jaffna peninsula

It's not a road trip without some car shots

By the end of the trip I had driven 1500 kms in the old Toyota Corolla. Despite being stopped on more than one occasion by the police, often for no apparent reason, no fine or bribe was paid for once. On one occasion my patience was properly tested as I had to wait 45 minutes and play an odd bluffing game before getting my license back.

The only small mishap was the windscreen ending up with a big crack - I’m not sure how it happened, but I suspect it was due to a change in temperature, the AC blasting on the screen after the car had been sitting in the sun a while. 

Some of the shots featured on the previous blog posts are part of a couple of small projects and series on Sri Lanka, but most are outtakes. The projects and series will soon be up on my new website which I’m currently putting the finishing touches on. 

Saint Anne's church, Kalpitiya

Taken on the coast behind Saint Anne’s church on Kalpitiya. 

Car roof reflection, Jaffna / Velanai causeway

Taken on the island of Velanai,just before the causeway linking it to Jaffna. The sky is reflected off the roof of the car. 

Rearview mirror, Velanai island

Taken on the desolate and flat island of Velanai.

Final stop, second part: Jaffna surroundings

At a Hindu festival on the small island of Pungudutivu, near Jaffna

During my staff in Jaffna I ventured out of town on a few days. I made a trip to Point Pedro, mainly to see the old, abandoned Saint Anthony’s church and its graveyard, now swamped by sand dunes.

Graveyard on dunes, Point Pedro

I also ventured to Nainativu island to have a peek at the Hindu temple.

Cow, Nainativu

The journey there involves crossing a few causeways linking small, desolate islands off the coast of Jaffna and a final 20 minute ferry ride to Nainativu island. On the way there I stumbled across a Hindu festival and observed the locals give one of the many shrines its annual and highly celebrated outing on a chariot around the temple (photo at the top).

Nainativu itself is practically empty bar the temple, a few shops and houses and a recently built Buddhist temple. 

Shop, Nainativu

Finally, I also returned to Velanai island and explored the eerily, empty town of Kayts. 

Downtown, Kayts

Here are a couple of more shots from my outings. 

Ray, Point Pedro

Some recently caught ray on the beach in Point Pedro.

Shop under a palm, Jaffna outskirts

A small shop perched under the shade of palm tree on the outskirts of Jaffna. 

Jaffna Peninsula

Below are a few shots taken on the Jaffna peninsula in the very north of Sri Lanka. 

The landscape here is flat; so flat that along the the causeways and coastal roads, water and land seem to merge into one, neither element dominating the horizon. There are no spectacular vistas like those the hill country has to offer, and most of the few towns around are half-deserted. Still, these features, or lack of, only add to the singularity of a place which has a distinctive feel to it.

The goats and the boat

A goat walks along Point Pedro’s coastal road while other goats take a rest on a boat. 

Keerimalai spring, near JaffnaMen enjoying a swim in Keerimalai springs, part of Naguleswaram temple, north of Jaffna. There is a separate pool for women only. 

Casuarina Beach, Karainagar, Jaffna District

Casuarina beach on the island of Karainagar is one of the peninsula’s best beaches and quite popular on week-ends. 

Jaffna

Fishermen beat their fishing nets off the coast of Ponnalai.