Travel Guide to Colombo

Indian Embassy in Colombo

Indian Embassy in Colombo is located at

36-38, A2, Colombo 00300, Sri Lanka

Phone: +94 112 327 587

Visa Process for Indian Visitors to Colombo

  • Original passport
  • Copy of the first and the last page of the passport
  • Confirmed air tickets
  • Day-to-day itinerary

Time required: 1-2 working days

About Colombo

Colombo is the business capital and the largest city of Sri Lanka. This metropolitan city has a population of 5.6 million. This is the commercial centre of the country and one of the major tourist destinations. The geography of this city is a mixture of both water and land. The city comprises of both lakes and concrete structures. Beira Lake located in the heart of the city is one of the largest lakes in the city and stands as a landmark for the city. The city is a multi-cultural city which is home to people from various religions. As you visit this city, you will get to see there are many of things to do in Colombo .

Places to Visit in Colombo

Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple- This temple serves as one of the most important and famous tourist destinations in Colombo. The architecture of the temple illustrates a mixture of Thai, Indian, Chinese and Sri Lankan style architecture. This temple contains many imposing structures and is situated very close to the famous Beira Lake. The main features of the temple include the Cetiya, the Bodhitree, the Vihara Mandiraya, the assembly hall for monks, and the Relic Chamber. The major tourist attraction of this temple is the structure of Simamalaka shrine. At present, this temple serves as a centre for learning apart from a place for worship.

Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara- This famous Buddhist temple located seven miles from Colombo serves as a major tourist spot. It is a common belief among the Buddhist that this temple was hallowed during the final visit of Lord Buddha to Sri Lanka in 500 BCE. The stupa present in this temple is the original gem studded stone that was used by Lord Buddha during his preaching. This temple contains a collection of beautiful images of Lord Buddha depicting important phase of His life. An 18-foot-tall statue of Lord Buddha has been erected in this temple which also serves as an attraction.

Galle Face Green- This is an ocean park spread across an area of 12-acres that stretches along the coasts of Colombo. This park was initially used for horse racing and as a golf course. But at present, it is used for other sports like cricket, tennis, polo and football. It is a well maintained beautiful area and attracts sports lovers. You will just fall in love with this place once you visit this area during your trip to Colombo.

Viharamahadevi Park- Also known as Victoria Park, this park is a public park located in the city of Colombo. It is also the oldest and one of the largest parks in the city. The park is beautifully decorated with a Buddha statue placed in the middle of the park. Other attractions of the park include a water fountain, a mini zoo and a children’s playground. This can be a good place to visit during your stay in Colombo.

National Museum of Colombo-This famous and special museum is among the two most popular museums in Sri Lanka and sometimes also referred as Sri Lankan National Museum. This is also the biggest museums of Sri Lanka. Established on January 1, 1877, the National Museum was developed by the British Governor of Sri Lanka. This museum displays the cultural heritage of the country through different art forms. This museum holds some of the ancient paintings by Sri Lankan painters.

National Zoological Garden of Sri Lanka- Founded in 1936, this famous zoological garden is located in the heart of Colombo city. Its spacious areas are home to several types of animals and birds. This zoo serves as a protectionary area for different animals and helps in conserving endangered species. The dense green forest adds to the beautiful landscape of the zoo. This garden also hosts different medicinal plants which act as a cure for many diseases. This garden also organises different animal shows which are popular with tourists. Animal shows include an Elephant show where elephants perform different music and beats. It also includes sea lion performance where the sea lions are fed by their keepers. The animal shows are a major attraction of this place. Hence if you are visiting this garden make sure you watch at least one of the animal shows.

Colombo’s points of interest vary throughout the city with so many places to visit. Some of the other spots that you may visit during your stay at Colombo includes Beira Lake, Dutch Museum, Lucia’s Cathedral Church, Bally’s Casino, Mount Lavina Beach and many more.

How to Reach Colombo

By Plane

Colombo International Airport is also known as Bandaranaike International Airport is the major airport for reaching Colombo via flight. This airport is connected to all major airports of other cities and countries. Taxi service connects the airport to the rest of the city.

By Train

Colombo Fort Railway Station is the major rail station that connects the city to other important places. There is also taxi service available that helps to traverse the city.

By Road

Katunayake Expressway is the major road that leads to Colombo and connects it to other famous and important places. This serves as the entry point to the city of Colombo. If you think of driving your way to Colombo, then you can easily use this road.

Travelling within Colombo

If you are visiting Colombo, then you should definitely know how to travel within the city. One of the cheapest forms of travelling within the city is by bus. The air-conditioned public buses are available from all the important and famous tourist destinations. You may record the name of the bus station near to the tourist hub that you are visiting, and it will be easier for you. Taxi service is also available in the city, and you can hire a taxi for a day or two at a particular rate for travelling within the city.

Best Time to Visit

Colombo is a year-round tourist destination. But if you do not want to face the heavy monsoons of Colombo then you may avoid the months of June to September as Colombo experiences maximum downpour during this time. December to March can be the best time to visit this city as it is full of tourist and hence all the special events and shows are put up at famous places in Colombo at this time. Colombo experiences the best weather during March and April. The tourist places in Colombo looks the best during this time of the year.

Top Delicacies

Once you visit Colombo, you should not miss the extravagant Sri Lankan food which includes fish curry and mixed rice, sweet and sour fish curry, chilli fish curry, vegetarian kottu, young jackfruit curry, Sri Lankan Dhal Curry to name a few.

Indian Restaurants in Colombo

  • Graze Kitchenat Number 2 Sir Chittampalam A Gardiner Mawatha | Hilton Colombo, Colombo 00200, Sri Lanka. Serves Indian, Chinese, and Japanese cuisine. Call restaurant at +94 11 2 492492
  • Chutneys At Cinnamon Grandat 77 Galle Road, Colombo 00300, Sri Lanka. Serves Indian and Asian cuisine. Call the restaurant at +94 11 2 497372
  • The Mango Treeat No. 82, Dharmapala Mawatha, Colombo, Sri Lanka. Serves Indian and Asian cuisine. Call the restaurant at +94 11 7 620620

Shopping List Essentials

Colombo being the commercial capital of the country hosts several shopping expeditions. Laksala, the handicraft emporium is one of the most visited shopping complexes. This place sells some of the beautiful handmade items that are exclusively made by Sri Lankan artisans. Majestic City is another famous shopping hub for tourists.

Healthcare Centres

You must take a note on the private and public hospitals and clinics in Colombo while your stay. Ceylinco Healthcare Centre, Revival Physical Medicine Centre, Blue Cross Medical Centre, Asiri Central Hospital are some of the common places for healthcare issues. Besides it will be always a best choice to have travel insuranceduring your trip. This will take care of all your medical expenses and emergencies.

Emergency Contact Numbers

  • Police Emergency Hotline: 118 / 119
  • Ambulance / Fire & rescue: 110
  • Accident Service-General Hospital-Colombo: 011-2691111
  • Tourist Police: 011-2421052

Currency

Sri Lanka uses Rupee as their currency which is divided into 1oo cents.

Local Do’s & Don’ts

Do’s

  • Carry insect repellent
  • Leave your valuables in the hotel safe

Don’ts

  • Don't drink the tap water
  • Don’t take a selfie with Buddha
  • Don’t wear shorts in public

Basis of local communication

The local language of Sri Lanka is Sinhalese and Tamil. But due to the increase in tourists the local people have started communicating in English and Hindi. But it is essential to learn a little bit of local language while visiting any place. So here is a guide to some of the common words spoken in the Sinhalese language

English Sinhalese
Good Morning Subha udǣsanak
My Name is Magē nama
Where is koheda
Yes ov
No næta
Please - karuṇākara
Sorry samāvanna
How much is this meya kīya da

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What is a deductible?

“Deductible”means a cost-sharing requirement under this policy, that provides that the insurer will not be liable for a specified rupee amount or percentage of claim amount or number of days or number of hours, as specified in the policy schedule and which will apply before any benefits are payable by the insurer. A deductible does not reduce the sum insured and is applicable per event, upto the specified limits mentioned.

What Is Not Covered Under the Travel Insurance Plan?

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What Is Covered Under Travel Insurance?

Loss of passport and documents:

Reimbursement of actual expenses incurred in connection with obtaining a duplicate or fresh passport or reasonable cost of replacing/obtaining the stolen documents/ tickets if the passport belonging to the Insured / Insured Person be lost

Home Fire Insurance Contents & Home Burglary Insurance (contents):

Cover against any loss or damage of the Contents at Home of the Insured in India caused by Fire and Allied perils or through burglary and/or housebreaking while the Insured is on a trip abroad.

Hijack Distress Allowance

Payment of distress allowance in case of hijack of a common carrier for more than certain number of hours whilst on the trip. You can easily avail the allowance by filing a claim online through Travel Insurance cover online process.

Medical Expensesinclusive of Repartration  and Emergency Medical Evacuation

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Legal Expenses

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Personal Accident

Payment of compensation if the Insured sustains accidental bodily injury during a trip resulting in death or Permanent Total Disablement or Permanent Partial Disablement within 12 months of occurrence of such injury.

Trip Cancellation/Or Interruption


Payment towards the non-refundable prepaid payments incurred on the trip being cancelled and additional cost of transportation in case of Interruption: due to medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters or other listed reason in policy wordings.


Trip Delay


 Reimbursement of additional expenses if trip is delayed beyond a period, due to airline problems, medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters.

 Daily Allowance in case of Hospitalisation

 Payment of daily allowance for the days the Insured is hospitalised beyond a specified number of days, as mentioned in the Policy Schedule, for which a valid claim is admissible under the Policy whilst on a trip abroad.Emergency Accommodation

 Payment of compensation for the additional cost of emergency accommodation if the Insured/ Insured Person could not stay in the accommodation originally booked due to ­fire& flood, earthquake, storm, hurricane, explosion, outbreak of major infectious diseases.

Why do I need Travel insurance?

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