Best Restaurants In Colombo That Every Tourist Must Visit

By Stella Tessa

The vibrant capital of Sri Lanka, Colombo, is a mingling pot of various ethnicities and cuisines. Colombo is, without a doubt, the spot to be if you love food. The capital of Sri Lanka has become famous for its thriving culinary scene, which will surely satisfy your cravings and leave you pursuing more. The city is home to a variety of the most unique eating establishments, from classy colonial restaurants to low-cost cafes. The restaurants in Colombo offer a distinctive and memorable dining experience, catering to all tastes. The city's dining scene offers a wide range of flavors and cuisines, from traditional Sri Lankan curries to genuine Italian delicacies, Chinese and Thai dishes, and fresh seafood. 

Discover the 5 Best Restaurants in Colombo - Sri Lanka's Capital

Making a choice about where to indulge in the best culinary experiences can be difficult due to the abundance of food choices available. These well-known restaurants are a must-see for both traditional Sri Lankan cuisine and finding new flavors In this article, we'll take you on a culinary tour of top restaurants in Colombo for foodies. Get ready to enjoy mouthwatering dishes that will leave you wanting more.

Ministry of Crab

Ministry of Crab has earned a reputation for being one of the best seafood restaurants in Colombo, serving up a delectable range of crab dishes prepared to perfection. The restaurant's interior is sleek and modern, with striking wooden accents and contemporary artwork adorning the walls. The ambiance is warm and inviting, making it the perfect spot for a romantic dinner or a special occasion.

Sri Lanka's treasured seafood, especially its world-famous crab, is highlighted on the menu at this fantastic restaurant. A variety of mouthwatering flavors that will leave you wanting more are produced by the crab dishes, which are made with the freshest ingredients and a special blend of seasonings. With its spicy sauce and tender, succulent crab flesh, the chili crab stands out in particular. It has received numerous awards for its commitment to sustainable and ethical procurement, including a place on the list of Asia's 50 Best Restaurants.

This seafood restaurant stands out for its dedication to ecology. The chefs use every component of the crab to reduce waste at the restaurant, which only employs crab that is sustainably caught. 

Ministry of Crab is a must-visit restaurant in Colombo for seafood lovers and those who appreciate fine dining. With its unique and innovative approach to Sri Lankan cuisine, coupled with its chic ambiance and commitment to sustainability, it's no wonder that the Ministry of Crab is one of the most popular and highly-regarded restaurants in the city.

Scenic evening view of the port with sailboats of the restaurant in Colombo

Scenic evening view of the port with sailboats of the restaurant in Colombo

Nuga Gama 

Nuga Gama is a hidden gem nestled within the bustling city of Colombo. This outdoor restaurant transports you back in time to a traditional Sri Lankan village, complete with thatched roofs, mud walls, and clay utensils. As you enter, the aroma of spices and herbs from the open kitchen tantalizes your senses, setting the stage for a delightful culinary journey.

The menu at Nuga Gama offers a wide variety of authentic Sri Lankan dishes, each prepared using age-old recipes and techniques that have been passed down for generations. From crispy hoppers and soft string hoppers to aromatic crab curry, the food here is a true representation of Sri Lanka's rich culinary heritage.

The ambiance at Nuga Gama is what truly sets it apart from other restaurants in Colombo. The serene and tranquil surroundings, coupled with the friendly staff and warm hospitality, make for an unforgettable dining experience. It's the perfect place to unwind and enjoy a quiet evening with loved ones or to celebrate a special occasion.

Nuga Gama should be at the top of your list if you're searching for a distinctive dining experience in Colombo. This restaurant is a must-visit for anyone who wants to genuinely experience the culture and cuisine of Sri Lanka, thanks to its rustic charm, delectable food, and traditional Sri Lankan hospitality.


Upali's is a hidden culinary treasure in Colombo that provides an unparalleled authentic Sri Lankan dining experience. A variety of mouthwatering traditional dishes, including fragrant rice and curry, piping hot kottu, and fluffy string hoppers, are offered on the restaurant's menu. These dishes are made using locally sourced ingredients and traditional recipes.

Step into Upali's and you'll be greeted by a casual and laid-back ambiance, perfect for a relaxed family dinner or a night out with friends. The décor is simple yet elegant, with warm lighting and comfortable seating, creating a cozy and inviting atmosphere.

One of the standout dishes at Upali's is their signature rice and curry, which features a colorful array of curries served alongside fluffy basmati rice. The flavors are bold and complex, with a perfect balance of spices and herbs that will leave you wanting more. Another must-try dish is the kottu, a Sri Lankan street food staple made from chopped roti bread, vegetables, and a choice of meat or seafood. The dish is cooked on a hot griddle with a variety of spices and seasonings, resulting in a fragrant and delicious meal that's sure to please.

Upali's also offers a range of vegetarian and vegan options, including a delicious jackfruit curry and a flavorful dhal curry. The restaurant's commitment to using fresh and local ingredients ensures that every dish is bursting with flavor and authenticity.

Abundant restaurants in Colombo and boutiques in this vibrant downtown area

Abundant restaurants in Colombo and boutiques in this vibrant downtown area

The Lagoon

The Lagoon at the Cinnamon Grand Hotel is not just another seafood restaurant in Colombo, it's a one-of-a-kind dining experience. As you step inside, you'll be amazed by the restaurant's unique setup, which resembles an underwater aquarium. The tanks on display hold an array of fresh seafood, including lobsters, prawns, and various types of fish.

The Lagoon's menu offers a wide variety of seafood meals to suit every preference. The Lagoon offers a variety of shellfish options, whether you like your fish perfectly grilled, steamed, or fried. The lobster thermidor, one of their signature dishes, is a must-try for seafood fans.

The participatory experience that The Lagoon provides sets it apart from other seafood eateries. Visitors can choose their seafood by hand from tanks and observe as it is expertly prepared by trained chefs. The restaurant is the ideal option for a romantic dinner or a special occasion due to its elegant setting, attentive service, and mouthwatering food. At The Lagoon, you're not just enjoying a meal but a sensory experience that will leave you with unforgettable memories.

Green Cabin

With a history of more than 70 years in business, Green Cabin is a genuine Colombo institution. For a good cause, this well-known eatery is a favorite of both locals and visitors. There is a wide variety of traditional Sri Lankan food on the menu at Green Cabin, including scrumptious kottu roti, fluffy hoppers, and aromatic curries. The flavors are strong and genuine, and the quantities are large. Wooden tables and chairs are present, and there is a busy, lively ambiance. The ambiance is understated and unassuming. The ideal location to sample the tastes of Sri Lanka is Green Cabin, whether you're looking for a quick snack or a leisurely dinner.

Green Cabin is a genuine Colombo institution with a history of more than 70 years

Green Cabin is a genuine Colombo institution with a history of more than 70 years

Green Cabin is a culinary institution that has been tantalizing the taste buds of Colombo's foodies for over seven decades. As one of the city's most beloved restaurants, Green Cabin is famous for its mouthwatering Sri Lankan cuisine, made using authentic recipes that have been passed down through generations. Whether you're in the mood for a bowl of classic rice and curry, crispy hoppers, or savory kottu, Green Cabin has got you covered. The atmosphere is warm and inviting with a touch of vintage charm, making it the perfect place to unwind with friends and family over a delicious meal. For an unforgettable culinary journey through the flavors of Sri Lanka, a visit to Green Cabin is a must.

A mini guide About Restaurants In Colombo for travelers

Some frequently asked questions for visitors when join in meals at restaurants in Colombo!

Can I find international cuisine in Sri Lanka?

Yes, Sri Lanka is home to a variety of international cuisine, including Chinese, Indian, and Italian.

Some popular Sri Lankan beverages include tea, coffee, and king coconut water.

Are there any etiquette rules to follow while dining at a Sri Lankan restaurant?

It is customary to remove shoes before entering a Sri Lankan home or restaurant, and it is considered impolite to waste food.

Are there vegetarian options available at Sri Lankan restaurants?

Yes, many Sri Lankan restaurants offer vegetarian options, including lentil curries and vegetable stir-fries.

Which Sri Lankan dishes must one try?

Some traditional Sri Lankan delicacies that you should definitely try include, Rice and curry, Kiribath (Milk Rice), Watalappan, Idiyappa (String Hoppers), Hoppers, Isso Vadai, Samosa, and more.

To enjoy rooftop drinking and drinking experiences, you can pick from the best options such as Botanik Rooftop Bistro & Bar, CÉ LA VI Colombo, Ward7 at Jetwing Colombo Seven, ON14 Rooftop Bar & Lounge, Cloud Café, and Vu Resto-Bar.

Sri Lanka is a vibrant and exciting restaurant in Colombo for food lovers, with a colorful and diverse culinary scene. Fortunately, Sri Lanka Immigration Services offers an easy and convenient way for visitors to apply for a visa and travel health insurance before their trip to Sri Lanka. Their online platform offers several services, including extra services, travel SIM cards, and car pick-up services to make the visitors' experience hassle-free.

For those who need to obtain a visa, Sri Lanka Immigration Services offers an e-Visa/ETA for tourist, business, and transit purposes. The process is simple and can be completed entirely online, saving visitors time and hassle. With a visa in hand, visitors can enjoy all that Sri Lanka has to offer without worrying about their legal status.

Additionally, Sri Lanka Immigration Services offers travel health insurance, which is mandatory for all visitors. The insurance covers medical expenses, emergency medical evacuation, and other unforeseen circumstances. With this insurance, visitors can enjoy peace of mind knowing that they are protected against any unexpected medical costs that may arise during their trip.

Moreover, Sri Lanka Immigration Services' website is user-friendly, and their customer support is responsive and helpful. The platform provides step-by-step guidance, making it easy for visitors to apply for a visa and travel health insurance. They also have a blog section that provides helpful information on travel-related topics, making it a one-stop shop for all things related to traveling to Sri Lanka.

Once you're planning a trip to Sri Lanka, it's essential to obtain a visa and travel health insurance ahead of time. Sri Lanka Immigration Services is a reliable and efficient way to prepare for your trip. Their online platform offers various services to make your experience stress-free and enjoyable. So, visit their website today and start planning your adventure in Sri Lanka with ease!

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