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Updated by Auburn Silver on Nov 29, 2016
Headline for Must Visit Attractions in Galle – City of Ancient Heritage
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Must Visit Attractions in Galle – City of Ancient Heritage

Galle is home to the Old Dutch Fort a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It's also a port city, home to a traditional fisher community. Enjoy the thrills of the sun, sand & surf cocooned in ancient history.


Explore the Old Dutch Fort

The Old Dutch Fort is the city's iconic attraction that lures hundreds of visitors daily. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the well-preserved fort is made up of a criss-cross of cobblestone streets that meander around many fascinating relics. There are the old colonial bungalows with expansive verandas while lovely sunny cafes are ideal to stop for a 'cuppa' and people watch. You can visit the marine museum, ancient Anglican stone church and marvel at the vintage lighthouse.


Stroll Along the Ramparts

The sea surrounds three ends of the Galle Fort as such the ramparts are ideal for enjoying a leisurely walk as sea breezes invigorate your mind body and soul. The ancient bastions still stand and offer a mesmerizing taste of its past grandeur when the fort was fortified with 109 cannons, guard stations and dungeons along this region. One of the best sunsets in Galle is witnessed from the ramparts making late afternoons an ideal time to plan a walk there.


The Galle Museum

Continue your exploration within the Galle Fort as you visit the Galle Museum; housed within the oldest building there. A fine example of traditional Dutch architecture the marvellous and expansive bungalow once served as the residence for junior officers of the Dutch East India Company. There are some interesting displays within the museum such as the exhibits dedicated to legendary Chinese explorer Zheng He, who paid the city a visit between 1406 and 1433 with a fleet of over 200 ships. Before the splendour of the Old Dutch Fort dominated the city Galle was a popular trading port city that was visited by Arabian, Greek. Roman, Indian, Chinese and Persian tradesmen; as such the museum is full of relics belonging to these vibrant communities.


The Dutch Reform Church

The oldest church within the fort, the Groote Kirk sits on the highest point in the fort. Built in 1755 on the site of two former Dutch churches the building still retains the belfry from one of these buildings. Construction was initiated in 1682 although it took over 70 years for the place to be completed due to a lack of funds. This church amongst many other vintage relics makes Galle Fort hotels a popular choice amongst tourists. Those who want the fort within close proximity for exploration can consider the likes of Jetwing Lighthouse Club just one of the Galle beachfront hotels that offer guests the privilege of sun, sand and surf at the doorstep.


The Mansion House Museum

Located on Rampart Street this ancient mansion is a beautiful Dutch colonial bungalow. The building is resplendent with wide verandas held up by wooden pillars that skirt around the house, a beautiful central courtyard and an old water well that once supplied water to the house. The collection which is the private treasures of the mansion's owner has been accumulated over a period of 40 years. The artefacts are quite interesting made up of the now banned tortoise shell combs, household utensils, ancient lamps, vintage crockery and much more. Best of all entrance to the museum is free.