Jaffna in northern Sri Lanka is known for its Hindu people and their unwavering faith. It is probably this faith that carried them through the Civil Unrest that spanned three decades in the North and East of Sri Lanka. Thankfully, now the entire country is enjoying peace and a boost in development, and in this arena Jaffna is holding its own.

The temples in Sri Lanka’s North and East are a sight to behold- full of life, color and voices raised in worship. One such temple is the Thaanthonreeswarar Temple in Kokkadicholai, one of the five most important Sivan temples in Sri Lanka. It is believed to have been built during the Chola Empire of the Eleventh Century, and claims to be a site of many miracles. Kokkadicholai is 15 km southwest of Batticaloa in eastern Sri Lanka and is on the other side of the lagoon, which can be reached by the Manmunai Bridge.

The temple’s annual festival begins in mid-August and is attended by thousands of Hindu devotees. Two weeks of prayer services, rituals, chanting and processions characterize the festivities in honor of Lord Thaanthonreeswarar. It is a unique celebration of Hindu religious devotion and culture.

This then is an added reason to visit the North and East of Sri Lanka this summer, because you’ll be able to say that you truly visited the island and learnt of its different cultures. If you do decide to make your way for the festivities, opt to stay at a new hotel in Jaffna- The Thinnai All Suite Boutique Hotel that is quite adept and making its guests feel at home. In fact, the spacious, luxurious accommodation and personalised service will make you feel like you never left home. So now you have more reason to visit Sri Lanka, and specifically Jaffna, this summer.