Sri Lanka Travel Tours

Colombo Restaurant Guide

Colombo Restaurant Guide

Sum up

As Sri Lanka’s commercial capital, Colombo boasts a wide range of cuisine from across the globe. Whilst the best restaurants in Colombo were once mostly limited to the larger hotels, in recent years an increasing number of independent restaurants and cafés offering Western, Asian and even Middle Eastern fare have sprung up in addition the smaller eateries serving traditional dishes in a simple setting, and now travellers are spoiled for choice whether they are tempted by local flavours or are seeking familiar favourites.

The adventurous among you may be inclined to sample Sri Lankan street food during your tour of the island, and there is no better place to do this than Colombo. The city is littered with small roadside shops known as kades where you can buy authentic local dishes including string hoppers, lamprais, biriyani and rice and curry, as well as a variety of spicy snacks known locally as short-eats. Go on our Colombo Street Food Walk for a more comprehensive insight into food in Colombo and to discover the city’s best street food spots, such as Galle Face Green where you can buy hot koththu roti and salty isso wade (prawn dumplings).

Those eager to see the local nightlife will delight in the variety of bars in Colombo, which range from traditional pubs showing international sport to stylish rooftop bars offering a tranquil outdoor setting and great views. Local musicians play live music at many bars throughout the week, and there are a number of karaoke spots where travellers can test out their own performance skills. See below for a selection of our favourite Colombo restaurants, bars and cafés. Our knowledgeable and friendly sales team will be happy to make further suggestions based on your personal preferences, and additional recommendations can be found in our comprehensive Booking Information.

Duration: N/A

Best Time: Year-round

Additional Information

Restaurants in Colombo

  • The Ministry of Crab – this restaurant, one of Top 50 Restaurants in Asia, is owned by Dharshan Munidasa and two famous cricketers Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara. A great experience where one can enjoy delicious crabs, prawn curries and no fuss dining (Dutch Hospital, Col 1, 0112 342 722)
  • Monsoon – located at the end of Park Street Mews, this stylish restaurant offers a range of dishes from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. (Park Street Mews, Col 1, 0112 302 449)
  • The Gallery Café – previously the studio of the architect, Geoffrey Bawa, this is one of the trendiest spots in town. Great atmosphere and great food (Alfred House Gardens, Col 3, 0112 582 162)
  • Rare at Residence – a twist on modern international cuisine with infusion of Sri Lankan flavours, each dish is an experience in itself (20 Park Street, Col 2, 0115 673 000)
  • Nihonbashi – fantastic Japanese restaurant which has sealed its spot on the Top 50 Restaurants in Asia list (No. 11 Galle Face Terrace, Col 3, 0112 323 847)
  • Upalis – a wide range of traditional dishes are on offer, and diners can enjoy beautiful views of Vihara Maha Devi Park and the iconic Town Hall (65 CWW Kannangara Mawatha, Col 7, 0112 695 812
  • Lagoon – good for seafood. You can choose from a mini market-style selection of fish, prawns, crabs and lobster and have them cooked to your preference (Cinnamon Grand Hotel, Col 3, 0112 497 371)
  • Nuga Gama – a traditional village setting in the middle of the city. This is a good place to have Sri Lankan rice and curry although it is outside, therefore it is better to dine here in the evening (Cinnamon Grand Hotel, Col 3, 0112 582 162)
  • Kaema Sutra – contemporary Sri Lankan cuisine in the heart of Colombo (4th floor, Shangri-La Hotel, Col 1, 0117 888 288)
  • Shanmuga’s – specialises in vegetarian Indian dishes (53/3 Ramakrishna Road, Col 6, 0112 361 384)
  • The Bavarian Restaurant & Bar – hearty, meaty and delicious German dishes at reasonable prices (Galle Face Court, Col 3, 0112 421 577)

Cafés in Colombo

  • Barefoot Café – an atmospheric lunch spot serving salads, sandwiches and quiches. There is also a good specials board with other dishes. Go on Sunday afternoon to see their live jazz (706 Galle Road, Col 3, 0112 300 133)
  • Seed Café – all day breakfast and light lunch dishes with great vegan options (60 Horton Place, Col 7, 0776 209 087)
  • Kumbuk Café  – healthy salads, fresh juices and interesting sandwiches with a local twist (Independence Avenue, Col 7, 0112 685 310)
  • Park Street Mews – a laid-back café atmosphere in the daytime. Good for lunch (50/1 Park Street, Col 3, 0112 300 133)
  • Black Cat Café – generous portions, great vegan options and proper coffee in an artsy setting (11 Wijerama Mawatha, Col 7, 0112 675 111)

Bars in Colombo

  • The Veranda – Galle Face Hotel’s sea-facing veranda is the best spot for a predinner sundowner. Those who enjoy a pub atmosphere will enjoy nearby In… on the Green where you can watch sport whilst listening to great live music (2 Galle Road, Col 3, 0112 541 010)
  • Botanik Rooftop Bistro & Bar – Botanik serves contemporary bistro style food with slow cooked meats, fresh seafood and handmade bread and pasta and is a trendy spot for a pre- / post-dinner drink (7 Hospital St, Col 1, 0766 445 888)
  • Ward 7 – Jetwing Seven’s rooftop bar offers fantastic sunset views of the city and an intimate, calm atmosphere (57 Ward Place, Col 7, 0112 550 200)
  • Cheers Pub – a great place to enjoy simple English pub grub and watch some live sport (Cinnamon Grand, 77 Galle Road, Col 3, 0112 437 437)

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