The Palmira tree (Borassus Flabellifor) symbolizes the North. Despite of the dry climate throughout the year, Palmira trees are grown here like coconut tree in other areas, all parts of this Palmira tree are used for some purpose.
Jaffna is Peninsula surrounded by the Indian Ocean. It consists of six major Islands. Kaytz, Karaithiew, Nainathew, Mandathiew, Punkuduthiew, Delft and few smaller islands. Out of these 6 Islands Kaytz, Mandathiew and Punkuduthiew are joined each other and with the Peninsula by long causeways. Boat services are available from Punkuduthiew to Nainethiew and Delft. Karaithiew Island is connected to the main island by a cause way Karainager town is there and the popular beach Casurina is in the North.
This is the beach at Karainager, 20km away from Jaffna Town. It is called Casurina since the spread of Casurina tress along the beach. Most of the visitors spend time here having a sea bath and swim, one can walk a long way into the water as the current is low and the waves are gentle.
NALLUR KOVIL (HINDU TEMPLE)
The most venerable place in Jaffna for Hindu devotees. It is characterized by a golden arch and beautiful gopuram. The original Temple built in 1450 was destroyed by Portuguese and the present Kovil was Mudliyer Mappama who was a Dutch service. This Kovil is the most visited place in Jaffna by both local and foreign tourists. The most important festival in Jaffna is held here including a procession along the roads.
Another place mostly visited by the tourists. This place is renowned for its fresh water spring. The marvel here is you get fresh water almost few meters away from the beach. People believe that the spring water here contains healing power and it improves the health.
Naguleshwaram Kovil is nearby in the vicinity and famous for its oid gopuram decorated with some very unusual theme. One other important feature that you could find in the vicinity is the beautiful corals on the sea shore.
KADURUGODA ANCIENT BUDDHIST TEMPLE
This is called as Katarodai; you can see many ruins of Buddhists in this area. Among them 50 mini stupas in different sizes is the prominent feature. These stupas are made out of lime stones .The status, guard stones, pillars etc… Which have been unearthed during the archeological excavations are now displayed at the museum.
It is a large square well of an unknown depth. This beautiful natural well has a never ending fresh water supply. It is said to be bottomless and with salt water in its depth is an evidence to its connection to the sea. By tradition this was formed by an arrow shot by Hanuman to satisfy the thirst of Rama.
This beautiful island well known for its Buddhist Temple called Nagadeepa Raja Maha Viharaya; A per the chronicles Buddha visited this place to settle a war between two Naga (Cobra) Kings Mahodara & Chulodara over a gem-studded throne. Naga is a tribe who were mainly the traders.
You have to hire a boat from the Jetty of Kaytz to reach Ngadeepa and it about 20 minutes boat ride across the sea. Since the distance from Jaffna to Nagadeepa is about 35km, it may take at least half a day visit there. The journey along the long causeway from Jaffna to Kaytz
Through the shallow sea is a fantastic unforgettable experience.
The other famous place in this island is the Naga Pooshani Ambal Temple, which is mostly visited by the followers of Goddess Ambal Devi. They worship here seeking blessings. Carrying new born babies here for blessings is a famous tradition here.
Dambakola Patuna is an ancient sea port which was used even before the pre Christian times. The sapling of sacred Boo Tree was brought from India to Sri Lanka via this port in the 3rd century BC. After that the Bo Tree was ceremoniously carried to Anuradhapura. The ancient capital and planted there. A temple was built there in Dambakola Patuna by king Devanampiyattissa to commemorate the arrival of the sapling of sacred Bo Tree.
This is the second largest Dutch Fort in Sri Lanka. Portuguese first surrendered Jaffna in in 1543, and later they built this fort in 1619 to established their power & control. They had mostly used lime stones and corral stones to make the walls of this huge fort. This square shape fort had four bastions adequate cannon have been placed there; it was built in the South corner of Jaffna Peninsula., and connected to the Jaffna Lagoon.
Once captured this Fort by the Dutch in latter part of the 17th century, they have rebuilt this Fort in a difference shape. They have created five bastions in the inner rampart wall. They have created a secret road to enter the bastions of the inner rampart by making a tunnel through the water moat.
The is the most northerly point of Sri Lanka and it faces the Bay of Bengal. A lighthouse is there to mark this point. This distance from most southerly point Dondra to here is 435 kms.
This is located in a small islet in between Kaytz and Karithiew Island. This small islet is about four acres and originally the rampart of the Fort was whole over the islet, in the sense this was truly a guard point built by the Portuguese and used for more than hundred years, but later captured by the Dutch in 1658.
Among the islands in Jaffna area .This Island is the second biggest Island after Kaytz. The extent of this island is about 48 square kilometers and the length is nearly 9 kilometers. When considering the island with human settlement, this is the most remote island from Jaffna.
You have to go on one hour boat ride to reach there.
This island has been named by the Portuguese as “Aifa Daas Vaccas”. Then Dutch has renamed as “Delft” is a beautiful city in Netherland and they have used the same name may be because of the same geographical features can be seen here.
This island is rich with many archeological sites such as, Buddhist ruins including stupas ,ruins of Hindu Temples, Migarmen Dutch Fort, old Dutch hospital, Queens Tower (surveyor’s Tower), Pigeon Cage made using lime stone, old Burial Ground, Bio Bab Tree, Growing stone etc…
Almost all the people live here are Tamils, houses are very small but perimeter wells around such houses have been built by using lime stones. Which is a wonderful Architectural design, and unique to this area.