Top 10 attractions to explore in Eastern Province
The Eastern Province is the second largest province in Sri Lanka, and its capital is Trincomalee, located on the east side of the region. The province covers most of the coastline on the east coast, and its area is 9,996 km2 which is 15.2% of the Sri Lankan landmass. Its major cities are Kalmunai, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Kattankudy, Eravur, and Ampara, with a population of 1,551,381 in 2012. And, it is the most diverse province ethnically and religiously in the country.
It is known locally as Arugam Kudah, a bay situated on the Indian Ocean, and a historic village of the ancient Batticaloa Territory. The bay is located 117 km south from Batticaloa. Arugam Kudah translation to Tamil is the Bay of Cynodon dactylon(Bermuda Grass). Arugam Bay attracts tourists through surf tourism, thanks to several quality local beaches, lagoons, historic temples, and the nearby Kumana National Park.
Fort Fredrick is located in Trincomalee, Eastern Province, Sri Lanka and built by the Portuguese in 1624 on Swami Rock-Konamamalai near Koneswaram temple. The Fort named Triquillimale was dismantled and rebuilt by the Dutch in 1665 and renamed as Fort Fredrick.
Gal Oya National Park, established in 1954 serves as the main catchment area to collecting water for Senanayake Samudraya, the largest lake in Sri Lanka. An important feature of the Gal Oya National Park is its elephant herd that can be seen throughout the year.
Kumana National Park is famous for its avifauna, especially its large flocks of seasonal waterfowl and wading birds. The park lies 391 km southeast from Colombo on the southeastern coast and was closed from 1985 to March 2003 because of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam attacks. It was also affected by the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004.
Marble Beach or Marble Bay Beach, is a beautiful golden beach located in the north of Sri Lanka at the Marble Bay within the Trincomalee’s natural harbor area. It is best to go on weekdays to avoid crowdedness. When the day is bright and the sea is calm, you can see the surface shining like marble and that’s how the name was derived.
Pasikuda means the green algae bay and is located in the Eastern seaside of Sri Lanka around 35 kilometers from Batticaloa. The beach comes with turquoise blue waters, along with many activities such as kite surfing, boogie boarding to surfing and sailing across in a canoe. It has Coconut palms and Borassus adorn the shores. Sunscreen and a beach brimmed hat are recommended along with lots of liquid, to be hydrated.
Pigeon Island National Park lies 1 km off the coast of Nilaveli in Eastern Province, containing a total area of 471.429 hectares. The island's name came from the rock pigeon which colonized it. The park includes some of the best remaining coral reefs of Sri Lanka. This place in the 17th century used as a shooting range during the colonial era. Pigeon Island was one of the several protected areas affected by the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004.
The Hindu temple complex from medieval time in Trincomalee, a Hindu religious pilgrimage destination in Eastern Province, Sri Lanka. The Earliest records say it was constructed back in 6th century BC. However, it underwent restorations, and the last one was in the 1950s due to the destruction from colonial religious attacks between 1622 and 1624.
A British military graveyard in Trincomalee for British Empire soldiers from World War II. The place is located on Trincomalee–Nilaveli Road, around 6 km north Trincomalee. It is one of six Commonwealth war graveyards in Sri Lanka and managed by the Ministry of Defense in Sri Lankan on behalf of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
Map of attractions in Eastern Province