Highlights of Sri Lanka's East Coast

Like the North, the Eastern side of Sri Lanka was for a long-time not recommended for travel during the Civil War. As a result, many miles of incredible coastline have remained undeveloped and little visited – until now. Tourist infrastructure is springing up all over, with thirteen new hotels in mid-construction in Passekudah alone. Nearby Kalkudah remains fairly peaceful, but its stretch of perfect pristine beach is ripe for development. To the North lies the historic and town of Trincomalee – famous for its impressive natural harbour, praised by Admiral Nelson as the finest in world – and the quietly magnificent beaches of Nilaveli, Uppuveli, and Kuchchaveli. Nilaveli, and nearby Pigeon Island, offers arguably the best snorkelling and diving in the country, and surfers should head to the mecca of Arugam Bay on the South East coast – host of the annual International Surf Classic every summer, and a laidback tourist-friendly resort for decades. 

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Surfer, Arugam Bay, Sri Lanka
Traditionally among the most popular of all tourist destinations in Sri Lanka, Arugam Bay has been receiving western travellers for decades. Offering arguably the best surf on the island, this pristine strip of white beach on the island's South East coast has been cultivating its laidback, tourist-friendly atmosphere since a group of intrepid Australian surfers set up shop here in the late 1960s.
Bird-watching, Gal Oya National Park
Gal Oya is an alluring patch of wilderness in the heart of Sri Lanka. Located to the east of the Hill Country and to the west of coastal areas Ampara and Arugam Bay, this largely over-looked national park is comprised mainly of deep evergreen forest, interspersed with patches of savanna and scrub.
Pasikudah Bay, Sri Lanka
This part of the east coast suffered terribly due to the long years of civil war and from the 2004 Tsunami, but is now experiencing a significant resurgence, with new resorts popping up along its long stretch of golden beach.
koneswaram kovil, Trincomalee, Sri Lanka
On Sri Lanka's Northeast coast, Trincomalee, known as ‘Trinco' to the locals has historically been of great economic importance due to its large natural deep-water harbour, which has led to it changing hands a lot throughout the years.