Galle is a coastal city 130 kilometres south of Colombo. There are two main areas to visit in Galle: the Galle Fort and Unawatuna. No visit to the south is complete without seeing both of these areas. A perfect combination of beach and culture, Galle has it all. Keep reading to discover the top 5 things to see and do in Galle, Sri Lanka.
* Take a walk on the ramparts
Galle is a walled city surrounded by thick ramparts. These were built by the Dutch merchants that controlled the city in the 17th century. The ramparts are so thick that you can walk along them – start at one end and finish at the other. Look towards the ocean, see the old prison between the ramparts and the waves, check out the lighthouse and the clock tower and watch the schoolboys during cricket practice.
* Check out the Dutch architecture
When the Dutch ran the East India Company out of Galle Fort, they left behind plenty of constructions. The ramparts themselves are a pretty impressive architectural construction, but there are others worth seeing. The Maritime Archaeology Museum in a building inside the ramparts was once the Dutch Warehouse. Another great example of Dutch architecture is the Groote Kerk and the Amangalla hotel.
* Go shopping
Inside the Galle Fort is where you can walk along the little streets and do some shopping. In between the boutique hotels and old houses, there are plenty of little shops and boutiques where you can buy plenty of local souvenirs and goods. The most notable of goods that can be found in the little Galle Fort shops are Sri Lankan gems and jewellery. You can also find handwoven sarongs and home linen.
* Have kottu roti at Galle Things Roti
You’re probably going to get hungry from all the walking and shopping, so best to have some kottu roti for lunch. Kottu roti is a Sri Lankan favourite and the best one available in the Galle Fort is from a cute little eatery called Galle Things Roti. Kottu roti is a dish made with bits of roti, vegetables, eggs chicken and cheese if you want.
* Have afternoon tea at Amangalla
Since Sri Lanka was a British colony for a while, some British customs are still in play among the people here. Afternoon tea is one of them. The Amangalla Hotel is one of the Dutch buildings left in the Galle Fort and in the eighties, it was used in a music video by Duran Duran. The afternoon tea at the Amangalla Hotel is top notch and definitely worth a try.