Galle Face Green with World Trade Centre in background.

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Galle Face Green

Top choice in Colombo

This long open space traditionally faced a narrow beach and the sea. It was originally cleared by the Dutch to give the cannons of Fort a clear line of fire. Today its broad expanses and seaside promenade are a popular rendezvous spot; on most days it’s dotted with kite flyers, bubble blowers, families and canoodling couples, and (especially Sunday evening) food vendors at the southern end along the surf offer up all manner of deep-fried and briny snacks.

Try a fresh isso wade, a shrimp fritter with the shrimp still whole and cooked right in, then wash it all down with a fresh lime juice at vendors that include the very popular original (note the many copycats) Nana's.

Kids jump from the small pier into the rather dubious waters below. Sunsets here are enjoyed by one and all.

Hotels near Galle Face Green

Colombo boasts accommodation suited to every budget, and a number of great options can be found within walking distance of Galle Face Green. Good options include Cinnamon Grand Hotel (a 13-minute walk away) for those looking for luxury, Miracle City Inn (formerly Colombo City Hostel) for those on a budget (a 25-minute walk away) and Lake Lodge (a 25-minute walk away) for those somewhere in the middle.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Colombo attractions

1. Colombo Club

0.14 MILES

The remaining structures of the 1871 Colombo Club face the green from the grounds of Taj Samudra hotel; the club’s rooms are still used for functions.

2. Pier

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A small pier that's a popular place for kids to dive into the ocean.

3. Cinnamon Life

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Sri Lanka's Cinnamon Group is behind this vast mixed-use development that will overwhelm the west side of Slave Island. Its eye-catching modern design…

4. Colonial Storefronts

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A row of colonial storefronts on Union Pl that aren't looking particularly healthy, what with the trees growing out their facades.

5. St Andrew's Church

0.36 MILES

As compact as a fresh haggis, this 1834 granite church is an island of calm back from Galle Rd. Inside the cool interior, the walls are lined with fulsome…

6. Pelican Perches

0.59 MILES

Huge pelicans perch on light poles and otherwise lounge about at this roundabout. Watch where you walk.

7. Temple Trees

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The official prime minister's house has also been the residence for several recent presidents, including Mahinda Rajapaksa. It's heavily protected.

8. World Trade Center

0.65 MILES

Opened in 1996, this was one of the first modern office towers in Colombo.