Colombo is the commercial capital and financial center of Sri Lanka. Colombo offers many interesting places to visit. Colombo is also a relatively easy city for the tourist to find his way around. The city blends together with old colonial type building, high-rise commercial buildings and hotels. Some of the finest structures built during the colonial times still preserved in one part of the City. It has the lazy charm of the bygone era combined with the verve and vivaciousness of a modern city. Colombo is an ideal location to start the Sri Lanka sojourn. Colombo was ruled by the Portuguese, Dutch and British. When the Portuguese arrived in 1505, Colombo was spread round the bay, which was not more than three fathoms in depth where it was deepest. Portuguese were compelled to reinforce the garrison to resist attacks by Mayadunne and Vidiya Bandara,then native rulers of the Ceylon. The Portuguese occupation of Colombo ended with the siege of 1656 when the Dutch captured the city. The Dutch occupied Colombo and other parts of the coastal Ceylon from 1656 to 1796, a period of 140 years. The British captured Colombo in 1796 but it was not until 1815 that it became the capital city of the whole island. Colombo is filled with shopping malls, airline offices bazaars and interesting tourist attractions such as National Museum, Galle Face Green, Beira Lake, Cargills & Millers building, Independence Square, Viharamahadevi Park, Colombo Fort, Pettah bazaar, Churches, Mosques and Temples of Colombo City, Railway museum and Mount Lavinia beach.
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