Colombo montage- update 2018.png
Top row: The Cargills Ceylon building, and the Seema Malakaya of the Gangaramaya Temple
Row 2: The Lotus Tower, Bank of Ceylon tower and WTC, and Independence Square
Row 3: Nelum Pokuna and the Old Parliament
Bottom: Skyline of the CBD, looking north
Official seal of Colombo
Colombo is located in Colombo District
Colombo is located in Sri Lanka
Colombo is located in Asia
Coordinates: 6°56′04″N 79°50′34″E / 6°56′04″N 79°50′34″E / 6.93444; 79.84278

Colombo (/; Sinhalese: කොළඹ, translit. Kolamba, pronounced [ˈkəlɐmbɞ]; Tamil: கொழும்பு, translit. Koḻumpu, pronounced [koɻumbu]) is the commercial capital[3] and largest city of Sri Lanka. According to the Brookings Institution, Colombo metropolitan area has a population of 5.6 million,[4][5][6][7] and 752,993[2] in the city proper. It is the financial centre of the island and a popular tourist destination.[8] It is located on the west coast of the island and adjacent to the Greater Colombo area which includes Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, the legislative capital of Sri Lanka and Dehiwala-Mount Lavinia. Colombo is often referred to as the capital since Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte is within the urban area of, and a suburb of, Colombo. It is also the administrative capital of the Western Province and the district capital of Colombo District. Colombo is a busy and vibrant place with a mixture of modern life and colonial buildings and ruins.[9] It was the legislative capital of Sri Lanka until 1982.

Due to its large harbour and its strategic position along the East-West sea trade routes, Colombo was known to ancient traders 2,000 years ago. It was made the capital of the island when Sri Lanka was ceded to the British Empire in 1815,[10] and its status as capital was retained when the nation became independent in 1948. In 1978, when administrative functions were moved to Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, Colombo was designated as the commercial capital of Sri Lanka.

Like many cities, Colombo's urban area extends well beyond the boundaries of a single local authority, encompassing other municipal and urban councils such as Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte Municipal Council, Dehiwala Mount Lavinia Municipal Council, Kolonnawa Urban Council, Kaduwela Municipal Council and Kotikawatte Mulleriyawa Pradeshiya Sabha. The main city is home to a majority of Sri Lanka's corporate offices, restaurants and entertainment venues.[11] Famous landmarks in Colombo include Galle Face Green, Viharamahadevi Park, Beira Lake, Colombo Racecourse, Planetarium, University of Colombo, Mount Lavinia beach, Nelum Pokuna Theatre, Colombo Lotus Tower as well as the National Museum.


Coat of arms of Colombo from the Dutch Ceylon era, depicting a mango tree.

The name "Colombo", first introduced by the Portuguese in 1505, is believed to be derived from the classical Sinhalese name කොලොන් තොට Kolon thota, meaning "port on the river Kelani".[12]

Another belief is that the name is derived from the Sinhalese name කොල-අඹ-තොට Kola-amba-thota which means "Harbour with leafy mango trees".[11] This coincides with Robert Knox's history of the island while he was a prisoner in Kandy. He writes that, "On the West the City of Columbo, so called from a Tree the Natives call Ambo, (which bears the Mango-fruit) growing in that place; but this never bare fruit, but onely leaves, which in their Language is Cola and thence they called the Tree Colambo: which the Christians in honour of Columbus turned to Columbo."

The author of the oldest Sinhalese grammar, Sidatsangarava, written in the 13th century wrote about a category of words that exclusively belonged to early Sinhalese. It lists naramba (to see) and kolamba (ford or harbour) as belonging to an indigenous source. Kolamba may also be the source of the name of the commercial capital Colombo.[13][14]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Colombo
አማርኛ: ኮሎምቦ
العربية: كولمبو
asturianu: Colombu
Avañe'ẽ: Kolómbo
azərbaycanca: Kolombo
বাংলা: কলম্বো
Bân-lâm-gú: Colombo
башҡортса: Коломбо
беларуская: Каломба
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Каломба
български: Коломбо
བོད་ཡིག: ཁོ་ལུམ་པོ།
bosanski: Colombo
brezhoneg: Colombo
català: Colombo
čeština: Kolombo
chiShona: Colombo
Cymraeg: Colombo
dansk: Colombo
Deutsch: Colombo
ދިވެހިބަސް: ކޮޅުނބު
डोटेली: कोलम्बो
eesti: Colombo
Ελληνικά: Κολόμπο
español: Colombo
Esperanto: Kolombo (urbo)
euskara: Kolonbo
فارسی: کلمبو
Fiji Hindi: Colombo
français: Colombo
Gaeilge: Colombo
Gàidhlig: Colombo
galego: Colombo
ગુજરાતી: કોલંબો
한국어: 콜롬보
հայերեն: Կոլոմբո
हिन्दी: कोलंबो
hrvatski: Colombo
Ido: Colombo
Bahasa Indonesia: Kolombo
interlingua: Colombo
Interlingue: Colombo
Ирон: Коломбо
íslenska: Kólombó
עברית: קולומבו
ಕನ್ನಡ: ಕೊಲಂಬೊ
ქართული: კოლომბო
Kiswahili: Colombo
Kreyòl ayisyen: Kolonbo
latviešu: Kolombo
Lëtzebuergesch: Colombo
lietuvių: Kolombas
magyar: Colombo
मैथिली: कोलम्बो
македонски: Коломбо
Malagasy: Colombo
മലയാളം: കൊളംബോ
मराठी: कोलंबो
مازِرونی: کلمبو
Bahasa Melayu: Colombo
монгол: Коломбо
မြန်မာဘာသာ: ကိုလံဘိုမြို့
Nederlands: Colombo (stad)
नेपाली: कोलम्बो
日本語: コロンボ
norsk: Colombo
norsk nynorsk: Colombo
occitan: Colombo
ଓଡ଼ିଆ: କଲୋମ୍ବୋ
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Kolombo
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਕੋਲੰਬੋ
Papiamentu: Colombo
Piemontèis: Colombo (Sri Lanka)
polski: Kolombo
português: Colombo
română: Colombo
русский: Коломбо
संस्कृतम्: कोलम्बो
Scots: Colombo
sicilianu: Colombo
සිංහල: කොළඹ
Simple English: Colombo
سنڌي: ڪولمبو
slovenčina: Kolombo
slovenščina: Kolombo
ślůnski: Kolůmbo
Soomaaliga: Kolonbo
српски / srpski: Коломбо
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Colombo
suomi: Colombo
svenska: Colombo
Tagalog: Colombo
தமிழ்: கொழும்பு
తెలుగు: కొలంబో
тоҷикӣ: Коломбо
Türkçe: Kolombo
українська: Коломбо
اردو: کولمبو
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: كولومبو
vepsän kel’: Kolombo
Tiếng Việt: Colombo
Winaray: Colombo
粵語: 哥林堡
中文: 可倫坡