendaal Church, Portuguese St. Anthony’s Church and Scottish St. Andrew’s Church.

Browse art collections that date back to the 4th century B.C. at Colombo National Museum and learn about Dutch rule at the Dutch Period Museum. Ape Gama is an open-air folk museum that brings to life the customs of a Sri Lankan village via mock rural scenes. The elaborately decorated Independence Memorial Hall commemorates the nation breaking free from the British Empire.

Pettah is Colombo’s bustling shopping quarter, famous for traditional shops and markets such as Pettah Floating Market. Go to Arcade Independence Square and Crescat Boulevard for brand-name and upmarket fashion. Witness the city’s passion for cricket while attending a match at Premadasa International Cricket Stadium. Or, play a round of 18 holes at the immaculate Royal Colombo Golf Club.

Watch the sunset and snack on spicy street food during an evening stroll on Galle Green Face Promenade. Find an aquarium, beer garden and outdoor food court at Diyatha Uyana waterfront park. Mount Lavinia Beach boasts golden sand and chic seafront bars. Spot exotic animals at Dehiwala National Zoo and ride waterslides at Leisure World.

Reach Colombo by flying to Bandaranaike International Airport, located an hour’s drive from the city center. Get around the city via low-cost buses, trains and tuk-tuks.

Where to stay in Colombo

Mandarina Colombo
Mandarina Colombo
5 out of 5
433, Galle Road, Colombo, 00300
The price is $50 per night from Dec 12 to Dec 13
$50
per night
Dec 12 - Dec 13
Stay at this 5-star luxury hotel in Colombo. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and a rooftop terrace. Our guests praise the restaurant and the helpful staff in ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (584 reviews)
"Central location"

Reviewed on Nov 26, 2022

Mandarina Colombo
Granbell Hotel Colombo
Granbell Hotel Colombo
3.5 out of 5
282/5, Kollupitiya Road, Colombo 03, Colombo, Western Province, 00300
The price is $67 per night from Dec 16 to Dec 17
$67
per night
Dec 16 - Dec 17
Stay at this 3.5-star business-friendly hotel in Colombo. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and 2 restaurants. Popular attractions Liberty Plaza and United States ...
3.8/5 Good! (8 reviews)
"Friendly staff, clean property abd very convenient location"

Reviewed on Nov 15, 2022

Granbell Hotel Colombo
Marino Beach Colombo
Marino Beach Colombo
5 out of 5
590 Marine Drive, Colombo, WP, 00300
The price is $65 per night from Dec 11 to Dec 12
$65
per night
Dec 11 - Dec 12
Stay at this 5-star luxury hotel in Colombo. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and 2 restaurants. Our guests praise the pool and the helpful staff in our reviews. ...
4.6/5 Wonderful! (501 reviews)
"generally staff is very good, facility is clean, services are excellent. Its a great value for the money."

Reviewed on Nov 29, 2022

Marino Beach Colombo
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Mayura Apartments
Mayura Apartments
3 out of 5
50/1D Mayura Place, Wellawatte, Colombo 6, Colombo, 00600
Stay at this 3-star aparthotel in Colombo. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and a fitness center. Popular attractions Isipathanaramaya Buddhist Temple and Raux ...
Mayura Apartments
Ocean Edge Suites & Hotel Colombo
Ocean Edge Suites & Hotel Colombo
4 out of 5
Marine Drive (Kollupitiya), 10th Lane, No.24, Colombo, 03
Stay at this 4-star business-friendly aparthotel in Colombo. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and breakfast. Our guests praise the breakfast and the helpful staff ...
3.4/5 (79 reviews)
Find a better alternative!
"The hotel is definitely overpriced! Cleanliness lacks. basic amenities like faulty air con was a put off! However, mr tushaar was helpful to move us to a better room quickly. There were dead cockroaches here and there. Though the lobby is renovated, poor flooring and dirty worn out rugs in the room ..."

Reviewed on Jan 18, 2020

Ocean Edge Suites & Hotel Colombo
Ishq Colombo
Ishq Colombo
3 out of 5
17/2 Alfred Place, Colombo 03, Sri Lanka, Colombo, 00030
Stay at this 3-star villa in Colombo. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and private pools. Popular attractions Saskia Fernando Gallery and High Commission of Malaysia ...
Ishq Colombo
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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