Beacon of Colombo port, one of the city's best places to watch a sunset
The lighthouse provides stunning views of the Indian Ocean. From its raised base – protected by four lions - you can see all the way down the Galle Face Green. Constructed in the 50s, this isn't an obvious architectural gem, but the views it offers around are breathtaking. The 29-metre tall lighthouse isn’t very old. It was only built in 1952 after the Old Colombo Lighthouse was deactivated when its light became obscured by the buildings around it.
The Portuguese called this spot Galle Boca (Rocky Belly) which the English anglicised to Galle Buck. “In the olden days, we would always hang out here” say Ranee and Sato who used to work in Fort in the 1960s. “Kids would run about here to fly kites and we would have picnics”. About a century earlier Dutch officer J.B. Siebel writes “It’s sheltered coves and bays were frequented by ‘mermaids’ and merry ‘mermen’, and over the waves, the shrill shriek of the steam whistle was heard”.
Next door is the navy run Light House Galley restaurant and bar. Service can be a bit erratic, but if you manage to track down a waiter and menu you can find yourself a cool beverage and some bites.