The Floating Market

Located in the commercial hub of Colombo 1, the Floating Market, reminiscent to that of Thailand and Vietnam, has become a space for interesting commerce and social activity due to its serene naturist design amongst the towering concrete buildings. Just opposite the busy markets of Pettah, this unique complex serves as the first floating market in Sri Lanka as well, making the market place all the more special.

Best Known For

  • The Floating Market is best known for being a market place that engages in a variety of commerce, ranging from your everyday grocery needs to apparel and electronics, making it more like a mini mall, albeit with bargain prices.
  • The market complex is also known for its relatively calm atmosphere due to its naturist design that allows the weary traveler to take a well-deserved break in the open air food court, basking in an elegant view of the Beira Lake. Why not treat yourself and your buddies to some of the many delicious refreshments and snacks on offer too?

Interesting Facts

  • The Floating Market has its beginnings in 2014, when the local government, in the name of urban development in Colombo, attempted to give more market opportunities for sellers, in order to reduce the congestion of the older Manning Markets.
  • This proved to be a great undertaking as the engineering units of the Sri Lankan Army attempted to transform a part of an industrial canal into a major commercial complex.
  • The end result being the beautification of the urban jungle of Colombo, along with providing a great livelihood for many local businesses, while also attracting a great number of tourists as well.

Times, Seasons and Tips

  • The Floating Market is opened throughout the year, and experiences a never ending supply of commercial and social activity, making the season last throughout the year as well.
  • The market complex is normally opened from 8.00am - 12.00am, however, each stall operates on its own times.
  • Make sure you carry cash with small currency notes, like LKR 20s, LKR 50s and LKR 100s since many of the stalls do not accept credit or debit cards.
  • Always keep your valuables close to you as the market can become quite crowded and they can be misplaced or stolen.
  • It is possible to bargain with the shopkeepers, however, it is best to go with a local guide or friend to help you make the most out of it.

All in all, the Floating Market serves as an interesting and unique place to witness the sights and sounds of Colombo’s commercial hub while taking in the architectural setting of the complex.

Title image by: KNOWSL


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