Ranked among Sri Lanka’s most romantic beach holiday hotspots for couples, Galle offers romantic pairs an array of enchanting attractions. From iconic heritage sites to breathtaking natural spaces, here’s a rundown of Galle highlights couples can’t afford to miss.
Just a stone’s throw away from the Jetwing Lighthouse Hotel, the Dutch Galle Fort is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places in Galle. The UNESCO World Heritage Site which dates back to the 16th century was constructed by Portuguese colonizers but remains the southern coast’s most popular landmark to date. As a city within a city, couples will find the cafes, restaurants and art galleries inside the fort just as engaging as the views of the sunset available from its towering ramparts. The architectural and historic point of interest is also home to several colonial churches and museums where couples can take a step back in time, hand in hand.
Environmentally conscious couples based at Jetwing Kurulubedda should also visit the Mahamodara Sea Turtle Hatchery. As one of Galle’s most successful conservation hubs, the hatchery is dedicated to saving endangered sea turtle species from extinction through its breeding and rescue programs. Couples who love to take part in eco-friendly activities can sign up to collect turtle eggs from the beach or witness the magical moment when hatchlings are released back into the ocean. Those who wish to learn more about the turtle species that call the hatchery home and the centre’s rescue activities will find informative guides at the location.
Tipped to be one of the most romantic places in Galle, the crescent-shaped beach known as Unawatuna is known to have been dropped from the heavens if local legends are to be believed. Believed to have been a portion of the Himalayan Mountains, the monkey god Hanuman from Ramayana fame supposedly dropped his precious cargo and thus created this beach. Ideal for honeymooners and couples with a love of water sports, Unawatuna is a peaceful world away from Galle’s more congested beaches.
Ideally situated inside the Bay of Galle, Flag Rock is one of the most romantic Galle fort attractions due to the stunning views it affords of the southwestern coastline of the island. Occupying the fort’s southernmost edge, the rock was once a bastion used to alert approaching sea vessels of the rocky terrain on their path. Before the Galle Lighthouse was constructed, muskets would fire at the water from Pigeon Island to warn ships of the rocks up ahead. Couples grab a cup of tea or coffee from the cafes around Flag Rock and watch the sun go down from this well-known lookout point.
Spread out over two floors, this former warehouse turned museum is one of the best cultural attractions in Galle. Those with a flair for nautical history will find the replicas of the warships and the remnants of old seafaring vessels on display fascinating relics of the past. The whale skeletons and coral collection are just as impressive as the many treasures uncovered from shipwrecks in Galle.
Romantically inclined visitors staying at the Galle Heritage Villa by Jetwing can also embark on a memorable hike up Rumassala Hill, one of Galle’s favourite observation hotspots. The seaside mountain is not only known for the many medicinal plants and fauna found within its lush confines but also as a gateway to sandy Jungle Beach. The Kanneliya Rainforest is another highlight for nature-loving couples in search of a hiking trail in the heart of paradise.
No trip to Galle would be complete without a couple’s massage or treatment session at the Ayurveda Spa in the Jetwing Lighthouse Hotel. There’s nothing quite indulging in a couple’s massage followed by a floral bath at this luxury spa where candle-lit dinners can also be arranged.