With the dawn of the New Year the Colombo City Tour introduces a synergy of exciting experiences combining thrilling boat rides with open deck city tours. The Colombo City Tour’s ‘Heritage of Colombo’ tours that sightsee the city of Colombo and the administrative capital Sri Jayawardanapura Kotte now include boat rides on the serene waters of the Diyawanna Lake, highlighting the grandeur and the architecture of the supreme legislature of the country, the Parliament complex.
Designed by the world renowned Sri Lankan Architect Deshamanya Geoffrey Bawa, the Parliament Complex is built on a 12-acre island reclaimed from the historic Diyawana Oya, an ancient water way in Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte.
The most symbolic of Bawa’s work, the edifice with its huge copper roofs of pavilions large and small and supports of timber and stone columns of traditional patterns, echoes the architecture of palaces and temples of ancient Sri Lanka. Both Sri Lankan and foreign guests have relished on the unique opportunity offered to view this edifice in almost all angles, rising from the waters of the Diyawanna Lake, in almost all angles. The approximately 40 minute boat ride also presents a rare treat to nature lovers as it travels through the small islets on the lake. Rare glimpses can be made of the natural beauty and the many species of resident and migrant birds in the surroundings including the spectacular spot billed Pelican and the Indian Pond Heron among many other birds and reptiles.
The weekday tours ‘Glimpse of Colombo’ sightseeing within the city limits of Colombo, highlights many places of historic significance such as the prison cell of the last King of the Kandyan Kingdom, which humbly nestles next to the high rise buildings in Colombo Fort, the Chatham Street clock tower and light house which is two years older than the ‘Big Ben’ of Westminster in London and designed by Lady Ward, the wife of the British Governor Sir Henry Ward, built in 1857 among many other places of significance. The Colombo City Tour also highlights among others the Slave island area, where slaves mainly from Africa were held during the Portuguese and the Dutch administration, today, as an area that portrays the harmonious blend and unique tapestry of many cultures, races and religions in the city. Live commentaries on board by professional guides in English and snacks complete the joyous Colombo City Tour open deck double decker rides of the city.
Ebert Silva Holidays Chairperson Rajini de Silva Mendis extended her appreciation to the Sri Lanka Navy for the support extended in enabling the Colombo City Tour to add a unique and safe experience which will be most valued by visitors from around the world. There are many more exciting plans for the new year she added, which will make positive contributions to the industry. Colombo is a unique city of rich historical importance which was known as ‘Kolonthota’ to seafarers from many centuries. Today, as one of the fastest growing cities with a fast changing skyline, it is swiftly unfolding into a foremost tourist destination, attaining its former eminence in the region,” she added.