Sri Lanka is fondly referred to as the pearl of the Indian Ocean – because it truly is a marvel. There are not just beaches as often hyped, but lots more to the little island. One of the lesser explored areas of Sri Lanka is the north. One of the main reasons for this is the civil war that prevailed in the country for over three decades. However, now all’s clear and well and there’s so much to see and learn about the north.
The main city in the north is Jaffna. An almost 7-hour drive from the capital, Jaffna can be accessed by road, there’s public transport freely available. There is also the famous train service Yaal Dhevi, which in itself is an interesting part in getting yourself to the north. Giving you a chance to meet various people along the way on the journey.
The Jaffna Sri Lanka weather can be very dry and hot so best is to go prepared except for when it is the monsoon season. With the tourism in Jaffna Sri Lanka getting on an upward spiral there has been an increase in the number of Jaffna Sri Lanka hotels.
There is a whole heap of hidden treasures in Jaffna to see and also there are quite a few things to do in Jaffna Sri Lanka. One of the key landmarks as well as a key religious monument in the city centre is the Nallur Kovil. The temple’s annual festival is one of the highlight events for the entire city. Devotees not only from Jaffna but also from across the world fly in for the festival.
Another interesting place to visit would be the Jaffna islands. Sri Lanka being an island itself there are little islets especially concentrated more in the northern region. One of the famous islands in the Delft island or Nedunthivu. Getting to Delft island can be by a Navy operated the ferry. There are quite a bit of ruins left behind from back in the day as well as the island is famous for its wild ponies that are free roaming.
Jaffna is home to a predominantly Hindu population and hence one can find it easy to explore some of the greatest treasures of Hinduism found in Sri Lanka. Another one of the noteworthy places in Jaffna to visit is the Keeri Malai temple. What makes the temple Naguleshwaram and the adjoining tank is that it is a natural spring right next to the sea. It has been made a bathing tank with only a wall separating the sea and the tank with the waters in the tank not being sea water but fresh water coming from beneath the ground.
If one’s to learn about the city then trying to be a local is important. One of the best places to mingle with the locals would be the markets. The Chunnakam Jaffna Sri Lanka market is a popular market in the city. This is a great place to observe the daily lives of the locals.
As much as exploring is all fun to find accommodation that is quite central, affordable and at the same time comfortable can be quite a task. Properties such as Yoho Til Jaffna have been recommended by past travellers for the above.
The cuisine in Jaffna itself can be quite different to the rest of the country. The flavours are much different from the ones in found elsewhere. One cannot leave Jaffna without having the famous broth – Kool or a Jaffna Crab curry!
Some of the other iconic landmarks in Jaffna to see would be the Jaffna fort, the public library, St. James Church as well as the Casuarina beach.