Image: Luxe Asia
You can discover magical Galle on a one day trip from Colombo, getting an unforgettable experience, understanding of local life, sampling delicious Southern delicacies and visiting attractions such as Rumassala, Jungle Beach, Galle Fort, and the Turtle Hatchery along the way. A short day trip will most certainly turn out to be an excellent choice.
You can reach Galle either by your own private transport, by bus or by train.
You can discover the unique beauty of Maduganga River on a boat trip while traveling to Galle. An unspoiled lagoon, the Maduganga is spreading over 900 hectares of which 770 hectares is covered with water and inhabited by 64 islands. The boat ride is a wonderful way to take a closer look at this complex wetland ecosystem. It is a World Heritage Site protected by the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, being one of the last wetlands in Sri Lanka to contain a pristine mangrove forest.
You can visit the bustling Galle market and see the fishermen sell their daily catch by the road side before exploring Galle Fort.
The Fort has been nicely restored and has lovely churches, a mosque and a lighthouse. The Dutch influence can be seen everywhere. The sea beats down the walls on three sides of the fort and adds much allure to the enchanting environment. You can even visit a private museum or two inside the Fort where there are so many interesting artefacts and ancient relics from the Dutch, British and Portuguese.
Then you can walk towards the lighthouse. The walk down the rampart street is terrific. There are many hotels and picturesque inns. Shops inside the fort are unique although expensive. There is an interesting maritime museum also there.
Late afternoon on your way back you can visit a Turtle Hatchery, where these almost-extinct turtles are breed and cared for in Kosgoda. Visitors can see the new born turtles and even be a part of the process of releasing them in the sea.
Galle is located approximately 130km away from Colombo. A one-day trip to Galle is extremely feasible and it is possible to cover much of its landmarks. You can chose to stay at a hotel in Colombo and travel to Galle and return, or else travel to Galle and spend the night in Galle itself.