On Sri Lanka’s south coast, you will come across a stunning ancient fort that has stood the test of time and still protects the city of Galle; here’s more on the captivating Galle Fort.
Planning your Visit
From the commercial capital, Colombo, you can take a bus on the Southern Expressway (approx. 75 minutes) or the coastal Galle Road (approx. 3 hours) or train from the Colombo Fort Station (approx. 2 hours). Consider staying at nearby Unawatuna; hotels along the shore such as Araliya Beach Resort & Spa and are just a short drive from Galle.
A Bit of History
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Galle Fort or Dutch Fort, was initially constructed by the Portuguese in the 16th century. However, it was after the Dutch took over in the 17th century that the fort was added to and fortified to reach the height of its development including its distinctive architecture and features.
What to Expect
Inside the fort are charming cobbled streets that will take you back in time; you will come across Dutch cottages and colonial houses with typical verandas and huge warehouses. Amongst the attractions to visit are the 18th century Dutch Reformed Church, Galle Lighthouse and the Old Gate with its British coat of arms.
Other Things to Do
Amongst the best things to do in Galle is to walk along the fort’s ramparts which overlook the sea especially in the evening, to catch a magical sunset. You can also visit the Galle National Museum housed in the city’s oldest Dutch building, the Maritime Museum and the Sri Sudharmalaya Buddhist Temple nearby.