The places to visit in Mannar are comprehensive and mixed because of the compelling landscape and chronology; from being featured in famous ancient tales to maintaining some unconventional natural interests, Mannar will surprise you making it a location not to be skipped when touring North and West Parts of Sri Lanka. As you intend to learn about the breath-taking surroundings of Mannar, prepare to be engaged with this list of attractions and Experience checklist.
1. Adam’s bridge – Mannar
From November to April, many migratory and resident birds turn the first dune of Adam’s bridge into their nesting grounds. One would have to be cautious when walking around since you could walk too close to a bird’s eggs simply lying on the ground. You would get angry calls from birds to stay away from their eggs. You must make a reservation or have special permission to go into the area. Otherwise, you would have to access Adam’s Bridge from the opposite side, which is a bit considerably far. If you decide to walk out from the 1st dune to the 2nd and so on, please know when the waves would come in since the dunes move all the time, and the road you go in would have to change during the day. More Details
2. Talaimannar Pier and Lighthouse
The Talaimannar Pier and Lighthouse was managed when the ferry co-operations between Sri Lanka and India survived until 1964, before a cyclone destroyed the port. The railroad connects Talaimannar with all the country’s major cities, and the ferry takes the visitors to Rameshwaram in India. Today, only part of the pier is available to the public because the Sri Lanka Navy has its base of operations here. The lighthouse is close to the dock, built in 1915 during British control to serve the ships at sea. This lighthouse is 62 feet tall and has a lantern and a gallery. More details
3. Mannar Fort
The Portuguese built the Mannar Fort in 1560, located in the heart of Mannar, overlooking the Indian Ocean, ensuring that this fort provides all the security that this trading port requires. During the war with the Dutch in 1658, this four-bastion fort was damaged, but after they took over Sri Lanka, they rebuilt the fort in 1696. Finally, in 1795, the Dutch surrendered the Mannar fort to the British. The ruins inside the fort are attractive, with one area being the Church of the defence. More Details
4. Baobab Tree – Mannar
This Baobab Tree is a gift from the African labourers traded in Jaffna and Mannar by the Portuguese. The tree has a large trunk that can fit 4 – 5 adults within and has a sole branch formation giving rise to stories such as the locals assuming that this tree was settled upside down with its roots holding up at the top towards the sky. These trees are more than 400 years old. More details
5. Talaimannar Sand Dunes
There are many dunes in Talaimannar, presenting various types of vacation adventures in Sri Lanka. Desert regions are limited in Sri Lanka, and this is one of the several areas where you can experience such a surrounding. Therefore, this could be a perfect choice if one sees spots for film tourism. More Details
6. Kudiramalai Point
Kudiramalai Point is located near Wilpattu National Park; this point boasts a rich culture and an old port city. After, Prince Vijaya landed in Sri Lanka by accident at this point. In some areas, black sand and many corals are observed over the sea level. More Details
7. National Shrine of Our Lady of Madu Church
This Church has a story of more than 400 years and is one of the country’s most beloved and encouraging churches. In 1924, Pope Pius XI granted a canonical investiture to the Church. Before the civil war divided the country, there were times when close to a million people would gather at this Church during the August festival, making it the most visited feast. However, the Church is in the middle of a thick forest, and locals couldn’t see this place during the civil war. More Details
8. Mannar Bird Sanctuary
In an area of more than 4,800 hectares, the Mannar Bird Sanctuary, known as the Vankalai Lagoon, is residence to numerous migratory birds. The location was proclaimed a sanctuary by the Department of Wildlife Conservation in 2008 and delivered diverse ecosystems for the birds to live peacefully. In addition, the area provides exceptional feeding and living habitats for its large waterbird inhabitants, hosting over 20,000 waterbirds during the migrating season. As a result, the sanctuary was declared a Ramsar Site, keeping it a wetland site of global importance under the Ramsar Convention.
9. Keeri Beach
Delivering stunning vistas of the Indian Ocean, the blue waters of Kerri Beach are the ideal spot for swimming and rest. The shore stretches a vast distance of isolation and tranquillity and is bordered by a slight palmyra palm forest residence to an army of monkeys. There are changing spaces and showers available to the travellers.
10. Fishing Village Experience
The fishing village is on a beach a few kilometres from town, and you can enjoy a relaxed environment with friendly villages that explain the day-to-day life of the ocean and fishing.
11. Thiruketheeswaram Hindu Temple
Thiruketheeswaram Hindu Temple in Manner is one of the most revered Hindu Temples in Sri Lanka. Kovil temple is one of the five abodes of the God Shiva ( Pancha Ishwarams) in Sri Lanka and is devoted to the Hindu god Shiva. According to the Hindu natives of the Manthota, Thiruketheeswaram is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams of Shiva celebrated in the poetry of the Tevaram. Therefore, it is assumed that there is a connection between the Ramayana trail and Thiruketheeswaram Hindu Temple.
12. Yoda Wewa Sanctuary
Yoda Wewa (“Yoda” is the Sinhalese term for “Giant”), the Yada Wewa (Giant’s Tank) Sanctuary, is a nature sanctuary protecting scope of 10,700 acres and located about 20 kilometres southeast of Mannar Island. Further, it was officially assigned a sanctuary in 1954.
How to reach Mannar ?
Trains are exceptionally affordable in Sri Lanka and include all the essential facilities. Further, two trains per day operate from Colombo to Mannar in each direction. The travel will take 8½ hours, and You can continue your expedition by taxi from Mannar station.
Mannar railway station ☏ +94 23 3 232233
Travelling by bus can be relaxed depending on the number of passengers and the vehicle’s condition. The price range also varies according to the classification of the bus.
It would help if you had to get on a bus at the Bus port in Bastian Mawatha Colombo and resume an 8-hour journey to Vavuniya. However, after getting off at Vavuniya, you must take a taxi or bus and continue your trip to Mannar, which would take at least 1½ hours.
The distance from Colombo to Mannar Island is about 220 km and you can invariably rent a car and drive to Mannar by train, and the journey from Colombo to Mannar would bring at least 6 hours. You can take multiple roads, and each road to Mannar is delightful and relatively uncrowded, except for periodic central locations.
Weather in Mannar
The average temperature in Mannar is 28°C- 31°C; therefore, some would define it as remarkably warm and windy. And the most suitable time to visit Mannar is from January to September.