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Updated by Joanna James on Mar 16, 2024
Headline for Top Things to Know Before Travelling to Negombo – A West Coast Wonder
Joanna James Joanna James
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Top Things to Know Before Travelling to Negombo – A West Coast Wonder

With an idyllic location along Sri Lanka's west coast, Negombo offers the perfect getaway by the beach where you can enjoy some cultural experiences too. Of course, it always helps to know more about a destination before a visit and here are some interesting things about this city.


It's Centrally Located on the West Coast

As mentioned, Negombo lies along the west coast and is situated in quite a convenient and strategic location. The island's Bandaranaike International Airport is only about a 15-minute drive away, meaning you can enjoy the sun, sand and surf soon after you arrive! This city is only around 37 km from the commercial capital, Colombo, and within easy reach of areas like Wattala, making it an ideal holiday destination. Apart from driving or hiring a vehicle with a driver, you can also access this coastal hotspot by way of public busses or trains making it easy to reach too.


Water Sports on Offer

While the golden sandy beach of Negombo is a great place to soak up the sun, this coastal city also offers thrilling water sports in Sri Lanka be it out at sea or in the lagoon. One of the most popular activities is kitesurfing and the excellent wind conditions provide plenty of speed-filled excitement on the water. For more adrenaline-pumping action there is jet skiing, while families can look to enjoy snorkelling and fun banana boat rides. Catamaran sailing is another engaging water sport to try along with kayaking and scuba diving at more than 20 sites off the coast.


There is Much to Explore

Be you staying in Negombo or at a hotel in Wattala or Colombo within easy reach of the city, planning a tour is not hard to do and will offer many insightful discoveries. This part of the island is known as "Little Rome" due to the many Roman Catholic churches here including those that date back to Portuguese colonial times; a key site amongst these churches is the Neoclassical-style St. Mary's Church. One of the most popular attractions in Negombo, the Dutch Canal is an ideal place to enjoy a boat cruise, while other top spots include the Angurukaramulla Temple and the Main Fish Market.


It Has a Rich Natural Heritage

Apart from its coastal beauty, Negombo is also blessed with natural wonders of which, a key site is the Muthurajawela Marsh. An ideal place to explore on excursions from properties such as Pegasus Reef Hotel, this marsh forms an invaluable part of a wetland eco-system that thrives with flora and fauna. Those interested in birdwatching in Sri Lanka have much to enjoy here too including the chance to spot kingfishers, purple herons, black bitterns and more.


Popular Amongst Foodies

Negombo has also gained quite a reputation amongst local and foreign foodies since the city has an eclectic array of dining options be it offering local or international favourites. As you would expect, seafood is very popular here including fish, lobster, shrimp or crab caught out at sea or in the nearby lagoon. Apart from the restaurants in Negombo, one can also enjoy beach dining which provides a truly magical experience.