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Updated by Helix Digi Labs on Sep 16, 2020
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10 Things to do in Colombo

Colombo may not be a popular tourist spot compared to the numerous other cities in the beautiful island of Sri Lanka but it does still have a lot to offer. Colombo is the commercial capital and the most developed city of this nation, so if you are in Sri Lanka, staying a couple of days in Colombo to experience the culture and vibe of the area should be high up on your to-do list. Apart from the luxury and world-renowned Colombo city hotels, Colombo also has many other places that go by unnoticed. To make things easier for you, we have compiled a list of 10 things you can and should do in Colombo.

1

Hangout with friends at & Co Pub

Hangout with friends at & Co Pub

& Co Pub is a cozy pub in the heart of Colombo with a chic Scottish aesthetic and the perfect ambience. This is the ideal spot for you and your friends if you are looking to unwind from a long day or beat the Colombo heat. With great offers on drinks served with delicious and generous portions of food, &Co Pub guarantees you a high quality experience. The live music by local artists, amazing customer service and the friendly vibe makes this pub one of the top places to eat at in Colombo.

2

Isso wade at Nana’s in Galle face

Isso wade at Nana’s in Galle face

All these terms might seem quite unfamiliar to you, but trust us this is one of the best snacks Sri Lanka has to offer. A wade is a fried snack that is popular in the Indian subcontinent and Sri Lanka has put its own unique twist to this traditional food by adding a prawn (isso is the Sinhalese term) on it. This delicious snack is loved by all and is available at the popular ‘Nana’s restaurant’ at Galle Face Green.
(Image courtesy: harshi_gunathilake | Instagram)

3

Cheese Kottu at Pilawoos

Cheese Kottu at Pilawoos

‘Kottu’ is a dish unique to Sri Lanka and is made from roti, vegetables and add-ons such as different types of meat or cheese. This dish is a popular and well-loved Sri Lankan street food, and trying it at Pilawoos is high on the list. There are many different variations of Kottu that you can try from various places in Colombo, usually available in any place that serves Sri Lankan dishes, but we’d highly recommend starting with the cheese kottu at Pilawoos.
(Image courtesy: 161rala_kesbewe | Instagram)

4

Cycling at Viharamahadevi Park

The hustle and bustle of Colombo might get overwhelming, but the Viharamahadevi Park will definitely do the trick. This park which includes a mini zoo, a fountain and a small canteen also has a very good cycling track that you should definitely take advantage of. You can rent a bike at a very low price on an hourly basis and enjoy cycling either for exercise or for leisure on this traffic free path.

5

Old Dutch Hospital

Old Dutch Hospital

The Old Dutch Hospital is one of the oldest buildings in the Colombo Fort area and as the name suggests, you guessed it, dates back to the colonial Dutch era which is early 1600. Currently this place has been restored and is home to many restaurants, clubs and shops. So if you are looking for a night out, a good lunch or even a leisurely stroll, this area is perfect for it all.
(Image courtesy: travelers_ka_adda | Instagram)

6

A walk in Independence Square

A walk in Independence Square

The Independence Square commemorates the Independence Sri Lanka received from the British in 1948. This massive and impressive stone building is inspired by the architecture of the Royal Audience Hall in Kandy which is where the convention making Sri Lanka British was signed. This place surrounded by a lush green and some peace and quiet is ideal for a leisurely stroll. It also hosts a memorial museum which gives insight into the history of this nation.
(Image courtesy: some_where_around | Instagram)

7

Window shopping at the malls

There are many impressive malls around Colombo. Some honorable mentions are Colombo City Center and One Galle Face. These malls house many different shops and outlets ranging from a variety of products and styles. Walking around the malls, window shopping and maybe grabbing a bite at the food court will definitely expose you to more of Sri Lanka. Who knows, maybe you’d even find some items that you really like.

8

Watch the sunset near Beira lake

Watch the sunset near Beira lake

The Beira Lake is situated in the center of the city of Colombo. The lake is surrounded by many large businesses and hotels and the view provides an impressive skyline of Colombo. Watching the sun set behind this skyline is a mesmerizing picturesque view. Experiencing this magnificent view will definitely lead to some reminiscing because that is just what nature does isn’t it?
(Image courtesy: strive.life | Instagram)

9

Eat from food trucks

Eat from food trucks

Along the Marine Drive, which is the road that lines the ocean, there are many food trucks parked in Bambalapitiya. Offering food ranging from burgers to sweet and savory crepes, the street food is definitely of good quality. What makes this experience better is that you can take your food to the beach and sit on the rocks enjoying the sound of the crashing waves while you eat. But make sure you are careful and alert while you cross the train tracks.
(Image courtesy: lankaspiceboy | Instagram)

10

Tuk Tuk tour

Tuk Tuk tour

One of the easiest, cheapest and definitely most unique modes of transport in South Asia is Tuk Tuks. Also known as Trishaws or Three-wheelers, a ride in this is a definite must when visiting Sri Lanka. Additionally a new tour company offers a tour of Colombo in a Tuk Tuk. As a Tuk Tuk is open on either side, making it the perfect vehicle for a tour, it allows you to kill two birds with one stone.
(Image credits: tuktuksafari | Instagram)