How to Locate Attractions in Colombo
Colombo, the commercial capital of the emerald isle of Sri Lanka, has many attractions to offer its visitors. There is a charming mix of historical buildings and modern developments available for you to enjoy during your stay. If you are staying at a Colombo City Hotel, you will be in a good position to explore all that Colombo has to offer.
Cover the Historic Places
One iconic landmark in Colombo is the Independence Square, built in 1948 to commemorate Sri Lanka’s independence from British Rule. It is said that the unusual architecture of the memorial hall is based on the Royal Hall of the Kandyan kingdom. Beneath the memorial hall is a museum with well sculpted stone busts commemorating those who led Sri Lanka’s independence movement and an assortment of intriguing memorabilia. Another beautifully preserved building is the colonial mansion which has been converted into the Colombo National Museum and holds some of Sri Lanka’s most treasured artifacts. It holds some of the country’s best ancient paintings and sculptures which can be traced as far as the 4th Century B.C.
Enjoy Breathtaking Beauty by the Sea
If you are staying at a seaside hotel in Colombo such as the Mandarina Colombo, you would be lucky enough to have breathtaking views of the sea. If not, it is worth making a visit to the part of Colombo that meets the waves. The Galle Face Green was originally created in 1856 by the Governor of Ceylon for the ladies and children of Colombo. The area is still popular with the residents of Colombo and offers a great number of activities including kite flying and an opportunity to sample local street food. For a breathtaking panoramic view of the Indian Ocean, you can also access the Colombo light house situated on the waterfront.
Survey Sri Lanka’s Modern Developments
The Dutch Hospital Shopping Precinct in Fort is a marvelous blend of shops and restaurants under a fully restored building that used to be a hospital during the Dutch occupation of Sri Lanka. Similarly, the Independence Arcade is yet another meticulously restored building. Once an asylum, it is now home to a score of upscale restaurants, a movie theatre and shops. The Nelum Pokuna, which translates as the Lotus Pond, is also a fundamental landmark in central Colombo which is worth a visit. Inspired by a 12th Century Lotus Pond in Polonnaruwa, the building was built as a cooperative venture between the Sri Lankan and Chinese governments.
Visit Some Religious Sites
The Gangaramaya Temple is a large imposing building close to the Beira Lake and decorated with brass and gold leaf. This extensive building with a temple, a museum and a religious library has attracted many tourists due to its stunning architecture and imposing statues. There are also well drawn paintings decorating the inner walls of the temple. Should you visit during May, you are likely to see the temple at its best as it is decorated with Vesak lanterns and it often attracts several thousand people during this religious festival. The Gangaramaya Temple is atypical of normal temple architecture as there are touches of Sri Lanka, Indian, Thai and Chinese architecture. The Sri Kailawasanathar Swami Devasthanam Kovil is a Hindu Temple with ornate carvings and a spray of colours. Located in the heart of bustling Pettah, the Jami -Ul-Alfar Mosque is a captivating building with a striking red and white exterior making it a photographer’s dream. It must be noted that most of these places either charge entrance fees or photography fees.
Colombo provides a quaint mix of modern and historic attractions for its visitors.