Once the chief port of Ceylon, Galle is a city rich in history and oozes colonial charm. It is heavily influenced by the Dutch who controlled the city during the 17th century. Galle has both old and new parts with the old dominated by the majestic Galle Fort which spans over 90 acres and is home to many churches, mosques, temples as well as both residential and commercial buildings. The old city is particularly charming and is one of the most well preserved colonial-era cities in Asia, one of the many quality’s which contributed to the city becoming a 'World Heritage Site' in 1988. Galle can easily be reached as a day trip from one of the south’s popular beach destinations such as Hikkaduwa or Unawatuna, however if time permits we really recommend staying at least a night or two within the walls of the fort.
FYI - Galle is not located directly on a beach, but it is an interesting town located within easy reach of many great beaches.