Colombo, Sri Lanka
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Approximately 2 Hours
Meals not included
Colombo, capital and major port of Sri Lanka, is a fascinating city that links the past with the present. Its tangible history is a unique mix of relics of Portuguese, Dutch and English settlement, blended with Indian influences.
Leave the port on this panoramic drive, passing the commercial district and heading through the Pettah Bazaar area. The views are more serene as you drive past Vihara Mahadevi Park, named for a Sinhalese queen. Across the street is the imposing neo-Classical Town Hall. Colombo high society once strolled on Galle Face Green to see and be seen by those who mattered. Today, joggers talk politics and business as they run, and kite-flyers try to catch a breeze against the backdrop of the neo-Classical façades of the Colombo Club and the Galle Face Hotel. The hotel is still there, as it has been since 1864, enjoying the oceanfront view and laying claim to its position as the first hotel in Asia.
A former cinnamon plantation is now the upscale residential district of Cinnamon Gardens. Here you will also find the University and most of the embassies housed in colonial mansions along lovely, shaded avenues. Cruise some of these streets and enjoy their elegance and serenity; then, drive past the Jami-ul-Akbar Mosque as you return to the pier and the ship.