Colombo is a massive city, which sprawls along the west coast of Sri Lanka. Most people will visit Colombo on their trip to Sri Lanka, as it is the main arrival hub for visitors arriving into the country. Colombo is busy, hot, humid, and somewhat polluted, and can be a bit overwhelming when first arriving, however there is definitely some charm (and good people-watching). The main airport is about an hours drive from the city centre (with traffic) and about thirty minutes without traffic, so if you are arriving late, try finding a Colombo hostel near the airport.
The National Museum of Colombo shouldn't be missed. It is the largest museum in Colombo and offers a good introduction into the history and culture of the country. The Galle Face Green Promenade is also the perfect place to watch the sunset in the evening. The promenade stretches about thirteen acres, and on the weekend is filled with market stalls, food vendors, and day trippers -- definitely a good stop to try some local food and for some people watching. Another highlight is a visit to the Turtle Conservation Villa, which is a not-for-profit turtle conservation centre/group located just outside the city -- highly recommended!
Accommodation varies, and there is something for every traveler and budget. From fancy resorts and luxury hotels, to guesthouses and bed and breakfasts to Colombo hostels and budget hotels. Guesthouses and hostels in Colombo are the best places to stay if you want to get a feel for the country and the culture. Most hostels in Colombo are like guesthouses, only they also offer dorm rooms. Hostels are generally quite small (not many rooms) and offer a very friendly, Sri Lankan welcome. Hostes and guesthouses, as well as most of accommodation options, include free Wi-Fi and complimentary breakfast. Some accommodation options can also arrange airport transfers, which is definitely a bonus if you're arriving on a late or very early flight. Guesthouses usually offer a dinner option, so is a great opportunity to try some local, homemade Sri Lankan food.
Hi, I'm Kelly Sheldrick,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Colombo hostels. Welcome.