Public Transportation in Panadura

Learning how to get around using public transportation in Panadura is an important step in adjusting to life in Panadura. In this article, we cover the local public transportation options.

Public transportation in Panadura is a vibrant mix of traditional and modern systems. The city, located in the Western Province of Sri Lanka, offers a variety of public transportation options including buses, trains, and three-wheelers, locally known as tuk-tuks. These systems are run by the Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) and private operators. For an expat living in Panadura, it is entirely possible to live comfortably without a car, relying on these public transportation systems and walking. However, the convenience and comfort of each mode of transport can vary.


The bus system in Panadura is the most common form of public transportation. Buses are run by both the SLTB and private operators, providing services to various parts of the city and beyond. The bus system is quite affordable, with fares starting from as low as 12 LKR (approximately 0.06 USD). However, buses can get crowded during peak hours, and the lack of a strict schedule can sometimes lead to long waiting times. Despite these challenges, buses are generally safe to use, even at night. Women traveling alone and children using buses to get to school are a common sight.


Trains are another popular mode of public transportation in Panadura. The city is served by the Coastal Line, which connects Panadura to Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, and other coastal towns. Trains are generally faster and less crowded than buses, making them a preferred choice for many commuters. The train station in Panadura is centrally located, making it easily accessible. Fares are also affordable, with a one-way ticket to Colombo costing around 60 LKR (approximately 0.30 USD). However, similar to buses, trains do not operate on a strict schedule, which can sometimes lead to delays.


Tuk-tuks, or three-wheelers, are a unique form of public transportation in Panadura. These small, motorized vehicles are a common sight on the city’s streets, offering a quick and convenient way to get around. Tuk-tuks can be hailed on the street or booked through mobile apps. Fares are usually negotiated with the driver before the journey, with a short ride typically costing around 100 LKR (approximately 0.50 USD). Tuk-tuks are generally safe to use, but it’s advisable to be cautious, especially at night, as some drivers may try to overcharge or take longer routes.

In conclusion, public transportation in Panadura, Sri Lanka is diverse and affordable, making it possible for an expat to live comfortably without a car. However, the lack of a strict schedule for buses and trains, and the need to negotiate fares with tuk-tuk drivers, can sometimes make the experience challenging. Despite these challenges, the city’s public transportation systems offer a unique way to experience the local culture and lifestyle.

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

Additional Information:

International Citizens Insurance

International Citizens Insurance
Get comparison quotes from our broker partner for Cigna, Allianz, IMG, GeoBlue and more.

Copyright 1997-2024 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal

LoginJoinPlease Login to Continue. New? Join today (it's free).
Since 1997, we've supported millions of people as they explore the world and share the adventures and challenges of living abroad.