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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for 5 Historical Spots to Visit in Negombo – The perfect starting or ending point
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Joanna James Joanna James
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5 Historical Spots to Visit in Negombo – The perfect starting or ending point

Whether you've just landed in Sri Lanka or headed back home, Negombo is the ideal place to rest and do some casual sight-seeing. Here are 5 historical places you can visit in Negombo.

1

Hamilton Canal

Negombo is the best place to understand how much the Dutch love canals. Built in the middle of a Lagoon, the Hamilton canals which start in Negombo stretch out to Puttalam from the North and Colombo from the South, spanning an area of 120 kilometres in total. Visitors have the option of hiring a local tour guide (all tour guides speak excellent English) and getting an informative tour of the rivers or the canal or alternatively renting bicycles and ride them along the side path of the canal.

2

Negombo Fort

The Negombo Fort has had several owners over the years because of its strategic value – Good quality cinnamon. Cinnamon trading in Negombo has since diminished. While it was built by the Portuguese it was captured by the Dutch in 1640 but would be reclaimed by the Portuguese by the end of that year. The Dutch then reclaimed the Fort in 1644 and continued to occupy the port for quite some time. By the start of 1796, the Fort was occupied by the British who tore down the Fort to construct a prison using the Bricks from the Fort.

3

St Mary's and St Anne's Church

Catholicism was brought to Negombo during the 16th century by the Portuguese. It is home to a large number of Catholics and Portuguese descendants and the town is often referred to as "Little Rome". Located at the centre of the Negombo town, the construction of St Mary's church which began in 1874 was completed only in 1922. The church, which is pink in colour is one of the churches which depicts how Catholicism was integrated into to the region. Surrounded by palm tree's St Anne's is a beautiful and serene church that showcases a variety of paintings that will leave you in awe.

4

Negombo Fishmarket

The beautiful beaches of Negombo are home to several of the finest beach hotels in Sri Lanka. In addition to engaging in beach sports and enjoying some of the best cuisine and hospitality offered by hotels similar to Amagi Hotels, the Negombo beach is home to 2 famous fish markets. The main fish market is located on the Negombo the beach and if you can get up early enough you can watch the fisherman bring in their hard work on to shore. The second fish market is located in the Negombo lagoon is where most of the large fishing vessels come ashore. Once the fish have been unloaded the fisherman sell their catch by trying to outbid their competitors' prices.

5

Angurukaramulla Temple

Angurukaramulla Temple is one of the few places of worship for Buddhist devotee's in Negombo; a town predominately occupied by Catholics. The Buddha statue at the entrance of the temple is more than 6 meters tall and you enter the temple by going through the mouth of a dragon. The interior of the temple is lined with wall paintings, sculptures and ceiling paintings showcasing Buddha's path to enlightenment and tales of old kings from the Mahavamsa – a poem written in ancient Pali that cover the time period of the beginnings of Sri Lanka till the period of Mahasena of Anuradhapura.