I used to take the bus. It was like six rupees from Battaramulla into Colombo, a bit more if you wanted to take the A/C | BO private bus back. I liked it while I was off-tempo, but once you get into the working beat its miserably crowded and slow. Then they started the one-way system and I didn’t understand where anything went anymore. Plus I started driving, which has its own level of suck, but a bit higher up the layer cake.
Where was I, anyways, Janith Leanage has resolved the understanding part, a bit. Colombo bus routes are just known. There are no posted schedules or maps. Janith, however, has done a simple map and posted it on Facebook. It’s actually quite enlightening.
You can orient yourself by the Galle Road running up and down. This is on a north/south orientation. I used to take the 177, green line straight east to Battaramulla. The 138 to Nugegoda is the other main bisector. As you can see, however, there are huge gaps in Colombo’s public transit. There will be walking, and it will be hot.
I still can’t imagine even mad dogs or englishmen casually taking the bus, even with such a map. Colombo is not a foreign country where any idiot can figure out the metro. First off, this map is not public, all you have to go by is the conductor shouting ‘Moratuwa, moratuwa’ or whatever. If you’re going to, say, Mount Lavinia, you need to know that Mount is between Galle Face and Moratuwa, no one will really tell you that.
Colombo is not a very user friendly town, but this map is usable. That’s a start.