Colombo is the commercial capital of Sri Lanka. Offering ever-more stylish eateries with great local food of your choice, convivial cafes, street markets, shopping malls and a lively nightlife, this cosmopolitan hub in the west coast is an excellent starting or finishing point to your Sri Lankan adventure.
Colombo is a port city and the area known as ‘Colombo Fort’ houses a number of landmarks including the clock tower which is older than the Big Ben, the President’s House, the old Parliament building which now serves as the Presidential Secretariat and the colonial Grand Oriental Hotel which is reckoned among the oldest hotels in South Asia. Portuguese colonizers first erected a fortified structure here in early 16th century, thus the name – Fort. However no sign of a fort can be traced today as it was demolished as early as latter part of the 19th century.
The Town Hall, which reminds of the Capitol Building of Washington DC, was built in 1928 and houses the office of Mayor and the Colombo Municipal Council now. The Independence Square (also known as the Independence Memorial Hall) was built in 1953 to commemorate the Independence from the British rule. It is erected on the location where the ceremony of handing down the power to the local government took place in 1948. The 19th century Gangarama Buddhist Temple is cluttered with museum artifacts and imposing majestic statues.