Sri Lanka is known for its gems such as lustrous tea gardens, golden beaches, and exquisite locations. A vacation in Sri Lanka is simply incomplete until you have discovered some of its chaotic and soothing places to visit in Katunayake which includes its stunning sandy beaches. Nestled in the West coast of the island of Sri Lanka and in propinquity to the Negombo City is the beautiful town of Katunayake. Having witnessed a major transformation in its economy in 1977, it today stands as a free trade zone.
Katunayake presents enormous opportunities for travelers to have a lovely vacation. The city offers a plethora of mesmerizing locations, soothing winds and peaceful surroundings to relax and rejuvenate. Enjoy local authentic cuisine and shop on the street, and don’t forget to collect souvenirs and unique offerings for your loved ones.
12 Places To Visit In Katunayake
Here are some of the best places to visit in Katunayake that you must check out if you want to have an awesome experience in the city.
- Negombo Beach
- Muthurajawela Marsh
- Viharamahadevi Park
- Colombo Fort
- Bally’s Casino
- Dutch Canal, Colombo
- Wolvendaal Church, Colombo
- Dutch Museum, Colombo
- Gangaramaya Temple
- Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara
- Independence Square, Colombo
- Beira Lake
1. Negombo Beach
Situated nearby Colombo city’s international airport, the Negombo Beach is a stunning beauty to behold. If you are looking for a place to relax and unwind from the hustle bustle of the city, then this is the place to be. Find yourself lost in the beauty of lush palm trees and mesmerizing sunsets. Go for some adventure sports or take a lovely stroll along the beach with a cocktail in your hand as per your whims and desires. It is one of the most mesmerizing places to visit in Katunayake.
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2. Muthurajawela Marsh
Muthurajawela Marsh is the largest saline wetland and home to over 75 species of birds and 48 species of butterflies. The canal is located approximately 18 kms from Negombo and stands between the river Kelani and lagoon. Wrapped in dense mangrove trees, this is a must visit place for every nature lover. Opt for a fun boat ride to explore the unique flora and fauna this place treasures!
3. Viharamahadevi Park
A vacation to Sri Lanka with friends and family is incomplete without a trip to the Viharamahadevi Park. Adorned with beautiful lotus ponds, majestic trees, paved walkways, and a stunning fountain, this makes up for a perfect place for a fun time with loved ones. Particularly a fun place for kids, children can take delight in the jolly train rain, watch the animals in the mini zoo or gawk at the variety of fishes in the aquarium. The park is conveniently located opposite to the renowned colonial Town Hall in Colombo and is easy to reach. It also hosts golden statues of the Buddha, Queen Victoria, and Queen Viharamahadevi, showcasing the majestic heritage and culture.
4. Colombo Fort
The Colombo Fort is basically the central business district of Colombo in Sri Lanka that boasts of some stunning British style structures and new neighbourhoods. As history goes, Colombo Fort once served as the city’s main fort and also a walled city with administrative and military buildings, cinnamon storehouses and gardens, mills, residential buildings and more. The street is bustling with noisy vendors selling traditional items and witnesses a lot of tourist interest owing to its history and vicinity to the beautiful ocean. Some unique time-worn cafés and restaurants here offer delicious local delicacies and will transfer you to the Dutch era. You have got to check out this fort which is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Katunayake.
5. Bally's Casino
Witness the aura of this uber-chic casino and enjoy some fun time. Bally's Casino is not only known to be one of the biggest casinos in the world but is also admired for its superb hospitality. You can engage in a variety of games starting from poker, blackjack to roulettes along with live performances and foot tapping music. Enjoy to your heart’s content in an upscale environment with fun games. The casino is especially known for its unique drinks and delicacies which are a must try.
6. Dutch Canal, Colombo
If you are looking for best places to visit in Katunayake, then count this in. This tourist hotspot was constructed by the Dutch in the 18th century to facilitate irrigation as well as create an inland transportation system. Also called as the Hamilton canal, this canal connects the Kelani river in Colombo to the Puttalam lagoon to drain saline water from the paddy fields. A parallel canal runs alongside the Dutch canal for nearly 15 km giving tourists a picturesque journey through the lush green landscape of Sri Lanka. You can get into a boat and glide through the waterway coming across the local markets, people and their lifestyle.
7. Wolvendaal Church, Colombo
Here is a majestic building dating back to the 17th century. The Dutch constructed this architectural masterpiece more than 300 years ago and even today the structure stands in all its original glory. The quiet and withdrawn atmosphere of the church is perfect for you to relax and meditate for some time. The age old graves in the vicinity remind of the Dutch officials and aristocrats who once called Sri Lanka their home. A quick visit to this church will remind you of the colonial past of the country and how it has now become a part of their heritage.
8. Dutch Museum, Colombo
The influence of the Dutch can be seen in ways more than one in Colombo. The Dutch Period Museum is a culmination of all things related to Dutch era in Sri Lanka. If you are interested in history, this is the right place to be. You have to overlook the poor state in which the museum lies as it is not well maintained. The staff may not be converse fluently in English and thus you have to read the existing information and learn from it. But if you have a little time on your hand, we suggest you visit this place and appreciate the country’s rich history.
Suggested Read: The Ultimate Guide To Sri Lanka’s Dambulla Cave Temple
9. Gangaramaya Temple
One of the highly revered worship places, the Gangaramaya Temple is one of the main tourist places to visit in Katunayake. With beautiful surroundings, this is an architectural masterpiece combining different heritage and construction styles. This Buddhist temple houses Buddha’s hair, elephant’s skin, various precious gems, and other religious artifacts. The chanting of the monks is truly mesmerizing and soothing to the spirit. Spend some time walking through the rows of Buddha statues, the open garden, the library, and their education center. You would enjoy feeding the temple elephant or just sit in the temple soaking in the elevated spirituality.
10. Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara
Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara is one of the most prominent Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka. With more than 2500 years of history to it, this is the place Lord Buddha visited along with 500 monks invited by king Maniakkhikha. The location at which Buddha stood and preached is marked by a stupa. It is the perfect place to come face to face with Buddha’s life in the form of beautiful paintings and the artifacts like utensils and gen studded throne that belonged to him. You will also marvel as the 18 foot stone statue of Avalokiteshvara found here.
11. Independence Square, Colombo
This is a landmark sight in the city known for its natural beauty, cleanliness and historical significance. The lush green surroundings offer quality relaxation to the tourists. You will see hundreds of locals jogging, cycling and exercising here in the morning hours. It is an apt place to spend a few hours in the evening refreshing, enjoying some street food and shopping at the small shops in the area. The place is well maintained and thus makes an ideal picnic spot within the city.
12. Beira Lake
The lake is located in the center of the city, and has become a popular tourist spot. You will see many locals crowding the patchway surrounding the lake. You can take a quick ride on the lake by hiring a swan boat for nominal charges. You will find many benches to relax on and spend time in the bustling city. But this location is very poorly maintained, crowded all the time and its natural beauty is fast fading away. Due to pollution and industrialization, the sanity of the place is completely lost. This is not a must visit place, but you can stop by for a while if you are in the area.
With historical sites, cultural attractions, nature’s beauty, and fun casinos, the city of Katunayake has something to offer to every traveler. Every street tells a new story, just roam around and discover new adventures in every corner. When in Katunayake, renting a scooter is a good start to those fun moments and get familiar with the surroundings. trip to Sri Lanka
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