Experiences in Galle

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Galle covers a wide area, from the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Galle Fort to the beaches which surround it, including Unawatuna, Thalpe and Koggala, and some rural inland places. SriLankaInStyle offers a vast range of experiences in this area, as it is extraordinarily diverse and caters to a wide variety of interests, from thrill-seekers looking to indulge in exciting water-sports to those who are keen to explore Sri Lanka’s fascinating history and culture.

The beaches near Galle are in themselves surprisingly varied: popular Unawatuna Bay is a great spot for lively beach bars and trying some exhilarating water-sports, including snorkelling, wake-boarding, scuba diving and sea kayaking; Thalpe is ideal for those seeking to relax on a tranquil tropical beach, and is home to the renowned Wijaya Beach restaurant; surfers in search of some great waves should head to Ahangama, whilst Koggala is famous for the Sri Lankan stilt fishermen and its near-deserted beach. Between Narigama and Dodanduwa – west of Galle – you’ll find pristine, unspoiled beaches which offer the ultimate escapist getaway. Jungle Beach, a secluded cove near Unawatuna which is thickly veiled by jungle on all sides, is tricky to access but can be found with some help from the friendly local fishermen.

We also offer a range of exclusive experiences in the inland areas which surround Galle, all of which give an insight into authentic Sri Lankan culture. Visit the Virgin White Tea Factory, or learn all about the story of cinnamon. Go cycling along quiet paths passing picturesque paddy fields, or try our ‘Bikes, Boats and Bites’ tour which takes you on a scenic journey along the river to a local village for some traditional hoppers cooked over an open fire. The active may also like to trek through the tranquil Kanneliya Rainforest, or take a private yoga class in stunning surroundings.

There are numerous experiences to try within Galle Fort as well. Foodies will love learning how to cook Biriyani with a local family, or taking the Paddy Island cooking class and discovering how to make a variety of traditional Sri Lankan curries. Couples seeking romance should have a private roti dinner in the middle of a paddy field, illuminated by oil lamps. We also offer several experiences for those with an artistic eye: take a mask-making workshop with a local artist, or go on a full art tour in nearby Ambalangoda and explore several traditional Sri Lankan crafts including puppetry and batik. Children will love our ‘Art on the Ramparts’ activities whilst parents go on a walking tour around the Fort.

Hosted Experiences

Kids will love this arts and crafts experience within Galle Fort, led by a teacher who specializes in ‘early years’. Kids as young as 4 are welcome.

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Go to a private home within Galle Fort and join your host and her daughters in learning how to make Biriyani from scratch.

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Rejuvenate the senses through a private 1.5-hour session with an expert yoga instructor. Choose to have your lesson in one of three spots.

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Snorkel in the shallow waters just behind the Galle Fort lighthouse with a local diver and explore the exotic marine life here.

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This invigorating whistle-stop tour of various art workshops in Ambalangoda is a must for art-lovers. Finish with a visit to a local temple.

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Learn the art of Kolam mask-carving, guided by an artisan craftsman. Discover every stage of this ancient practice, then carve your own!

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Stroll through the iconic Galle Fort and discover the impact the European colonial powers had on Sri Lankan culture and its architecture.

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Get to know Ifthikar Mahuroof and his family, descendants of Galle’s most famous and successful gem merchants.

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A resident of Galle from a Muslim family, your host is well-versed with the area’s colonial history and its vibrant modern-day culture.

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Individual Experiences

Take a tour of a working low country tea plantation and discover how this plant varies from the tea grown in Sri Lanka’s central highlands.

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The Handunugoda Tea Estate is home to the historic Virgin White Tea Factory, which produces a rare tea completely untouched by human hands.

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After a tranquil and scenic boat ride, cycle 9km to a local village where you will enjoy hoppers cooked in the traditional way over a fire.

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A resident of Galle, your host is a passionate individual who’s well-versed with the area’s colonial history and its vibrant modern-day culture.

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The Kanneliya Rainforest is home to a diverse range of Sri Lanka’s flora and fauna and hides breath-taking sites such as waterfalls and lakes.

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Decorated with soft candles and torches that add a touch of romance to the setting, this is an excellent private dining experience.

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With a range of trails of varying lengths and difficulties, this is a great way for anyone to explore Galle’s stunning rural countryside.

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Go on a walking tour through a working cinnamon plantation with a local planter, and afterwards enjoy a cinnamon-themed lunch.

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Start at the Galle market before heading to a rural village by boat. The class is held in a cool, traditional wattle-and-daub hut.

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