Popular Alcoholic Drinks in Sri Lanka

Apart from sampling the local cuisine, part of the fun when travelling to new destinations involves also trying out the local firewater [Read More…]

The Rock Fortress of Sigiriya

Located in in the North Central Province, approximately a 3 hour drive from Colombo, Sigiriya rises to [Read more]

The 17th century Dutch fort within which the old quarter of Galle is a Unesco World Heritage Site lying on the south west coast of Sri Lanka around 170 kilometres away from Colombo, and is the best preserved sea fort in South Asia.

Standing since the early 16th century when the Portuguese seized the city from the Sinhalese Kings and erected a single wall fronted by a moat which stretched from the sea to the harbour. In 1640 sovereignty fell to the Dutch  after their defeat of the Portuguese and they converted the site into a walled fortress. It was under Dutch rule that the city enjoyed its heyday as a trading port between the East and Europe.

You can walk a whole circuit of the fort walls in under 2 hours – a trip best done near dusk as the heat of the day subsides – and watch children playing cricket in the long shadow of the lighthouse. Within the walls, time crosses centuries in the space of a moment as carts laden with goods are pulled through its narrow streets, past modern shops and trendy hotel verandahs. Many of the original Dutch houses still line narrow streets, some now renovated to their former colonial glory, others still preserved in their original state with many in desperate need of some TLC.

Buzz Trips Opinion

The walled city is a magnificent snapshot in time which withstood the 2004 tsunami that destroyed much of the town. There has been more change over the past ten years than for hundreds before, with Galle now the place for monied ex pats to spend their days in colonial luxury. But outside of the chic hotels and villas, the character, soul and romance of the city remains and couples still sit hand in hand beneath their parasols on the city walls.

Buzz Experience
Just along the coast from Galle is the beautiful beach of Unawatuna and the fascinating stilt fishermen who must surely fall off those poles with monotonous regularity. You’ll only see the fishermen if the current is going in the right direction, or if you point a camera towards the poles…the first will yield fish; the second a hand for some rupees.

(Galle header and montage images by Jacks Hillaby)

 

Hotel Amangalla, Fort Galle

A chic, trendy, boutique hotel which exudes exclusivity and style, right in the heart of the Galle Fort. If you want to stay in an integral part of the city's history and don't mind paying for the privilege, the Amangalla won't disappoint [Read More]

Buzz Meal: Galle Fort Hotel

Next door to the Amangalla, Australian owners Karl Steinberg and Christopher Ong have immaculately restored and converted a 17th century Dutch merchant house into a boutique hotel and restaurant. Fusing Asian cuisine with traditional Sri Lankan, the menu features such exquisite delights as Wok Fried Chicken with Chillli Jam with Jasmine Rice. Top notch, gourmet cuisine in a heavenly setting.
28, Church Street, Fort Galle; (0094) 91 2232870, Galle Fort Hotel

Buzz Read: Anil’s Ghost

In Anil's Ghost, the celebrated Sri Lankan author of The English Patient takes us on a troubled journey through a paradise racked by civil turmoil - his homeland. Presented through the eyes of the novel's heroine, Anil Tissera, a forensic anthropologist who returns as part of a United Nations investigation team to a Sri Lanka she left 15 years earlier, the terrifying consequences of civil war unfold over the course of the novel.[Read More...]