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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for Things to Know before Travelling to Colombo - Cosmopolitan Hub: Historical Sanctuary
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Things to Know before Travelling to Colombo - Cosmopolitan Hub: Historical Sanctuary

Sri Lanka is rife with all manner of experiences; culture, tradition and smiling locals. Colombo is a marvellous melting pot of all this with 'trafficy' streets, bustling sidewalks and busy locals.


It's Safe to Travel to Colombo

Colombo was once deemed unsafe during the height of the Civil War that rocked the country from 1983 to 2009. The war is now ended and Colombo is a thriving tourist hub, travel to the city is safe with general precautions needed when travelling to unknown destinations. For instance you need to look both ways before crossing the busy streets of Colombo and understand that no matter how big those smiles are locals are quite the daredevils once behind the wheel of a vehicle; do look both ways when crossing the streets.


Stay Out of Political Debates

The war maybe over but in the hearts of those who lost many a loved one the agony still prevails. Who was right and who was wrong should not be debates you should venture into unless of course you are a scholar on the intricacies of the Civil War. Politics too are rather tricky subjects to get into and often end up in heated arguments as many locals are quite passionate about political parties they support.


Tourism is Still Evolving

Colombo without a doubt is in the throes of a tourism boom and the city is coping well rising to the challenge. There are plenty of international restaurants to dine at, designer boutiques to shop at and world class entertainment venues to enjoy a day or night out. The 5 star hotels in Colombo are well established offering classy entertainment and dining options together with central accommodation. Places like One Galle Face are centrally located within the city but if you decide to travel outside to the rural areas this modernisation does not extend. Other than for major cities such as Kandy you may not find a range of plush eateries, roads are narrow, infrastructure not well planned and globalization sparse. But all in all it is the rustic charm of these rural towns that beguile and entrance the discerning tourist.


Colombo is Not Cheap

Colombo is the central hub of Sri Lanka for all things modern; the residents are chic, savvy and look for the best and as the old adage goes 'good things don't come cheap'. Colombo can be quite expensive especially if you decide to browse the designer outlets and ritzy restaurants. Still you do get value for money on the occasion you decide to splurge and enjoy a night out in town.


Tours are Best Done with a Driver

Hiring your own car is the best mode of transport; public transport although available freely can be quite crowded and confusing if you are new in town; this being said a hired car may require a special driver's permit to drive, on the off shot you want to risk driving in Colombo. Choose to be chauffer driven and you will not regret it; streets can be quite chaotic with drivers paying scant regard to road rules. Mind you the police are quite vigilant and take offenders to task; still it is an acquired skill to navigate amongst the erratic driving patterns of Colombo vehicles.

  • A true believer that the pen is a mighty weapon, ventures into reaching the minds of every reader with the earnest hope of leaving an indelible stream of thought.

    A travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.

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