If you are fascinated by history, culture, and religion, then you might consider taking your next cruise from Colombo, Sri Lanka. Filled with just about something for everyone, Colombo is a wonderful blend of old-world and modern-day. In addition to a scenic waterfront, you will discover curious temples, shrines, churches, parks and beaches. There are also some fabulous shopping opportunities, as well as a bunch of modern tourist attractions (such as casinos, amusement parks, and golf clubs). Plus, you’ll never go hungry, as many parts of Colombo are filled street food vendors. From freshly spicy samosas to fresh seafood specialties and as much curry and spice as you can handle, your taste buds are in for one unforgettable feast.
A great time to visit Colombo is between January and March, as that is when the least amount of rainfall tends to occur.
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The following cruise destinations can be visited on a cruise that includes Colombo. Select a destination to view the upcoming cruises that are available:
The following cruise lines offer cruises sailing to Colombo. Select a cruise line to view the upcoming cruises that visit Colombo:
These cruise lines fit (quality and, usually, price-wise) somewhere in between Premium and Luxury cruise lines.
A country club casual atmosphere can be expected on these lines, as can be elegant accommodations and gourmet cuisine. These cruise lines are a great option for adults looking for a upscale, yet laid back, vacation.
Unique itineraries are often available on these cruise lines, as their small-to-mid-sized ships can visit ports of call that large ones can't get to.
The pricing on Azamara Club Cruises includes select beverages and pre-paid gratuities, while the pricing of Viking Ocean Cruises includes shore excursions and select beverages.
These cruise lines enhance what mainstream cruise lines typically offer, by providing their guests with higher quality service and cuisine, along with more spacious public spaces and accommodations.
Depending on the cruise line, the ships in this class range in size from small to very large.
These cruise lines appeal to a more discerning traveler, and are typically more expensive than mainstream cruise lines, but more affordable than the luxury lines.
Value is a key feature of these popular cruise lines, as they offer lots of activities, entertainment and dining options, along with a variety of stateroom types. Some of the cruise lines in this category have ships with unique innovations like water slides, rock-climbing walls, ice-skating rinks, surfing simulators, bowling alleys, and boardwalks.
Their ships are usually anywhere from mid-sized to very large "mega" ships, accommodating thousands of guests. These ships give the feel of being in a large resort.
Mainstream cruise lines are a great option for just about everyone (including multi-generation families, and first-time cruisers), and typically have great youth programs.
During the cruise, entertainment may include Broadway productions, Vegas-style shows, comedians, and music. Some of these lines have select formal nights during the cruise. Specialty restaurants are becoming more and more common (some which have a cover charge for this type enhanced dining experience). Buffets are usually available throughout the day, besides room service, and the main dining room(s).
When the finest cruise vacation is your top priority, this is the place to start.
On a luxury cruise line, guests experience highly personalized service, a more intimate (and usually formal) onboard experience, gourmet cuisine, well-appointed accommodations, and fantastic amenities. Many of these brands have smaller ships, allowing them to reach ports of call that the larger ships can't, which results in unique itineraries.
All of these brands feature a version of all-inclusive pricing, and some of them have ships with all-suite accommodations. Although these cruise lines are usually more expensive than the rest, they also provide their guests with so much more, resulting in a fantastic value when considering all that's included.
These cruise lines offer a truly unique vacation experience, with a wide range of possible amenities and itineraries. Some are expedition cruise lines, others have sailing yachts or are coastal ships.
On these types of cruise lines, there's usually a focus on a specific destination or theme. Itineraries are usually very destination intensive, aided by the fact that they're able to reach many ports of call that larger ships can't.
Expedition cruise lines are a great fit for adventure-seeking travelers, featuring exciting destinations like the Galapagos Islands, Antarctica, and the Norwegian coast. During the cruise, there will usually be plenty of interesting lectures given by experts on the destination being visited. Often, shore excursions are included in the cost of the cruise. In fact, some of these cruise lines have all-inclusive pricing. There's a definite focus on the ship's surrounding scenery, as well as opportunities to view wildlife in their natural habitat. Small, but comfortable, ships are commonplace here, with anywhere from basic to very luxurious public spaces, cuisine, and accommodations (depending on the cruise line and ship).
Sailing Yachts, sail-assisted motor ships, offer a really unique vacation experience. Accommodations and cuisine on these intimate vessels can be anywhere from good to fantastic, depending on the cruise line. Destinations offered by these cruise lines may include the Caribbean, Europe, Panama Canal, Tahiti, and Costa Rica.
These are just a few of the more popular tourist attractions in Colombo, along with a brief description:
♦ Gangaramaya Temple
Gangaramaya Temple is one of the most significant and most visited temples in Colombo. This 19th century sanctuary is situated on Beira lake and boasts an interesting blend of contemporary architecture (Sri Lankan, Thai, Indian, and Chinese influences) with cultural roots. In addition to the main temple, there is also a Bodhi tree and a museum that showcases Buddha and Hindu God statues, old cars and other artifacts. If you only have time to visit one temple while visiting Colombo, you won’t regret checking out the Gangaramaya Temple.
♦ Galle Face Green
If you’re looking to have a fabulous time outdoors, consider paying a visit to Galle Face Green before or after your cruise from Colombo. This 12-acre urban park stretches 1,600 feet along Colombo’s beautiful coastline. Galle Face Green is especially popular for picnics, kite-flying, local street food vendors, sunset-watching, and immersing yourself in the local atmosphere. It is also conveniently located in close proximity to a few major hotels, including the Ceylon Inter-Continental Hotel and Galle Face Hotel.
♦ Pettah Floating Market
No visit to Colombo is complete without visiting a traditional floating market. The Pettah Floating Market features 92 red-roofed stalls that sell locally sourced produce and artisan crafts. If you’re looking to enjoy a relaxing and peaceful afternoon with great scenery and food, this is a great place to do it. The market is open from 8 AM to 8 PM (subject to change).
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