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Galle

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An enchanting coastal city with a rich history

Galle is one of Sri Lanka’s most enchanting destinations, home to the famous 17th century Dutch Fort which houses many beautiful pieces of colonial architecture behind its walls, as well as an absorbing collection of quirky shops and restaurants. Wander the quaint streets and stroll along the ramparts. Galle is an expansive area, encompassing not only the famed fort but also a variety of beach towns, including lively Unawatuna and tranquil Thalpe, as well as stunning rural inland villages surrounded by rice paddies and cinnamon plantations.

Fun Facts

  • The science fiction writer, Arthur C. Clarke, lived in Sri Lanka from 1956 until his death in 2008, and used to dive from Rumassala headland close to Galle.

Experiences & Things to Do at Galle

A visit to a modern-day tea factory - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
A visit to a modern-day tea factory

Take a tour of a working low country tea plantation and discover how this plant varies from the tea grown in Sri Lanka’s central highlands.

A visit to the Virgin White tea factory – Koggala - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
A visit to the Virgin White tea factory – Koggala

The Handunugoda Tea Estate is home to the historic Virgin White Tea Factory, which produces a rare tea completely untouched by human hands.

Art on the Ramparts (for kids) - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Art on the Ramparts (for kids)

Kids will love this arts and crafts experience within Galle Fort, led by a teacher who specializes in ‘early years’. Kids as young as 4 are welcome.

Bikes, Boats and Bites - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Bikes, Boats and Bites

After a tranquil and scenic boat ride, cycle 9km to a local village where you will enjoy hoppers cooked in the traditional way over a fire.

History and architecture walk around Galle Fort - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
History and architecture walk around Galle Fort

A resident of Galle, your host is a passionate individual who’s well-versed with the area’s colonial history and its vibrant modern-day culture.

Kanneliya Rainforest trek with lunch in a lake - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Kanneliya Rainforest trek with lunch in a lake

The Kanneliya Rainforest is home to a diverse range of Sri Lanka’s flora and fauna and hides breath-taking sites such as waterfalls and lakes.

Learn to cook biriyani with a fort family - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Learn to cook biriyani with a fort family

Go to a private home within Galle Fort and join your host and her daughters in learning how to make Biriyani from scratch.

Paddy Island Cooking Class - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Paddy Island Cooking Class

Private Yoga Classes - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Private Yoga Classes

Rejuvenate the senses through a private 1.5-hour session with an expert yoga instructor. Choose to have your lesson in one of three spots.

Roti dinner in a rice paddy - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Roti dinner in a rice paddy

Decorated with soft candles and torches that add a touch of romance to the setting, this is an excellent private dining experience.

Scenic guided bicycle trails - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Scenic guided bicycle trails

With a range of trails of varying lengths and difficulties, this is a great way for anyone to explore Galle’s stunning rural countryside.

Snorkeling by the lighthouse with a local diver - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Snorkeling by the lighthouse with a local diver

Snorkel in the shallow waters just behind the Galle Fort lighthouse with a local diver and explore the exotic marine life here.

The Story of Cinnamon – Koggala - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
The Story of Cinnamon – Koggala

Go on a walking tour through a working cinnamon plantation with a local planter, and afterwards enjoy a cinnamon-themed lunch.

Traditional art tour with an award-winning craftsman - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Traditional art tour with an award-winning craftsman

This invigorating whistle-stop tour of various art workshops in Ambalangoda is a must for art-lovers. Finish with a visit to a local temple.

Traditional mask-making workshop with an artist - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Traditional mask-making workshop with an artist

Learn the art of Kolam mask-carving, guided by an artisan craftsman. Discover every stage of this ancient practice, then carve your own!

Traditional Sri Lankan cooking class - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Traditional Sri Lankan cooking class

Start at the Galle market before heading to a rural village by boat. The class is held in a cool, traditional wattle-and-daub hut.

Walking tour of the fort with a building archaeologist - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Walking tour of the fort with a building archaeologist

Stroll through the iconic Galle Fort and discover the impact the European colonial powers had on Sri Lankan culture and its architecture.

Lunch with Galle’s gem family - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Lunch with Galle’s gem family

Get to know Ifthikar Mahuroof and his family, descendants of Galle’s most famous and successful gem merchants.

Past to present walking tour with a 5th generation fort resident - Galle -  Sri Lanka In Style
Past to present walking tour with a 5th generation fort resident

A resident of Galle from a Muslim family, your host is well-versed with the area’s colonial history and its vibrant modern-day culture.


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