Tripin 2019 - page 78

– the islands are dry and fairly
barren, with little opportunity to
take shade.
You can cover most of the islands
in a day and it makes sense to do
a loop (Mandaitivu – Pungudutivu
– Nainativu – Karainagar – Jaffna).
Delft (Neduntheevu) is only
accessible by an hour-long early
morning ferry ride and therefore
needs a whole day itself to visit.
The landscape is beautiful
and although there are some
interesting sights to visit, the
journey itself is the real show
here. There are a huge number of
shelled-out houses destroyed in
the war; the fighting was ferocious
here and there is still plenty
of rebuilding to be done. The
surrounding water is fairly shallow
and glows a brilliant shade of
shimmering blue.
Highlights include the Hindu
temple at Nainativu (to access
you need to catch a short ferry
operated by the navy and packed
with pilgrims), Kayts town (great
spot for lunch) and Casuarina
Beach (unwind with an afternoon
swim here on the way back).
After returning to Jaffna and
cooling off, head to the waterfront
precinct to catch the last of the
afternoon sun. The Jaffna library
(containing ancient, irreplaceable
tamil manuscripts) was burnt down
in the early 1980’s in what was the
catalysts for the brutal civil war. It
is open to visitors after 4:30pm,
though only the common areas are
accessible so there isn’t much to
On the other hand, the nearby
Jaffna fort is enormous. You access
it from the southern end near the
stadium; there are a number of ice-
cream vans at the front gate, which
is handy! The fort was built by the
Portuguese, extended by the Dutch
and was the site of a number of
bloody sieges during the recent
civil war. You can explore the site
freely and the walk around the
ramparts is magnificent in
the twilight.
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