Batticaloa is a coastal town which sits at the eastern edge of the island, centrally south of Trincomalee and north of Arugam Bay. If you are searching for a Sri Lanka destination which will give you a sense of authentic living on the island, Batticaloa is an ideal destination. Here, fishing is the main industry and most people get around by bicycle. Hand-looming is another industry here, and is one of the oldest traditions in this region: you will be able to watch the vibrant threads being morphed into beautiful sarongs and saris at a factory, which is a mesmerizing experience. The Dutch Fort, though it has been battered by the sea for centuries, still makes for a splendid sight and offers an insight into Sri Lanka’s colonial past. You can also visit the lighthouse that has been around since 1913, and the surrounding sea is great for a dip. Head to Kallady Beach and marvel at the beautiful St. Mary’s Cathedral as well, along with a host of other churches and Hindu temples such as the Anipandi Sitivigniswara Alayar.
- Batticaloa’s local name is ‘Matakkalappu’ which is of Tamil origin and means ‘Muddy Swamp’.