Pettah Floating Market, Colombo

1.9
#303 of 619 in Things to do in Colombo
The Pettah Floating Markets are located on Bastian Mawatha in Pettah, a neighborhood in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and consist of 92 trade stalls, with a number of the stalls established on boats on Beira Lake. The floating market serves as a tourist attraction selling local produce and local handicraft.
The development of the floating market and beautification works were carried out by the Urban Development Authority (UDA) at a cost of Rs. 150 million. Engineering units from the Sri Lanka Army in collaboration with the Urban Development Authority transformed Bastian Street, the street linking the Central Bus Stand in Pettah and the Colombo Fort railway station, into a green environment. The Sri Lanka Navy rehabilitated the polluted canal running alongside Bastian Street. The unique simple architecture of the stalls along the canal, designed by Thushari Kariyawasam, with grey cemented floors and minimalistic décor, tries to reflect the calm and undisturbed water of lake.
The markets were officially opened by the Minister of Health, Maithripala Sirisena, on 25 August 2014.
One of the objectives of the development was to relocate unlicensed street vendors off the footpaths, particularly in congested areas like the Pettah, where they had no facilities and were forcing pedestrians onto the road. Priority was given to those traders who were impacted by the redevelopment on Bastian Street. Businesses however have struggled at the floating markets due to high rents and low sales. Traders have also criticised the open nature of the stalls and boats, which restrict their ability to secure their goods overnight. The UDA has advised that it will be undertaking promotional campaigns and improving accessibility to the area in an attempt to improve visitations to the area.
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Pettah Floating Market Reviews

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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 2.5
115 reviews
Google
3.7
TripAdvisor
  • Visited on 22nd February 2020 Recommended place to visit , this market on a water front and with visibility of the Lotus Tower provides some good photo options. the shops sell very basic stuff and.....  more »
  • This is a pleasant enough place and there is room to stop and relax a little from the chaos. It just lacks something, but I'm not quite sure what it is, but there is little atmosphere and almost a...  more »
Google
  • This is the first place who travels to Colombo by bus from far away first see after landing at last stop. This place adds some beauty and somewhat attraction for tourists also. There are few shops with colorful clothes and abstract designs. These are actually uncommon and comfort ware. The prices are also very cheap. There are also few restaurants with food items and with somewhat good quality than others around main street. Rather than walking around populated, tiny, too hot streets next to this this is somewhat good to pass some time. After a long bus ride and before departing to the next location or if there is more time left for the bus or to the train can pass some time here by grabbing a quick snack, cool drink or a smoke and safety wise also better than other streets.
  • A nice place to roam, chat and dine. But no. of shops slowly went down due to less business. This is a place built properly but not to be maintained well. A good business plan can bring this to a marvelous tourist attraction.

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