The Old Galle Dutch hospital also Known as the Old Dutch hospital is one of the oldest colonial buildings and one of the local cultural tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. Being built during the colonial era of the Dutch the building has now been renovated and restored and been transformed into a modern shopping and dining precinct preserving its architectural integrity.

Image by Amila Tennakoon via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)


The building was first built as a hospital which was used to treat Dutch seafarers. Later during the British reign, the building was converted into barracks and until independence, the building was used as the office of the Government agent who was the chief administrator of the district. After the independence, the building was used as a town hall until 2006.

The Architecture

The building reflects the 17th-century Dutch colonial architecture and was designed with tall collonaded verandas on both sides of the building floors. They have used coral stones for masonry work and floors were paved with granite stones the windows and the fanlights were glazed and bricks were used as the building materials.

The Restoration

In the year 2006, the deteriorated building with the aid of International Council on Monuments and Sites with funding from American Express and the World Monuments Fund started to undergo a complete restoration and the conservation. The restoration project of the building was completed in March 2011 and in 2014 the building was transformed into a shopping and dining precinct and was opened to the public on 20th September that year.

The Modern Building

The modern renovated Dutch hospital building stands tall preserving the ancient and magnificent architecture and it has become one of the tourist-friendly places in Sri Lanka. The shopping precinct houses a number cafes and boutique shops today; the Well Known Places blog recommends that the Dutch Hospital Shopping Precinct is a must visit place for all the tourists who visit Galle which is one of the most visited places in the world.


Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world. Google+