A fishing village lies next to the beach, attaches to the Manalkadu dunes with its ruins hidden inside; the famous one is the Dutch built St. Anthony’s church. It is a long beach that is ideal for walks next to the waves.
Tropical Paradise at Manalkadu Beach
Picture yourself on a tropical beach adorned with swaying coconut palms and turquoise waters gently caressing the soft sand. Manalkadu Beach makes this dream a reality. The warm Indian Ocean beckons you to explore its vibrant marine life and captivating coral reefs. Snorkelers and divers will be enthralled by the colourful tropical fish darting among the coral formations, creating a mesmerizing underwater spectacle.
Exploring Manalkadu Village
Located on the northeastern shores of the Jaffna Peninsula, Manalkadu is a village that embraces the essence of its Tamil name, which translates to "sand bush." This name alludes to Sri Lanka's longest chain of dunes, partially overgrown by a lush thicket. These natural formations reach impressive heights of up to 16 meters. Villagers have diligently cultivated a Casuarina thicket to further safeguard the inland forest belt.
As you wander through the village, you'll encounter the ruins of St. Anthony's Church, a testament to the area's historical significance. The origins of this church building date back to Dutch rule in the 17th century, although some claim the British constructed it in the late 19th century. Notably, the church walls feature coral stone, a rare sight in Sri Lanka, adding to its architectural allure. Due to the shifting dunes, the sand occasionally covers different sections of the ruins, creating an ever-changing landscape. Adjacent to the church, you'll find a tranquil graveyard, its crosses standing as a memorial to the victims of the devastating 2004 tsunami.
Getting to Manalkadu Beach
To reach Manalkadu Beach, embark on a journey from Jaffna along the Jaffna-Point Pedro Road. As you pass through the scenic landscapes of Kalviyankadu, Siruppiddy, and Karaveddi, you'll soon arrive at the entrance to this coastal paradise. A small dirt road stretches approximately 3.1 kilometres from there, leading you to the lovely Manalkadu Beach.
Once you arrive, you'll be greeted by a picturesque sight—a stretch of sand extending as far as the eye can see. The beach is sparsely populated, with only a few fishing boats dotting the shoreline. Towering above the surroundings, the small St. Anthony's Church sits in isolation, featuring an impressive 6-meter-tall statue of Jesus. Serenity envelops the beach, and you won't find any vendors or services, allowing you to immerse yourself fully in the tranquillity of nature.
- What activities can I enjoy at Manalkadu Beach?
- Manalkadu Beach offers various activities, including snorkelling, diving, and leisurely walks along the sandy coastline.
- Are there accommodations available near the beach?
- As Manalkadu Beach is still relatively undiscovered, limited accommodation options exist. Therefore, arranging accommodations in Jaffna and planning a day trip to the beach is recommended.
- Can I visit the ruins of St. Anthony's Church?
- Yes, visitors can explore the ruins of St. Anthony's Church and experience the historical significance of this architectural gem.
- Is Manalkadu Beach suitable for families?
- Yes, Manalkadu Beach is suitable for families. Its serene atmosphere, calm waters, and pristine surroundings make it an ideal destination for a peaceful family getaway.
- How is the weather at Manalkadu Beach?
- Manalkadu Beach enjoys a year-round summer climate, with the South West monsoon from April to October bringing tranquil waters and plenty of sunshine to the area.