Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications

Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications

Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications
4.5
Historic SitesPoints of Interest & LandmarksArchitectural Buildings
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  • Anuradha
    New Delhi, India823 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Old world charm
    A beautiful place to dive in history ! I visited in January, still it was very hot during the afternoon, so hired a Tuk Tuk, however can be covered on foot. The architecture and ambience of the place makes it charming. Most of the Dutch and British structures are renovated and still in use as government offices, shops, institutes, cafes, hotels etc. There are two museums - National museum which was very small, and Archaeological Museum which was big. Most of the sections of museums were very hot without any fan or AC, despite pricy tickets( sp for foreigners). Sun set from the fort wall was mesmerising, a must do activity. Ensure you keep at least 6-7 hours for this place, you won’t regret !
    Visited January 2024
    Traveled with family
    Written January 9, 2024
  • romanshorner
    Munich, Germany1,191 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful Place with Colonial Architecture
    It is a beautiful place. Outside you have a nice view on the fortifications. When you walk through the wall system near the sea, you have a nice view over the sea. Inside the old town, you can enjoy jutst the city of colonial architecture. You find cafes, restaurants and a lot of souvenir shops there, where they offer all kind of souvenirs from Sri Lanka.
    Visited March 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written February 28, 2024
  • Marie-Laure C
    Paris, France15 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Sinhalese charm of the past centuries
    Half Portuguese, half Dutch colonial architectures as a framework through and around old Ceylon Galle just by the sea. Lots of lovely monuments and tiny restaurants along the quiet pedestrian avenues . And an impressive military fort above the beach
    Visited February 2024
    Traveled solo
    Written March 5, 2024
  • pamD4146VT
    Singapore, Singapore61 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Galle Fort
    Galle Forte is an interesting and beautiful place to visit. The walk along the ramparts which is just under 2km has beautiful views and really is a must do. Galle has a good selection of shops and good cafes. The streets are quite shady allowing a little respite from the sun.
    Visited March 2024
    Traveled as a couple
    Written March 13, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Prasanna M
Rowville, Australia235 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2019 • Family
A place which you should not miss in your itinerary. Galle Dutch Fort would be the main attraction. Then you have the museum where they have parts recovered from shipwrecks around Galle. This is near to Fort.
There are many Boutique hotels in Galle Fort. There is even a very old hotel inside the Fort. Then when you go passing Naval base and near to harbour entrance there is a road going to Closenburg Hotel. Very old and a small hotel in present terms. But in it's heyday this was the best hotel in Galle.
If you are taking the old Galle road from Colombo just before you reach Galle there is a great hotel called light house hotel.
If you are looking as to what you could do in Galle apart from things related to see you could visit places where they do wood carvings and also handicraft. They do some beautiful work with buffalo horns and also turtle shells.
If you want to buy an elephant (wooden) Galle will be the place. They do the wooden elephant and then decorate this with silver and gems just like the Elephants that carries the casket of relics in Sri Lankan religious events. These could cost easily around 1000.00 USD or more.
In earlier days they even had craftsmen who carved on ivory but now with present laws this is not seen much.
If you want to watch Whales contact Sri Lanka Navy base in Galle as they have a craft in which they take tourists. Have fun.
Written January 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

CheekyLondon
Southend-on-Sea, UK1,675 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
Our guide took us here and we had a pleasant walk all around on the fortress walls. Some great views and interesting things to look at on the way. We saw the old buildings including the church, the mosque, the lighthouse, the courtroom, the old post office. the old Dutch hospital (now shops and cafes) and much more. We also saw the girls school practising for their sport festival and the boys doing their military drill. We even saw the grooms preparing for the weddings! As this is a UNESCO site, there is much restoration and archaeological work going on, so be prepared to come off the wall sometimes. It's a shame that some of the areas on the wall have rubbish strewn around as this somewhat spoils the appearance. The locals like promenading along the wall at around sunset. A unique and interesting area. It takes about an hour at a gentle stroll.
Written February 2, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

SevenoaksSinjun
Sevenoaks, UK1,450 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2020
This is a lovely colonial town inside fortified walls on the sea front at Galle. Once you've found your way in via an opening in the walls, you'll notice that it is very much more peaceful than the main town. This 17th century town is made up of little lanes lined with shops, restaurants, and bars. You'll also find small hotels and guest houses. Further exploration will reveal attractive private residential properties, churches, the occasional museum and a market square. Be sure to walk up to both the lighthouse and the clock tower - both are worth a look and give good views out to sea and from the clock tower you'll also get a view towards to famous cricket ground. Really pleasant and a must see when in Galle.
Written May 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kai Wah
Malaysia3,578 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
We spent half a day here for 3-4 hours (from late morning till mid afternoon) as stopover visit while we were on our way to Negombo from Mirissa. This is a beautiful colonial town, founded in 16th century by the Portuguese, then the Dutch Colony in 18th century. It is now listed in UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are many interesting colonial style architecture, including some churches, Dutch hospital building, old shophouses and residential houses. We passed by a morning market where there were vendors selling paintings, artworks, handicrafts, etc. There are many cafes and restaurants within the old town for afternoon tea or lunch and dinner. Some highlights are Galle Fort, Galle Fort Light House, Clock Tower, St Mary Cathedral, All Saints Church, Dutch Hospital, etc. We wish we could spend a little more time here in this lovely town.
Written March 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mmamdouh
Doha, Qatar70 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Friends
Well, galle is a small city on the coast of srilanka i started my trip in it and stayed for 2 days but when i visited another cities in lanka i knew that I shouldn’t have stayed in galle for more than 1 day. As you can do all the staff and visit all the attractions in 1 day. But if you have plenty of time go for more you will enjoying relaxation on the beaches and the food their.
Written March 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Martin C
Petersfield, UK717 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
We had a lovely morning in Galle. we were advised by our Hotel to walk the walls early in the morning and that was very good advice as we avoided all the hawkers. Our tuc tuc driver dropped us at the base of the walls by the main gate and we wandered around in isolated bliss admiring the views.

Even at 9am it was very hot and humid and by 11 we were seeking solice with an iced tea in one of the numerous bars.

Galle is a lovely old city and they are still making repairs to the walls from the Tsunami damage - but it's good to see that it is getting back towards it former glory.
Written March 21, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Priya_T
Chennai (Madras), India692 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2019
The town of Galle has a strong influence of the Dutch from centuries ago. It is visible in the architecture of the church, the lighthouse and few more buildings lining these streets. It is a quaint town lined with narrow streets having many boutiques, air b&b, cafes, bars & restaurant. It is nice to take a leisurely stroll through these streets filled with local fare. the rampart is nice too. the original wall still remains. it is worth taking a walk to view the sunset and take pictures!
Written February 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

masterman2
Hong Kong, China276 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Personally I think it is one of the best attraction in Sri Lanka. Come early in the morning, walking along the fortress wall, from tower to tower, to admire the rocky bay with crystal clear waters. The lighthouse is photogenic but climbing it with ladders are not recommended. The old town is full of shops, chic restaurants, ice cream joints. and local spas. I tried an Ayurvedic Therapy in the Ceylon Spa, which is so relaxing, and I was sleeping throughout the 90 minutes treatment and I feel great afterward.
Written February 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Malcolm P
Chesterfield, UK234 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
If photography is your bag then this is a greta location with lots of old buildings with interesting colors and doors. The weals are also great to get views over the rest of the place and with work currently being carried out to repair and enhance them this will only get better once they have finished. If you want too buy some semi precious stones/jewelry this is also a good place but go yourself and not with a guide to get the best prices
Written January 8, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Anuradha
New Delhi, India823 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Family
A beautiful place to dive in history ! I visited in January, still it was very hot during the afternoon, so hired a Tuk Tuk, however can be covered on foot. The architecture and ambience of the place makes it charming. Most of the Dutch and British structures are renovated and still in use as government offices, shops, institutes, cafes, hotels etc. There are two museums - National museum which was very small, and Archaeological Museum which was big. Most of the sections of museums were very hot without any fan or AC, despite pricy tickets( sp for foreigners). Sun set from the fort wall was mesmerising, a must do activity. Ensure you keep at least 6-7 hours for this place, you won’t regret !
Written January 9, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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