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|Year and Month||2017 March 19th|
|Number of Days||One day|
|Crew||05-Amila, Ashan, Neranjana, Nuwan and My self|
|Accommodation||Previous day night at Jaffna Patinam Hotel|
|Transport||Van and boat|
|Activities||Photography and just visiting|
|Route||Kandy->Jaffna->Mankumpan Jetty (මන්කුම්පාන් ජැටිය)->Palaitivu (පලෙයිතිව්)->Back to Mankumpan Jetty->Jaffna->Polonnaruwa|
|Tips, Notes and Special remark||
Special thanks to Amila. If you wouldn’t have arranged things our journey would be difficult.
|Comments||Discuss this trip report, provide feedback or make suggestions at Lakdasun Forum on the thread|
St. Anthony is the saint of worship among catholic population at coastal areas of Sri Lanka. There are annual festivals to worship St. Anthony at Kochchikade, Katchatheevu and Palaitivu churches.
As Katchatheevu and Palaitivu islands are out of bound for general population, festival season is the only opportunity to visit there. Usually Katchatheevu festival occurs in March and Palaitivu festival would be held on following Sunday. As Katchatheevu is a debatable island, the festival last only for two days and south Indians also participate. But Palaitivu Island festival last for seven days and opened only for Sri Lankans.
Where is Palaitivu situated
History of Palaitivu Island church
It doesn’t have a long history like Katchatheevu. The church was established by locals 50 years ago. ( Source: Jaffna Bishop House)
Last year when I visited at Katchatheevu, got to know about Palaitivu Island and it’s festival. We were waiting for a year to do this visit. Ashan, Neranjana and Nuwan also joined with us for this journey.
Thanks for Amila, he has arranged everything nicely for this visit. Myself and Nuwan arrived Jaffna from Kandy and other two reached there from Colombo. It was a sleepless night for Amila as both parties arrived in early morning in two occasions. Our journey was planned at 5am and we have reached Mankumpan jetty at that time.
We had to travel by a water jet and we were only five civilians with two other government workers. It was the last day of annual festival and maximum crowd has reached the island to participate the morning mass.
The journey took around 1hour and surrounding was beautiful with rising sun. We have reached the island by 7’o clock and hundreds of boats were roaming around the Island.
According to the Navy officer total number of 5000-6000 devotees has come to the island for morning mass. Navy has supplied drinking water for all devotees. We spent few minutes at morning mass and started to hang around.
Palaitivu festival market was luxurious and can be seen large variety of goods. We also bought some Thosai and Chinese rolls. After walking through the market we decided to get into the island.
We had to cross a nice grassy land and human droppings were found there. After jumping over human droppings we reached the beautiful beach. This beach extends around the island and shallow sea was ideal for bath. A coral reef is margined the island about 500m away from beach. It creates a shallow sea around the island. After having the bath we again walked further around this island. Island doesn’t have large trees only bushes can be seen around.
We came back to Navy camp around 10.30am and had the breakfast they prepared for Navy officers and priests.
Our return journey also happened by same water jet but it spent much time as boat has to avoid fishing nets.
It was a nice short visit to Palaitivu Island.
Thank you for reading. Have a safe journey