Sri Lanka’s east coast is one of its least visited areas, and has long been the secret destination for the better informed. Trincomalee (or more commonly just Trinco) is the largest town and has been a key port for at least two thousand years. It was a major centre of trade between the Annuradhapura, and later the Polonnaruwa kingdoms and the ports of eastern India, Cambodia and Indonesia. The east coast later became a major area of Muslim settlement and Trinco, Battcaloa, and Pottvil (Arumgam Bay) were trading areas.
The Dutch first settled at Batticaloa, while the British and French vied over Trinco. There are miles of glorious beaches stretching from Kuchchiveli, to the north of Trinco, south to Passikudah, Arugambay and Kumana National Park at the island’s South Eastern point. The beaches of Passikudah Bay are an attraction for water sports and relaxation.
The nearby village of Kalkudah has retained its original charm. In addition to great beaches along the coast is some world class surfing, seasonal whale and dolphin watching, and some spectacular diving. Trinco is a quiet town and easy to explore. Fort Frederick and the Maritime Museum are both accessed from the Dutch Bay.