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Situated on Sri Lanka’s east coast, the small city of Batticaloa was all but neglected by tourists until the country’s Civil War ended a few years ago. Fortunately for the region, that’s changing and valuable tourist dollars are flowing in.
Most people who visit Batticaloa go to see its historic fort, which I’ve previously discussed. The city is situated on the Indian Ocean, to which it is connected by a series of lagoons, and there are many great scenes to enjoy from the water.
Below are some scenes from the city’s waterfront, including of its harbor including fishermen bridges and the city’s lighthouses….
(Click on thumbnails to enlarge and right arrow to advance)
During my last trip to Sri Lanka, I spent some time visiting with my friend, Dottie, Sir Arthur C Clarke’s personal secretary. I got to know Dottie during my travels to Sri Lanka decades ago and we have kept up our friendship and correspondence over the years; it was nice to reconnect in person for a few days.
Dottie is a devout Roman Catholic and wanted to visit the Catholic churches in eastern Sri Lanka, which gave me the opportunity to see places and observe religious customs I otherwise might not have. One of these places was the Cathedral of St. Mary in the small city of Batticaloa, an old church dating to 1808.
The church is simple but nicely maintained. I …
Mahatma Gandhi Park (aka ‘Gandhi Park’) is a fairly new addition to the lagoon waterfront in the heart of Batticaloa town. Built to honor the great Indian leader, the golden statue of him is definitely designed to capture your attention.
The park is popular with visitors and locals alike and is a nice place to relax. While resting on one of the benches, look for fishermen in small canoes or enjoy one of Sri Lanka’s many beautiful sunsets.
(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)
My visit to Sri Lanka this past year provided my first opportunity to explore the east and southeastern coasts of the island. During prior visits, the area was “off limits” because of the decades-long Civil War disrupting the country (which fortunately has been resolved). The region around Batticaloa was a Tamil stronghold in their fight with the Sinhalese government. The region is decidedly more Hindu and Christian than other parts of the island I’ve visited.
Sri Lanka, because of it’s strategic location, has been in the cross-hairs of many colonial nations over the centuries. In modern recorded history this includes the Portuguese, Dutch and English, all of whom left their mark on the country. There were several dozen such old forts …