Dutch Hospital


Now fully restored and home to myriad upmarket boutiques and restaurants, this vast, colonnaded colonial landmark dates from the 18th century. Its size was necessary as both the voyage to Ceylon and life in the tropics proved very unhealthy to the Dutch, who died in droves from various diseases and the tropical heat. There are fabulous bay views from its upper balcony.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Galle attractions

1. Aurora Bastion

0.02 MILES

East-facing bastion, with fine views of Galle harbour. Look out for blocks of coral in its walls.

2. Historical Mansion

0.05 MILES

More of an antique store than a museum, this Fort townhouse (which dates back to the Dutch days) contains the private collection of a long-time local…

3. Court Square

0.08 MILES

This leafy, shady square is still a hub of legal activity and has several lawyers' chambers.

4. Lighthouse Beach

0.11 MILES

A slim swathe of sand right on the east side of the Fort. However it's not that great for a dip as there are rocks offshore and the beach is often…

5. Old Gate

0.13 MILES

A beautifully carved British coat of arms tops the entrance to the Old Gate on the outer side. Inside, the letters VOC, standing for Verenigde…

6. National Maritime Museum

0.14 MILES

Nestled in the old walls, this small museum is worth a quick look for its skeleton of a Bryde's whale and a very useful model that explains how tsunamis…

7. Point Utrecht Bastion

0.15 MILES

The eastern section of Galle's wall ends at the Point Utrecht Bastion, close to the powder magazine, which bears a Dutch inscription from 1782. Today this…

8. Lighthouse

0.15 MILES

Guarding against the rocks at the southern end of the Galle promontory, this elegant 27m working lighthouse dates from 1939, though there's been a…