Among the must-stop destinations in Sri Lanka, Negombo holds a very special place with its beautiful beaches and unique culture. Let us get you covered from the biggest to the smallest thing you need to know about Negombo in this article.
Located approximately 5 miles away from the Bandaranaike International Airport, Negombo is a traditional fishing town in Sri Lanka that attracts many local and foreign travelers all year round. It has beautiful golden sandy beaches, top-notch beach resorts, and old Dutch-era remnants to be explored. This place gets fully charged during the Christmas season with vibrant nightlife, which is worth seeing.
So, shall we find the obvious reasons to fall in love with beautiful Negombo? Read along till the end and thank us later!
Getting To Know About Negombo…
Negombo, locally known as “Meegamuwa”, is one of the main coastal cities in Sri Lanka. Located on the west coast of the Western Province of the country, it is about 24 miles away from the main city of Colombo while it will take only around 15 minutes to reach Negombo from the Bandaranaike International Airport.
The lagoon of Negombo is one of the most prominent places in the area since it is one of the major lagoons in the country among the 24 others. Being one of the major commercial hubs in the country, Negombo contributes a lot to the fishing industry existing in the country for many years.
With a majority of the Catholic population in the area, it is also pseudonymized as “Little Rome”. Most people in the country say that you should be going to Negombo if you want to witness a real Christmas in the country.
The area is known for its pristine beaches, making it an ultimate holiday destination for both local and foreign travelers. Thanks to its close proximity to the Bandaranaike International Airport, most visitors make it the first place to travel in their Sri Lankan itinerary or the last spot to hit before they leave the country.
A Bit From The History Of Negombo
Negombo was one of the first to be conquered by the Portuguese, who transformed many of the local Karavas. This area remains a bastion of Christian Sri Lanka, as carried out by the imposing churches and flamboyant wayside Catholic shrines dispersed about the town and its surroundings.
The Dutch converted Negombo into a significant commercial center, constructing a canal and a fortress to protect it. Spices, particularly the valuable Ceylon cinnamon, which grew lavishly in the surrounding areas were transported from the inside of the coast.
However, at present, much of the town’s economy spins around tourism, although fishing also remains critically important. The sea provides plentiful supplies of various fish, while the Negombo lagoon, reinforcing the town, is the key to some of the country’s premium quality crabs, prawns, and lobster.
How To Get To Negombo?
Well, getting to Negombo is a lot easier than getting to any other place in the country! The reason we say this is, as we said earlier, it is located very close to the Bandaranaike International Airport so you can easily reach here as the first place to hit after landing in Sri Lanka.
This could be a really good start to your Sri Lankan itinerary as you’ll be experiencing many wonderful things around here. However, you can take a public bus or hire a private car or a tuk-tuk to come to Negombo. If you plan to go to Colombo first and then come to Negombo later, still you can take the bus or travel by a hired vehicle.
If not, you can also board the train from the Fort Railway Station and come to Negombo Station. Whatever way you choose, you can pick it depending on your requirement and budget. While public transportation is always cheaper in Sri Lanka. Private transportation may cost a little higher.
Roaming Around Negombo…
Since Negombo is a highly touristy area, there are plenty of Tuk-tuks, vehicles for hire, and even bicycles for rent if you need trans[portaion to wander around Negombo.
You can either go for a metered taxi or pick a random tuk-tuk to explore around. Traveling by bicycle is also a fantastic experience especially if you’re a solo traveler or traveling with your partner. You can even hire a rider guide to help you see around.
The Memorable Experiences You Can Have In Negombo
One might only think about the sun and beach when we say that Negombo is a traditional coastal town. But in reality, this spectacular city offers much more than that to its visitors to experience and enjoy. While Negombo main beach and Browns Beach will give you an exquisite taste of the sea and sand, there are also many water sports you can do on these beaches such as swimming, water skiing, kite surfing, etc.
This is also one of the best places in the country to spend a laid-back holiday with your family and friends to get away from your hectic lives. Enjoy your time spent exploring the town area and go sightseeing at the magnificent catholic shrines that showcase stunningly beautiful paintings and carvings. You can also take a boat ride in the Hamilton Canal, watching the beautiful scenery around Negombo.
Do not forget to visit the Negombo lagoon and fish market to enjoy the hustle of a traditional fishing village. If you visit Negombo during the Christmas season, you’ll be able to experience some of the best moments in life with the spirited seasonal kick of the area. This coastal beach usually comes to life and illuminates at night. You can party all night long indulging in drinks and fresh seafood from beachfront bars and pubs.
Nearby Experiences That You Shouldn’t Miss When Visiting Negombo
After you enjoy everything that Negombo offers, you can check out the following places for more entertainment:
- Muthurajawela Visitor Center
- Guruge Nature and Water Parks
- Hit the beaches in Wennappuwa
- Take a trip to Kalpitiya
You can also head off to Colombo which will take only 45 minutes from Negombo. You have endless places to visit in Colombo with an array of wonderful experiences to enjoy.
After exploring Colombo, you can plan your itinerary accordingly to hit other places along the coast like Kalutara, Bentota, Wadduwa, and other places up to the southern edge of the country. If not, you can take a detour and go towards the central highlands of Sri Lanka.
What is the Best Time to Visit Negombo?
You can visit Negombo any time of the year and the climate there is average hot and warm. However, the best time to travel to this place would be from February to April. Usually, the weather is favorable during this time, allowing you to roam around freely to have a better experience.
Rainfall is usually expected from May to August. You can also visit Negombo during November and December to have a more vibrant experience as they are getting ready for the season of Christmas.
Safety and Security Information About Negombo
Negombo is generally a safe place to visit with your family and even alone. The beaches are kid-friendly and no considerable crimes are recorded regarding tourists any time recently. However, it is important to pay attention to warning signs when you hit the beaches and to stay alert for the sea, especially at times when the sea is aggressive.
Also, it is vital to carry all your sun protection essentials as this area is hot and warm. It is always better to leave your valuable things in the place where you stay since common thefts can take place. Beware of the beach boys and scammers who would reach out to you for various reasons such as selling different things and some would even ask for money promising to guide you with sightseeing, etc.
Therefore, you should either hire an experienced, professional guide or else make your own list of places before visiting Negombo. You might have to bring certain medicines with you if you’re under lifetime medication because sometimes you might not find them here. Apart from this general safety and security information, there’s no special code of conduct that you should be following here.
Places to Eat and Stay in Negombo
If you love fresh seafood, Negombo is one of the best places in the country to savor delicious seafood dishes made in various ways. From traditional prawn curry, and crab curry to calamari dishes, lobsters, and fish, small eateries and hotels have their own unique seafood menus.
So, you can try a variety of foods along with cocktails, juices, smoothie bowls, and snacks from many places in Negombo. You will also find some of the country’s best hotels.
Beachside villas, hostels, luxury hotels, resorts, budget stays–you can choose anything for a comfortable stay depending on your needs. Here are some of our recommendations to spend your holiday in Negombo:
- Heritance Negombo
- Jetwing Blue
- Jetwing Sea Hotel
- Jetwing Lagoon
- Jetwing Thalahena Villas
- Regal Réseau Hotel & Spa
Enjoy The Vibe Of “Little Rome” As You Walk Along The Coast Of A Beautiful Beach In Negombo…
Negombo, located in the Western Province of Gampaha District of Sri Lanka, is undoubtedly one of the exceptional places in the country you should not miss out on.
It gives a striking vibe, taking you to some of the most stunning beaches on the western coast, treating you with scrumptious fresh seafood, and feasting your eyes with magnificent Catholic shrines and Dutch-era establishments.
Negombo, being one of the epicenters of the country’s fishing resources, is also a wonderful spot to spend an unforgettable holiday with your entire family!