Experience the Rich Culture of Galle Fort: A Must-Visit Destination in Sri Lanka

Written by Ruwani Madushani | Created on 5th Jan 2023

Experience the Rich Culture of Galle Fort: A Must-Visit Destination in Sri Lanka

Galle Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the southern coastal city of Galle, Sri Lanka, is a cultural gem not to be missed. From its Dutch colonial architecture to its vibrant street markets, there is no shortage of things to see and do within the fort's walls. Visit the Galle National Museum, try some local cuisine at one of the many restaurants, or simply wander the streets and soak up the unique atmosphere. Don't miss this opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich culture of Galle Fort during your visit to Sri Lanka


The Portuguese were the first to arrive in Galle, building a small fort there in 1588. However, they were later ousted by the Dutch, who took control of the fort in 1640 and began expanding and strengthening it. The Dutch made numerous renovations to the fort, including the construction of new walls, gates, and buildings. Many of these structures, such as the Dutch Reformed Church and the Old Dutch Hospital, still stand today and are popular tourist attractions.

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the British colonial government used the fort as a military base and administrative center. After Sri Lanka gained independence in 1948, the fort was returned to the Sri Lankan government and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. Today, it is a popular tourist destination and is known for its unique blend of Portuguese, Dutch, and British architecture, as well as its rich cultural history.


Things to do in Galle Fort








  • Explore the historic streets and buildings of the fort, including the Dutch Reformed Church, the Dutch Hospital, the Old Gate, and the Old Harbour.
  • Visit the National Maritime Museum, which is located in the fort and contains exhibits on the history of Galle and its role in the spice trade.
  • Take a stroll along the ramparts of the fort, which offer great views of the surrounding area.
  • Visit the Galle Lighthouse, which was built in 1848 and offers panoramic views of the fort and the city.
  • Shop for souvenirs at the many boutiques and handicraft shops located within the fort.
  • Enjoy the local cuisine at one of the many restaurants and cafes in the fort.
  • Visit the Galle International Stadium, which is located just outside the fort and is one of the best cricket grounds in the country.
  • Take a day trip to the nearby beaches, such as Unawatuna or Mirissa, which are known for their beautiful sands and clear waters.