Colombo is the commercial capital of Sri Lanka and lies alongside the present administrative capital, Sri Jayawardenepura, Kotte. Colombo’s port was influential as early as the 5th century when ships from Rome, Arabia, and China traded with Sinhalese kings for food supplies, spices and jewels. Colombo’s destiny changed over the centuries as many nations fought for dominance over the island’s valuable treasures including Arab settlers in the 8th century, followed by the Portuguese, the Dutch and, finally, the British who captured Colombo in 1796. 

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This era of western domination ended peacefully with independence in 1948 and today’s two million population in the city represents a mix of cultures. Sinhalese, Moors, Tamils, Burghers (Dutch descendents), Chinese, and Malay populations all contribute towards the colourful fabric of Colombo society.

Don't Miss

  • Sipping sunset cocktails at Galle Face hotel
  • Exploring Pettah bazaar
  • The city’s temples and Kovils
  • The National Museum
  • The Sunday art fairs down Green Path
  • The latest productions at Lionel Wendt theatre
  • Golf at Royal Colombo
  • Birding in Talangama’s wetlands

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