Opened to the public in 1986, the Galle National Museum is located in one of the oldest remaining Dutch buildings; a single-storied colonnade within the Galle Fort. Constructed in 1656, it was once the commissariat store for the Dutch garrison. Renovated by the Department of National Museums, three galleries hold a carefully curated collection of exhibits from the Portuguese, Dutch and consequently British occupation during colonial times.
One can take in displays showcasing cottage industries that came into being during the bygone era and which still prevail to this day; these include crafting jewellery from tortoiseshell and the weaving of Beeralu lace first introduced by the Portuguese.
The second gallery of the Galle museum contains an assortment of Dutch period furniture along with weaponry. The last and final gallery titled “Sri Lanka China Friends Gallery”, inaugurated in September 2013, features historical and archaeological evidence of trade which existed between the island and imperial China during ancient times.