Colombo Maritime Museum

Weather :

Timings : 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM (Monday - Saturday)

Entry Fee : LKR 500 for adults and LKR 300 for students

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Colombo Maritime Museum, Colombo Overview

The Colombo Maritime Museum is in one of the former Dutch prisons which were built in 1676 making it one of the oldest Dutch buildings in Colombo. The museum has undergone many renovations to date, and it has been open to the public since the year 2003. There are two stories in the museum which are made of unique architecture and design inspired by Italian architecture.

Colombo Maritime Museum has a beautiful entrance which is flanked by old fashioned canons. It houses beautiful sculptures, artefacts, models, paintings and maps which speak about the maritime history of Sri Lanka. The museum is also home to statues of King Vijaya, Sanghamitta, Fa-Hien, Ibn Battuta and the Portuguese, Dutch and British. In addition, there are models of ships which were brought to the shore by the British colonials.

Take a historical tour which will leave you spellbound lost in the beauty of the large size painting of the voyages of discoveries by famous men. These voyages have played a significant role in shaping Sri Lanka’s history, culture, and religion. There are also 3D displays of the harbour of Colombo along with paintings of the Colombo fort which depict the European conquests.

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Entrance Fees and Timings at the Colombo Maritime Museum

Timings: Open from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM (Closed on Sundays)

Entry fees: LKR 500 for adults and LKR 300 for students

Artefacts in the Colombo Maritime Museum

Suffering the aftermath of the Tsunami in the year 2004, there were many renovations which took place in the museum and the estimated cost to renovate and accommodate the artefacts was almost 25 million. The reconstruction took nearly four years till it was again made open to the public.

One will find various items on display which relate to the principal ports of the country along with the maritime industry.  All these items are systematically divided into two main galleries in the Colombo Maritime Museum.

The first gallery houses an impressive display of the types of warcraft used in passenger transport and maritime trading in the southern part of the country.  One will also get a peek into the traditional lifestyle of the fishing communities and fishing techniques, which is depicted through many replicas and models.

The second gallery has more of a natural perspective, where it focuses more on flora and fauna in the marine ecosystems. There are beautiful artificial models of the mangroves, seashore plants, turtles, sea birds, and marine mammals. One will also find objects from the depths of the ocean like specimens of corals and some pretty marine shells. But the highlight is the giant whale skeleton mounted on the ceiling which makes for a complete awe-inspiring experience.

How To Reach Colombo Maritime Museum

One has the option of renting a car or a taxi to reach the destination. If one is looking for a cheaper option, try out the three-wheeler (tuk-tuk).

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