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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for Top 05 Attractions in Negombo – Quintessential Tourist Resort
Joanna James Joanna James
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Top 05 Attractions in Negombo – Quintessential Tourist Resort

Negombo is the closest beach resort town to the international airport. The place is a sleepy fisher village and bustling town all rolled into one. There you can enjoy the sun, sand and surf as well as, colonial history. Read on for the best attractions.


Visit the Local Fish Market

Negombo is famous for its fisher community and each day one can observe fishermen sailing out to sea in traditional wooden canoes, called oruwas. These crafts all float into the huge Negombo Lagoon at the end of the day and are a fine sight to observe. Fish auctions take place on the beach while the fish market close to the old Dutch fort is a rather smelly and exciting place. The market is a good place to observe local lifestyles. The Negombo Lagoon too is well-known for its bounty of prawns, crabs and lobster, and heading over to the market very early in the morning will ensure you get the best of the catch. You can enjoy the splendour of the lagoon by opting for hotels located along its banks, like Amagi Aria.


Chill on Negombo Beach

The large expanse of sandy beach makes Negombo popular as a beach resort. Stretching from the northern edge of the town, the beach is framed by coconut palms, offering one a relaxed ambience to savour. Easy to reach from well-located Negombo accommodation options, the beach is a good place to spend a day, swimming and relaxing under a tropical sky.


Tour Hamilton Canal

The Dutch greatly influenced Negombo, canals were a prominent feature and used to transport the cinnamon logs all the way to ports in Colombo and the north. The Hamilton canal was built to extend 120kms to Colombo in the south and Puttalam in the north. The best way to tour this canal is to hire a bicycle either from your Negombo hotel or a local rental agent. Cycling along the banks of the canal will treat you to sights of lush foliage, some wildlife like seabirds and monitor lizards, as well as a chance to pass by quaint fisher villages.


Explore the Dutch Fort

Located near the mouth of the lagoon on the seafront are ruins of an old Dutch fort. The gateway which still stands bears the inscription 1678. Close by is a lovely green called the Esplanade where the occasional impromptu cricket match takes place. The fort is now owned by the prisons, as such only, the exterior can be observed, besides, no tourist has shown that much enthusiasm to get into the fort cum prison.


St Mary's Church

A nickname Negombo has earned is that of 'Little Rome', which is in lieu of the place being home to a vast number of Catholic churches and a huge Catholic population. Influence of the Dutch, the best of these churches is St Mary's which is also the largest. The church located in town has faded pink walls and period furniture inside. The most prominent feature is the beautifully painted ceiling.

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