Search the best hotels in Galle
Scented with spice and sea spray, Galle is an almost tropical feeling little city, sitting on and around a little wedge of land jutting into the ocean. Before the Portuguese arrived in the 16th Century, Galle was a small village, but they quickly turned it into a major spice port, building an impressive fort - now considered the best example of a fortified port built by Europeans in South-East Asia - covering most of Galle's ocean promontory. The Dutch arrived in the 17th Century, and added to the fort, as well as building their homes and churches, so today's Galle is a beautiful mix of local and colonial architecture, and the best places to stay in Galle are among these beautiful buildings.
The, now UNESCO Heritage Listed, fort is full of bijou shops and cafes and boutique hotels. It's a hang out for writers, artists, poets etc.. And beyond that is a charming warren of streets. But this isn't just a historic fort and an old colonial port, it's very much a working administrative centre, and the city is full of real inhabitants, not just visitors and ex-pats who've been bewitched by Galle's allure.
Our pick of the best places to stay in Galle feature a restored merchant's house and an elegant 18th century mansion.
What not to miss:
- Watch the sunset from flag rock boasting views across the ocean and fort.
- Catch a game of cricket at the atmospheric pitch surrounded by the fort's walls.
- Explore the myriad of galleries, cafes and little museums located in the pretty winding alleys of the fort.
- Get out of the city for the day and hit the beach at Unawatuna.
- Take a walk along the fort walls.
The Best Places to Stay in Galle
In Central Galle
- The Sun House was originally built for a Scottish spice merchant in the 1860s, and its white, colonial elegance now houses seven rooms, including a large suite. A short walk from the fort, The Sun House has truly special views of Galle harbour. There's also an excellent restaurant serving Sri Lankan food - it's so good, even guests will need to book - and a beautiful, frangipani filled garden with a pool which feels pleasantly private.
- The Fort Printers is unassuming from the outside but this bijou hotel has had some high profile guests. Behind the traditional facade it's all double height ceilings and modern chic style.
For a room with a view
- The Dutch House is the sister hotel to The Sun House, and is blessed with similarly lovely views of Galle, from its hilltop position. This home was built for a Dutch naval officer in 1712, so the architecture is totally different. The decor inside is as well, there's an interesting selection of antiques and contemporary art on the walls. This is a hip spot, and with just four rooms.
- Amangalla is Galle's top address. Cast your worries aside as you are taken care of by the world renowned Aman group. Located in a handsome, white colonial building you'll find chic interiors and suites crammed with period pieces and beautiful bathrooms.
- The Dutch House is a peaceful 18th century mansion overlooking Galle. Elegant interiors are decorated in rich ochres with antiques, contemporary art.
For a beach stay
- Aditya Resort is a contemporary boutique hotel located on its own stretch of palm lined beach. Airy rooms feature splashes of pop colours, traditional furnishings and design quirks such as split levels and outdoor rain showers.
For a rural hideaway
- Galle Hotel is situated on the fringe of town and is a tranquil hideaway. A centuries old property, decorated in a Dutch, Sri Lankan and colonial style.
For contemporary style
- Jetwing Lighthouse is a chic design hotel housed in this former lighthouse. Blending clean lines with design quirks, bedrooms are light and bright with large bathrooms.
The Best Boutique Hotels in Galle
- A boutique property in the truest sense, it is the small touches that make Why House stand out from the crowd. The rooms are decorated with white linens, four poster beds and large windows that let in the breeze.
- Apa Villa Thalpe is located on its own stretch of private beach with stunning infinity pool. This is the ultimate in well priced luxury.
- The Frangipani Tree is a chic boutique property set on a quiet stretch of beach. Design is traditional throughout with high beamed ceilings and whirring fans alongside cool contemporary touches such as the luxurious open plan bathrooms.
Prefer an apartment or villa?
- If you've decided that a self catering property would be more suitable for your holiday, then we recommend you visit our online booking partner, Booking.com where they have a wide selection for all tastes and budgets.
- Fly to Bandaranaike Airport (Colombo) from where it is a 2.5 hour drive to Galle. A train also runs from Colombo to Galle.
- Best time to visit - Galle is a year round destination with consistently warm temperatures (averaging around 28°C), however expect rains from May - November.
- If you plan to hire a car, we recommend you visit our online partner Rentalcars for the best prices.
Still not sure?
- Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Galle.
- Alternatively widen your search and check out all our recommendations in Sri Lanka.
- Or contact one of our friendly Gurus for advice.
Monthly Weather in Galle
Best Hotels in Galle
The Bungalow - Galle Fort Galle 6 rooms from £70Local exploring - Set within the walls of the fort this is a perfect spot to explore the historic town by foot (the beach is pretty close too!)Sights nearby - Explore Galle Fort (a UNESCO Heritage site)Great walks - Stroll the walls of the Fort at sunsetFull of character
A wonderfully restored bungalow in the heart of Galle Fort. Interiors keep their original charm but there's a fresh contemporary feel. Rooms benefit from large four posters and indulgent bathrooms. A fantastic restaurant set in the atmospheric, high-ceilinged, dining hall is worthy of a trip alone. See More
The Fort Printers Galle Fort 13 rooms from £109Great walks - A sunrise or sunset walk around Galle Fort (2.5km in total) is a mustSights nearby - Galle Fort, Lighthouse, National Museum and other sites closebyDesigner - Uniquely designed interiors.Local markets - Good for local colour.Recommended by - I Escape, Tablet
Unassuming from the outside this bijou hotel has had some high profile guests. Behind the traditional facade it's all double height ceilings and modern chic style. Lunch and dinner are tailored to your preference. But with Galle town on your doorstep you have plenty of options. A design dream! See More
Wirdana Spa & Villas Galle (Boossa) 10 rooms from £117Total relaxation - A picturesque and tranquil spot complete with glorious spa, superb dining and impeccable serviceSurfing - Discover the sandy beaches of Sri Lanka’s south coast — perfect for paddling or surfingSights nearby - Venture to gorgeous Galle Fort for a day of shopping and exploringGreat walks - Stroll through the hotel’s 4.5 acre cinnamon plantationRecommended by - Tablet, I Escape
Fort Bazaar Galle 18 rooms from £152Local exploring - A property filled with history set within the walls of the old Galle fort.Cooking classes - Take a cookery lesson at The Church Street Social.Views - Great views from hotelDesigner - Uniquely designed interiors.Recommended by - I Escape, Mr & Mrs Smith
A painstakingly restored heritage home set in historic Galle. Chic design throughout reflects the property's Moorish roots with delicate detailing found in carefully placed tiles, mosaic cushions and pendant lamps. A luxury spa, pool and exemplary restaurant make this the ideal retreat. See More
Jetwing Lighthouse Galle (Dadella) 85 rooms from £161Families - With plenty of activities on sight and babysitting services this property is great for all agesFishing - Borrow a rod and tackle and you can go fishing right off the dockSights nearby - Nearby Galle Fort is a must visitSwimming Pool - Outdoor pool
The Sun House Galle 9 rooms from £192Romantic Break - Relax and unwind with your loved one in this idyllic property.Sights nearby - The Kataluwa Buddhist temple is hidden away in the jungle outside Galle.Great walks - Take a walking tour through Galle Fort.Swimming Pool - Outdoor garden poolRecommended by - I Escape, Great Small Hotels
This charmingly restored merchant's house has great hillside views. Exquisite bedrooms and suites in all-white-ethereality are the piece de resistance for any romantic. An intimate atmosphere with communal dining and lovely gardens. A hip hotel, with many accolades, ideal for completely unwinding. See More
Tamarind Hill Galle 12 rooms from £193Honeymoons - An indulgent and romantic honeymoon destination with in room massages and open air private dining experiencesGreat walks - Wander the many nature trails that span mountains, rainforests, reservoirs and cultural heritage sitesCooking classes - The hotel offers on site cookery demonstrations- learn to whip up your favourites from the menuKayaking - Grab a kayak and head off to explore the Madhu River, a truly remarkable experience
A wonderfully nostalgic 5 star hotel on the outskirts of Galle. The beautifully restored property offers luxurious colonial style suites, lush green gardens, a pool and a fantastic spa. The restaurant serves a mix of traditional and international cuisine and the elegant bar is not to be missed! See More
Galle Fort Hotel Galle (Fort) 12 rooms from £156Sights nearby - Galle lighthouse, buddhist temples and museums are all located nearbyDiving - The beaches of Unawatuna and Weijia are a short drive awayGreat walks - Walk around the UNESCO World Heritage site of Galle FortRestrictions on children - All children above the age of three welcomeRecommended by - I Escape
Situated on the fringe of town this hotel is a tranquil hideaway. A centuries old property, decorated in a Dutch, Sri Lankan and colonial style, houses a lively restaurant great for mingling with fellow travellers. Loft suites are by far the best. A sun-dappled pool will leave you sun trapped! See More
Aditya Resort Galle (Devenigoda, Rathgama,) 16 rooms from £269Beach Life - Boasting its own stretch of private beach - ideal for watersports enthusiastsSwimming Pool - Outdoor poolSeaside - Ideal for a seaside holiday.On the beach - In front of the hotel.Recommended by - I Escape
A contemporary boutique hotel located on its own stretch of palm lined beach. Airy rooms feature splashes of pop colours, traditional furnishings and design quirks such as split levels and outdoor rain showers. An international lunch and dinner menu is available as are Ayurvedic spa treatments. See More
The Dutch House Galle 3 rooms from £424Hideaway - A chic boutique hotel with just four elegant and airy suites, in lush gardens filled with coconut trees and sun loungers.Great walks - Take a walking tour of the historic Galle Fort, especially a sunset stroll along the walls.Local markets - Visit the nearby villages and pick up some local delights in their markets.Diving - Head up further north for scuba diving at Unawatuna.Recommended by - I Escape
A peaceful 18th century mansion overlooking Galle. Elegant interiors decorated in rich ochres, antiques, and contemporary art with lovely gardens to unwind in. The adjoining hotel has the best restaurant in Galle. A tranquil and romantic base to explore Galle and its surrounding areas. See More
Amangalla Galle 30 rooms from £429Eco break - Recycled water, staff are local plus they organise monthly beach clean ups (and much more)! An enviromentally conscious hotelFamilies - Plenty of activities, baby sitting services, plus children under 12 stay freeRomantic Break - Charming suites, indulgent spa - a great couples breakCity Style - The number one address in the historic town of GalleRecommended by - Mr & Mrs Smith, I Escape
Galle's top address. Cast your worries aside as you are taken care of by the world renowned Aman group. Located in a handsome, white colonial building you'll find chic interiors and suites crammed with period pieces and beautiful bathrooms. Elegant dining and a sumptuous spa complete the picture. See More