Colombo, Sri Lanka’s commercial capital is a city that is quite unique in nature. From the bustling markets like Pettah to the beautiful gardens of Viharamahadevi and Independence Square; high-end shopping precincts like The Dutch Hospital and historical monuments that are well worth a visit, the city has much to offer. In regard to the latter, there is one that stands tall and proud at the edge of the beach, acting as a beacon of light to vessels on the sea. It is none other than the Colombo Lighthouse.
Also known as the Colombo Galbokka Lighthouse (කොලඹ ගල්බොක්ක ප්රදීපාගාරය), the lighthouse dates as far back as 1952 when it was built to replace the Old Colombo Lighthouse. The lighthouse was declared open by the honourable Rt Hon D.S. Senanayake, Sri Lanka’s very first prime minister. The site is managed and maintained by the Sri Lanka Ports Authority. During the time of the war that island experienced for three decades, it was a restricted area. Today, it is one of the popular attractions among tourists who visit Colombo.
The Colombo Lighthouse is located south of the port, along with Marine Drive in Colombo Fort. This is an area that is well frequented by tourists, so you would have no trouble of finding it out. There’s many a hotel in Colombo, Sri Lanka such as the Cinnamon Grand Colombo situated in close proximity to the site, so if you’re staying in one of these you can ask the concierge to give you directions. Some hotels will even arrange a tuk tuk ride to take you there.
The lighthouse stands at an impressive 9 feet, upon a stone base that is carved with such beautiful designs. There are four intricately-carved stone lions guarding the entrance of the lighthouse. At the base of the monument, you will find a naval gun battery which is fired as a salutation on the country’s National Day falling on the 4th of February.
When you visit the lighthouse, make sure it is during the evening as the sunset from here is truly spectacular!
Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+