Last updated: Feb 14, 2020

Contents

Overview | Train | Bus | Taxi

 

How To Get From Colombo to Negombo?

Negombo is a coastal city located just about an hour north of the capital Colombo. The city’s highlights remain to be the Dutch Fort and Dutch Canal, even after over 200 years since its colonization. Two kilometers north of town, you will find a strip of beachside resorts that is much more laidback than that of Colombo’s.

As Negombo is very easy to reach from the capital, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to spend a day or two in this resort town.

You have 3 choices when travelling the 40km distance from Colombo to Negombo. You can take the train for 1.5 hours, the bus for 1.5 to 2 hours, or a taxi for 1 hour. Fares range between $0.50 to $27.

The train is the most scenic option to reach Negombo from Colombo. Reserved seats are not available, but no need to worry about the train being full as long as you travel on off-peak hours. You can get a 2nd class seat for $0.50 and the journey takes about 1.5 hours.

The bus is another cheap option, but less scenic. A ticket for a local airconditioned bus costs $0.70. Local buses bound for Negombo depart from the Colombo Central Bus Stand every 20 minutes and take about the same time as the train.

If you are travelling with a group, a taxi is the most hassle-free option. A taxi will take you door-to-door for $27, and you can split the cost among 3 or 4 persons. Travel time is about 1 hour.

Transport ModeDurationCostsAvailability
Train1.5 hours80 Rs ($0.50)Read article for info
Bus1.5 hours120 Rs ($0.70)Read article for info
Taxi1 hour4,900 Rs ($27)Book a taxi

View itinerary from Colombo to Negombo

Train

Colombo to Negombo by Train


Duration: 1.5 hours
Costs: 80 Rs ($0.50)

As far as we know, only 2nd class and 3rd class trains operate from Colombo to Negombo. The good thing is it’s just a short 1.5-hour ride, so the seats should still be comfortable enough.

Most of the trains operating this route are commuter trains, so reserved seats are not available. A tip, travel on an off-peak hour to ensure a seat. If you take this train at the same time locals get to and from work, it’s going to be really crowded. The first train from Colombo to Negombo departs at 04:00 and the last train leaves at 20:20. You can check out the full schedule here.

Tickets are very affordable at 80 Rs ($0.50) for a 2nd class seat and 45 Rs ($0.30) for a 3rd class seat. You can buy your tickets at the train station on the day of your journey.

 

Bus icon

Colombo to Negombo by Bus


Duration: 1.5 hours
Costs: 120 Rs ($0.70)

If you don’t want to take the risk of missing a seat in the train from from Colombo to Negombo, the bus is another option. The ride will not be as scenic as the train, but it will get you to your destination with a good level of comfort.

We suggest that you take an airconditioned bus as they are more comfortable and faster than ordinary buses. They depart from Colombo Central Bus Stand every 20 mins and a ticket costs 120 Rs ($0.70).

Ordinary buses are also available for 56 Rs ($0.30), but we don’t recommend them as they make a lot of stops and travel time can take more than 2 hours.

Taxi

Colombo to Negombo by Taxi


Duration: 1 hour
Costs: 4,900 Rs ($27)

Travelling with a group? You can get a 3-seater taxi for 4,900 Rs ($27). It is not near as cheap as taking the train or the bus, but it will bring you straight to your hotel’s doorstep in Negombo.

Vans are also available for bigger groups for 6,000 Rs ($33). A van can fit up to 8 persons.

When booking a taxi in Sri Lanka, you can hail one from the street, ask your agency to find one for you, or book a taxi online through the link below.

Reserve a Taxi

There is also an option to book a car through Uber, which is widely used in Colombo.

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