Idea #383 – Visiting the old city of Galle
Galle is a city situated on the southwest point of Sri Lanka, in 119 km from Colombo. Before the arrival of the Portuguese, the city is known at first under the name of Gimhathiththa. At the beginning of the XVIth, under the European domination, it becomes then the main port of the island. Galle reached the summit of its development in the XVIIIth century, after the island was incorporéé in the Dutch colonial empire. The arrival of the English people causes little by little its decline, and it eventually supplants by Colombo.
Galle remains a magnificent example of fortified city built by the Europeans in the South and the southeast of Asia, illustrating well the interactions between the European architectural styles and the south-Asian traditions. The city, the bigger fortress built in Asia by the European colonists, is protected by a dike built in 1729 and was preserved with few modifications. It is designed around a regular square plan, adapted to the relief, around the residence of commander, arsenal and powder magazine, the whole being enclosed by a line strengthened by 14 bastions. It is classified on the UNESCO world heritage list.
Where is it ?
Galle, South region, Sri Lanka