Batticaloa District

Batticaloa is the proud capital of eastern Sri lanka. The region, which is bounded to the east by the Indian Ocean, has an average elevation of approximately five meters above sea level. Inhabiting the middle part of the province, Batticaloa has a long-standing culture with different unique traditions. Batticaloa is known for the beautiful lagoons flowing through it, especially the Batticaloa Lagoon, Valachcenai Lagoon, and Panichchankerni / Vakarai Lagoon. Batticaloa Lagoon, which is the longest, features widespread mangrove swamplands and sea grass beds that attract a wide variety of water birds that enter the coast. Batticaloa District covers an area around 2,633 square kilometers, which is about 3.8% of Sri Lanka's total land area.  The  topography  of  the  district  is  relatively flat  in  the  coastal  areas but undulating in the western part. The scenery is varied with low land paddy fields, forests, scrub lands, wetlands and lagoons being predominant.  The population of the District is around 596,300—composed of 158,606 families—and the density of population averages approximately 223 people per square Km..

Administrative structure of Batticaloa District

Batticaloa District had been divided into 14 Divisional Secretariat divisions which are composed of 345 Grama Niladhari Divisions and around 966 villages. The District of Batticaloa, one of the economically lagging areas of the country, has sporadically faced natural disasters such as a cyclone (1968), tsunami (2004) , and flood (2011) as well as ethnic conflict spanning three decades. The combined impact of these natural and man-made disasters is reflected by the district's present socio-economic conditions, crumbling commercial infrastructure, and the emergence of vulnerable social segments of the region

Tourism in Batticaloa District

Sri Lanka tourism is one of the most talked about among European tourists because of the country's long history and legendary stories. Batticaloa is also home to many historical locations.  A self-guided walking tour through old Batticaloa town offers a sense of its unique environment,. Other interesting sites within the District include the Old Dutch Fort,  and Muhathuwaram lighthouse. Noteworthy parks include: Mahatma Gandhi park, Batticaloa Lagoon park, and Eco park. Important beaches are Kallady beach, Pasikuda beach and Kalkuda beaches. In addition to this there are many mind blowing viewpoints, exciting recreational activities, and other places to go in this lovely city. Check out for our places to visit in Batticaloa

Most hotels and guest houses are built along or near the coastal beaches or lagoon and have a panoramic water view. You can find reasonably priced Batticaloa hotels and resorts that cost between US$30 to US$60 per night, with breakfast included.  

Pasikuda Beach and Kalkuda Beach are well recognized as major tourist attractions in the region—owing to their rich and white sandy shores where visitors walk barefoot. The District has some of the loveliest coral reef bays and lagoon beaches. The reef protected twin bay beaches and shallow bays of Pasikuda and Kalkudah make up an ideal stretch for swimming, windsurfing and snorkeling. This one of a kind reef system in Sri Lanka has been declared a Marine Sanctuary by NARA. There are other stunning beaches in the District like the Kallady beach, Nasivanthivu Beach, Navalady beach and Vakarai beach you should find time to visit. Many visitors find this heaven attractive and breathtaking in every sense of the word.

You will not want to miss some of the Batticaloa's colorful festivals, especially the Mamangam festival, Thanthamalai festival, and the St. Maries feast. This delightful District and it’s surroundings are rich with flora and wildlife, as well as culture to explore and gasp at. For travelers looking for thrills, you should visit some of the most beautiful scuba diving spots in Batticaloa.

A few years ago the government reserved 156 acres of land around Pasikuda for tourism development and provided concessions for investors to boost the District's tourism industry. Many classy accommodations such as hotels, guest houses, cultural parks, and resorts have been built in recent times to cater to the high demand for accommodation due to the influx of local and foreign travelers. There are countless things to do in Batticaloa and places to visit in Batticaloa. 

It’s not just the beaches that make Batticaloa so special; there are scores of other historically, culturally, and geographically important places to visit. Come visit Batticaloa and find out for yourself!


Latitude: 7.730997 Longitude: 81.674729 Elevation: 28 ft
the best travel advice comes from the people who live here
Charles Rajendra Moses

Accessibility Notes

Batticaloa is accessible from either Colombo through Polonaruwa or from Trincomalee through Vaharai. A railway link from Colombo offers a convenient transportation to the district.

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