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SAUDIA takes you to Colombo, a patchwork of thoroughfares on land and water
If business is done in Colombo, it usually happens in Fort, the city’s financial and commercial district. This is where the Colombo Stock Exchange, the World Trade Centre of Colombo, and the Bank of Ceylon’s headquarters are. Colombo was known as the “Garden City of the East” and remnants of that moniker can still be found today. Beira Lake covers an incredible 65 ha in the center of the city and exchanges water with the city’s plethora of canals. Fort faces the Galle Face Green, a 5 ha park that runs along the Indian Ocean. It was previously used for a wide variety of sporting events including horse racing and golf as well as Sri Lanka’s favorite, cricket. Today the green fills with picnickers, people flying kites, and families out for a walk. Cricket was played at Viharamahadevi Park, Colombo’s oldest and largest park with its famous flowering trees. The park is near the National Museum of Colombo, which, amongst other treasures, houses the crown jewels. To view the stars above and see a show, plan a visit to the Sri Lanka Planetarium, the only one on the island. There are often visiting talks by professors from the University of Colombo, the oldest university in the country and one of the top centers of higher learning in South Asia. The outside of the Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapaksa Theatre, designed to resemble an eight-petal lotus flower, is almost as striking as what goes on inside. This eye-catching flower is a constant feature in Colombo: the Lotus Tower considered the second tallest structure in South Asia when completed.
Travel from Riyadh to Colombo, the largest city in Sri Lanka
The Khan Clock Tower, a famous landmark in the city sitting squarely on a busy roundabout’s island, marks the entrance to Pettah Market. The Pettah neighborhood, famous for all of its outdoor markets, bazaars, and stores, there is also where you will find Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque. Built in the early 20th century and its red-and-white candy cane strips (giving it its nickname of the “Red Mosque”) are truly stunning.