|• Type||Urban Council|
|• Density||308/km2 (797/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (Sri Lanka Standard Time Zone)|
Mannar (Tamil : மன்னார், romanized: Maṉṉār, Sinhala : මන්නාරම, romanized: Mannārama, formerly spelled Manar) is the main town of Mannar District, Northern Province, Sri Lanka. It is governed by an Urban Council. The town is located on Mannar Island overlooking the Gulf of Mannar and is home to the historic Ketheeswaram temple.
Formerly the town was renowned as a center of pearl fishing, mentioned in the 2nd-century CE Periplus of the Erythraean Sea.
Mannar is known for its baobab trees and for its fort, built by the Portuguese in 1560 and taken by the Dutch in 1658 and rebuilt; its ramparts and bastions are intact, though the interior is largely destroyed.
Visually, the modern town is dominated by its churches, Hindu temples and mosques.The Catholic Church has a diocese headquartered in the town. By rail the town is connected to the rest of Sri Lanka by the Mannar Line. It was occupied by LTTE during Sri Lankan Civil War between 1983 and 2009.
The region is itself named after the river Mannar, derived from the Tamil words maṉṉ meaning "mud" or "clay" and ār meaning river.
The Gulf of Mannar is a large shallow bay forming part of the Laccadive Sea in the Indian Ocean with an average depth of 5.8 m (19 ft). It lies between the west coast of Sri Lanka and the southeastern tip of India, in the Coromandel Coast region. The chain of low islands and reefs known as Rama Sethu which includes Mannar Island, separates the Gulf of Mannar from Palk Bay, which lies to the north between Sri Lanka and India. The Malvathu Oya of Sri Lanka and the estuaries of Thamirabarani River and Vaippar River of South India drain into the Gulf. The dugong is found here.
Koneswaram temple of Trincomalee or Thirukonamalai Konesar Temple – The Temple of the Thousand Pillars and Dakshina-Then Kailasam is a classical-medieval Hindu temple complex in Trincomalee, a Hindu religious pilgrimage centre in Eastern Province, Sri Lanka. The most sacred of the Pancha Ishwarams of Sri Lanka, it was built significantly during the reign of the early Cholas and the Five Dravidians of the Early Pandyan Kingdom atop Konesar Malai, a promontory overlooking Trincomalee District, Gokarna bay and the Indian Ocean. Its Pallava, Chola, Pandyan and Jaffna design reflect a continual Tamil Saivite influence in the Vannimai region from the classical period. The monument contains its main shrine to Shiva in the form Kona-Eiswara, shortened to Konesar. Connected at the mouth of the Mahavilli Ganga River to the footprint of Shiva at Sivan Oli Padam Malai at the river's source, the temple symbolically crowns the flow of the Ganges River from Shiva's head of Mount Kailash to his feet.
The Jaffna Kingdom, also known as Kingdom of Aryachakravarti, of modern northern Sri Lanka was a historic monarchy that came into existence around the town of Jaffna on the Jaffna peninsula. It was traditionally thought to be established after the invasion of Magha, who is credited with the founding of the Jaffna kingdom and is said to have been from Kalinga, in India. Established as a powerful force in the north, north east and west of the island, it eventually became a tribute-paying feudatory of the Pandyan Empire in modern South India in 1258, gaining independence in 1323, when the last Pandyan ruler of Madurai was defeated and expelled in 1323 by Malik Kafur, the army general of the Muslim Delhi Sultanate. For a brief period, in the early to mid-14th century, it was an ascendant power in the island of Sri Lanka when all regional kingdoms accepted subordination. However, the kingdom was eventually overpowered by the rival Kotte Kingdom, around 1450 when it was invaded by Prince Sapumal under the Kotte Kingdom's directive.
Matara is a major city in Sri Lanka, on the southern coast of Southern Province. It is the second largest city in Southern Province. It is 160 km (99 mi) from Colombo. It is a major commercial hub, and it is the administrative capital and largest city of Matara District.
Bharatha People also known as Bharatakula and Paravar, is an ethnicity in the island of Sri Lanka. Earlier considered a caste of the Sri Lankan Tamils, they got classified as separate ethnic group in the 2001 census. They are descendant of Tamil speaking Paravar of Southern India who migrated to Sri Lanka under Portuguese rule. They live mainly on the western coast of Sri Lanka and mainly found in the cities of Mannar, Negombo and Colombo.
Negombo is a major city in Sri Lanka, situated on the west coast and at the mouth of the Negombo Lagoon, in Western Province, 38 km from Colombo via Colombo - Katunayake Expressway.
Ketheeswaram temple is an ancient Hindu temple in Mannar, Northern Province Sri Lanka. Overlooking the ancient Tamil port towns of Manthai and Kudiramalai, the temple has lain in ruins, been restored, renovated and enlarged by various royals and devotees throughout its history. Tirukkētīsvaram is one of the Pancha Ishwarams dedicated to the Hindu deity Shiva and is venerated by Shaivas throughout the continent. Throughout its history, the temple has been administered and frequented by Sri Lankan Hindu Tamils. Its famous tank, the Palavi tank, is of ancient antiquity and was restored from the ruins. Tirukkētīsvaram is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams of Shiva glorified in the poems of the Tevaram.
Mannar Island, formerly spelt Manar Island, which lies off the north-western coast of Sri Lanka, is part of Mannar District, Sri Lanka. It is linked to the main island of Sri Lanka by a causeway and the Mannar Bridge, which carries the A14 highway, and a railway bridge. It has an area of about 130 square kilometres (50 sq mi), mainly covered with vegetation and sand.
Karaiyar is a Sri Lankan Tamil caste found mainly on the northern and eastern coastal areas of Sri Lanka, and globally among the Tamil diaspora.
Kayts, is one of the important villages in Velanai Island which is a small island off the coast of the Jaffna Peninsula in northern Sri Lanka. There are number of other villages within the Velanai Islands such as Allaippiddi, Mankumpan, Velanai, Saravanai, Puliyankoodal, Suruvil, Naranthanai, Karampon and Melinchimunai.
Chunnakam is a town, located 9.7 km (6.0 mi) north of Jaffna. It is one of the important commercial centres in Jaffna. The original name of the town was Mayilani. In northern Sri Lanka, Chunnakam is only second to Jaffna in terms of population density and commercial activities in and around its neighbourhoods.
Vankalai or Vangalai or Vangkaalai is a predominantly fishing and farming village situated in Mannar District of the Northern Province of Sri Lanka. It lies along the Naanaattan Road with the sea on its west connects to Indian Ocean. The shores from Vankalai 20 km south to the ancient Tamil subsidiary port of Kudiramalai formed the world's most famous pearl fishing banks in the classical and medieval periods. Its northern boundary is the historic Hindu shrine of Thiru Ketheeswaram.
Pamban Island, also known as Rameswaram Island, is an island located between peninsular India and Sri Lanka, on the Adam's Bridge archipelago. The second largest island in the latter, Pamban Island belongs to India and forms the Rameswaram taluk of the Ramanathapuram district of the state of Tamil Nadu. It is the largest island in Tamil Nadu by area. The principal town in the island is the pilgrimage centre of Rameswaram.
The Vanni chieftaincies or Vanni principalities was a region between Anuradhapura and Jaffna, but also extending to along the eastern coast to Panama and Yala, during the Transitional and Kandyan periods of Sri Lanka. This land was a collection of chieftaincies of principalities that were a collective buffer zone between the Jaffna Kingdom, in the north of Sri Lanka, and the Sinhalese kingdoms in the south. The emergance of these chieftaincies were a direct result of the breakdown of central authority and the collapse of the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa in the 13th century, as well as the establishment of the Jaffna Kingdom in the Jaffna Peninsula. Control of this area was taken over by dispossessed Sinhalese nobles and chiefs of the South Indian military of Māgha of Kalinga (1215–1236), whose 1215 invasion of Polonnaruwa led to the kingdom's downfall. Sinhalese chieftaincies would lay on the northern border of the Sinhalese kingdom while the Tamil chieftaincies would border the Jaffna Kingdom and the remoter areas of the eastern coast, outside of the control of either kingdom.
The Portuguese conquest of the Jaffna kingdom occurred after Portuguese traders arrived at the rival Kotte Kingdom in the southwest of modern Sri Lanka in 1505. Many kings of Jaffna, such as Cankili I, initially confronted the Portuguese in their attempts at converting the locals to Roman Catholicism, but eventually made peace with them.
Thiriyai is a small village in the eastern Trincomalee District of Sri Lanka. It is situated about 25 miles north of Trincomalee town through Nilaveli. The total population of the village is 640 at the 2012 census.
Chilaw is a large town in Puttalam District, North Western Province, Sri Lanka. It is governed by an urban council. The town is located, 80 km away from the capital Colombo via Negombo.
Mannar District is one of the 25 districts of Sri Lanka, the second level administrative division of the country. The district is administered by a District Secretariat headed by a District Secretary appointed by the central government of Sri Lanka. The capital of the district is Mannar, which is located on Mannar Island.
Kudiramalai is a cape and ancient port town on the west coast of Sri Lanka.
Manthai is a coastal town and an ancient harbor situated in the Mannar district, of the Northern Province of Sri Lanka. Manthai functioned as the main port of the Anuradhapura Kingdom throughout its history.