"Galle Fort - A World Heritage Site" Top 5 Page for this destination Galle by Sambawalk

Galle Travel Guide: 95 reviews and 310 photos

Flag flies high on National Day (4th Feb)

The port town of Galle is Sri Lanka's fourth biggest town. In 1505, a Portuguese fleet bound for Maldives blew off course, forcing them to take shelter in the Galle Harbour. In 1598, the Portuguese built a small fort which was later extended. In 1663, the Dutch built the 36-hectare Fort, which is now a World Heritage Site.

Galle is a major port in Sri Lanka and the country's fourth largest cities. The old town or Fort takes up the south part of the city. It was affected by the tsumani in Dec 2005. It was said to learn that when I was having a cup of tea in a tea stall facing the bus terminal and asking about the effect of the tsunami, the tea owner pointed at the 3 pics of young ladies which hanged up on the wall and said their lives were taken away by the tsunami.

I was glad that when I visited in Feb 2006, there was hardly any trace in the Fort area and the city. I do hope the people of Galle should forget the past amd move on.

Galle said to be the famous Tarshish of the Bible is the Port where the Portuguese first landed in Sri Lanka. Fortified by the Dutch who ruled maritime Sri Lanka in the 17th & 18th centuries the city still retains the air of old Holland. Old Dutch churches and monuments with armorial bearings, well preserved fort and ramparts, imposing crested and monogrammed gateway dated 1669, many well preserved Old Dutch houses and narrow alleys still bearing Dutch names. One may make a pick of exquisite handmade lace, ivory carvings, moonstone jewelry and beautiful translucent tortoise shell ware, including bracelets, trinket boxes, combs - sometimes inlaid with silver.

  • Last visit to Galle: Feb 2006
  • Intro Updated Aug 21, 2009
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