It seems that all stories both start and end in Colombo, it is inevitable. This 24 hour guide to Colombo, Sri Lanka will give you a taste of what you can do when you land or leave. As the major airport for getting into Sri Lanka, Colombo tends to be a layover city, with minimum time spent. Those who stay a bit longer find gems in this major city — even between the mess of tuk tuks and the never ending traffic. It’s filled with it all — incredible restaurants, cafes, and beautiful architecture. Searching out this amidst the chaos of the city is rewarding, and definitely gives Colombo a great starting point for a journey in Sri Lanka.
Come here to be surprised by a city that often gets overlooked. Merge through the traffic, look past the chaos, and be pleasantly surprised by Colombo.
The 24 Hour Guide to Colombo, Sri Lanka
What to Know Before Visiting Colombo, Sri Lanka.
- Getting around is easy, with plenty of tuk tuks. (Cash only and always negotiate price before getting in).
- Cash is best for most restaurants though bigger hotels accept card.
- It is a more conservative city, so I would suggest being a bit more covered up then say when you’re at the beach.
Where to Stay in Colombo, Sri Lanka
- Moss B&B: We booked this small hotel that ended up being perfect. It was uber cheap in comparison to the other hotels, and the rooms were clean and they had a good breakfast.
- The Kingsbury: This is a luxury option for those looking to experience one of the most historic hotels in Sri Lanka. It’s location is also footsteps from the action.
- More hotels in Colombo here.
Where to Eat in Colombo, Sri Lanka
- The Gallery Cafe: A beautiful space setting in an inner courtyard where the food is as good as it looks. I came here twice and it was incredible.
- Upali’s by Nawaloka: A good choice for Sri Lankan food.
- Nihonbashi: Who would of thought there would be good sushi in Colombo, this gem of a restaurant lands itself on San Pellegrino’s Asias Best 50 list and it’s delicious. Order the grilled rice!
- Flamingo House: A lively restaurant and bar, for a good evening out.
What to Do in Colombo, Sri Lanka
- Visit the beautiful Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara temple.
- Take a city tour by tuk tuk to go explore the fort.
- See the incredible Red Masjid mosque.
- Explore the National Museum of Sri Lanka.
- Eat your way through Pettah Market.