Jaffna Fort is a famous colonial-era building in Sri Lanka. It is situated near the coastal village called ‘Gurunagar in Jaffna. The building has more than 400 years of history, making it one of the best places you must visit during your trip to Northern Sri Lanka.



As we mentioned earlier, the Jaffna Fort is situated near Gurunagar village. The distance to the spot from Jaffna Bus Stand is 1.5km and from Jaffna Railway Station is 2km. Here is the Google Maps location of the destination:


History of Jaffna Fort

Jaffna Fort was initially built by Portugues under the Phillipe de Oliveira during the period of 1618–1625. The Portuguese captured the Jaffna at those times and ruled the entire lowland area of the island. Later, the Dutch captured the Jaffna fort from the Portuguese in 1658, which was led by Rijcklof Van Goens. Initially, the Portuguese building of the fort was not huge, and then the Dutch expanded it further.

The British captured the fort from the Dutch in 1795 and then remained under their control until they gave independence to Sri Lanka in 1948. During the Sri Lankan civil war from 1985 to 1995, there were a few battles. The Sri Lankan Army captured the Jaffna in 1995 from the LTTE rebels, then took control from now on. However, the war brought some serious damage to this fort.


More details about Jaffna Fort

When you are going inside the fort, you can see some buildings, including the Governor’s Residence, Queen’s House, Kruys Church, Garrison Parade Ground, Police Quarters, Hangman’s Tower, the Rampart, and the Moat. You can walk along the walls of the fort. By adding defensive triangles, the walls of the fort were constructed with a combination of mortar, bricks, soils, stones, and corals. As a whole, the fort covers more than 25 hectares of land.

Jaffna Fort is one of the best-preserved colonial ramparts in Sri Lanka. It is also considered the second-largest Dutch fort in the country, after the famous Galle Fort. However, it is massive. You can see a lot of trees inside the fort, which include benches under them. So, visitors sit down there and enjoy the surroundings leisurely. The breeze is cool, which always removes the surrounding hot weather.

The views from the bastions and rampart are so amazing. If you can visit at sunset, then you can capture some marvelous pictures. You can also easily identify the Jaffna lagoon and public library from here.


Opening Days, Times, and Tickets

You need to buy a ticket to enter the Jaffna Fort. It is 50 rupees for local adults and 4 USD for tourists. The premises are open daily from 7.30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. Most believe April to June is the perfect time to visit this lovely place.

There is a small museum and a small gift shop also available inside the fort.

So, finally, we request that you don’t miss this historical place during your trip to Jaffna.




(Cover Image Credit: Thilina Kaluthotage Photography )


Toddy Tapping in Sri Lanka

Toddy Tapping in Sri Lanka: A Traditional Industry Preserved by Skilled Tappers and Unique Locations

Toddy tapping is an age-old tradition in Sri Lanka that involves extracting sap from the inflorescence of the coconut palm tree, which is then fermented to produce toddy, a mildly alcoholic beverage. Toddy has been an important part of Sri Lankan culture and cuisine for centuries and is used in the preparation of various dishes and as a refreshing drink. Somebody called this beverage Thal Ra, Kithul Ra, or Pol Ra, according to the plant used for the process. 

Toddy tapping is an art that requires skilled tappers who are knowledgeable about the process. In Sri Lanka, many toddy tappers are from families that have been in the industry for generations, and they are experts in selecting the right coconut trees and extracting the sap with minimal damage to the trees. The toddy tappers use special tools such as the toddy tapping knife, coconut shells, and bamboo poles to extract the sap from the coconut tree.

Toddy Tapper will climb the coconut tree when the time is right. He then breaks the flower for three days, which begins the process.The tappers walk along two adjacent rows between two coconut trees. It appears to be a dangerous activity in which a mistake could cost him his life.

One of the unique aspects of toddy tapping in Sri Lanka is the different locations where it takes place. The majority of toddy tappers operate in the southern and western regions of the country, but there are also toddy tapping places in other parts of the country, such as the North Central, Eastern, and Northern regions. Each location has its own distinct flavor and aroma, influenced by factors such as soil composition, climate, and the age of the coconut tree.

Despite the traditional toddy tapping industry in Sri Lanka facing various challenges in the modern era, there are still many toddy tappers who are dedicated to preserving the tradition and maintaining the quality of their product. Many of them have formed cooperatives to help market their products and protect their interests. These cooperatives ensure that the toddy tappers receive fair prices for their products, and they also help to maintain the quality of the toddy by providing education and training on sustainable and eco-friendly practices.

(Image Credit: Petra Griffin from Facebook)

Diyaluma Ella – Second Highest Waterfall in the Country

Diyaluma Falls is the second highest waterfall in Sri Lanka with a height of 220m (720ft). It is considered the 361st highest waterfall on the globe. This is such a beautiful looking waterfall, and it is a must-visit place for any traveler.


There are two major ways to reach Diyaluma Falls. The first and major route through Beragala You can reach Beragala town via the Kandy to Colombo main road. From there, you can reach the destination by driving 24km. It is 6km away from Koslanda. The other route is via Bandarawela and Poonagala. You can use this route if you are starting your journey from Ella. The place is 35km away from Ella, a major tourist city. Normally, the tuk tuks take around 2 hours for the journey. However, you can see a scenic view of the surroundings on the Poonagala Route.

The view of the Diyaluma Falls is very nice when you observe it from the bottom. But the most famous place is its upper part.

Upper Diyaluma Waterfall

Upper Diyaluma

There is another small waterfall on the upper side, which is called “Upper Diyaluma’. Most travelers come to the Upper Diyaluma to observe an amazing view of the surroundings. There are a few small pools available for bathing on the upper side of the Diyaluma Falls. If you can run a drone from the Upper Diyaluma, that will generate a heaven-looking picture for sure. Anyhow, you should be careful when bathing on the upper diyaluma.

From the Poonagala route, you can easily reach the upper Diyaluma, but if you are coming from the bottom side of the waterfall, then you have to go on a difficult route to reach the upper area. However, there are a few nice pools available at the bottom to bathe safely. There is a nice viewpoint to observe the beauty of the Diyaluma Falls.

Diyaluma Falls is formed by Poonagala Oya, which is a branch of Kirindi Oya. There are some myths and folklore about this waterfall too. Sometimes your guide will tell you about those stories.


As Mahaweli Tours & Holidays, we suggest that you definitely visit this place if you are exploring places around the Ella area. It is a fantastic place to get relaxed and to wonder about Sri Lanka.



(Featured Image Source: Travelgram from Facebook