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Trincomalee (‘Trinco’) is a port town on the east coast of Sri Lanka, having a population of about 100,000. The town is built on a peninsula, on one side of which is an inner deep-water harbor for anchorage (the fifth largest in the world), and on the other side are white beaches bordered by the Indian Ocean.
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Marvel at the famed Koneswaram temple, perched high on the promontory of Swami Rock overlooking the sea. The temple was destroyed by the Portuguese in 1624, and Fort Frederick was built on the foundations of the original shrine. You can now visit both the historic fort and the renovated temple just beyond the fort. Don't miss the opportunity to sunbathe, swim or snorkel along Trincomalee's picturesque beaches.
Trincomalee is a very compact town so walking is a suitable way to see the town. For longer trips rickshaws are available at nearly every corner.
Nearby is the famous Hindu Koneswaram temple and bell tower, and various Buddhist historical sites. Visit the seven hot springs just out of town.
A snorkelling trip to Pigeon Island is a must. There are local boats that will take you to this island for a fee of about US$30 (return). Snorkelling is a great way to see the abundant sea life. Sadly the coral is not respected by the locals. Snorkelling should be done with great caution as some areas are very deep, up to a thousand meters in depth.
Look for pottery, lacework, batik and other local handicrafts.
The currency is the Sri Lankan Rupee. The exchange rates are approximately 110Rs/ USD, or 170Rs/ EUR.
ATMs are located in many places (specially at bank branches) in the cities and suburbs, less so in the countryside.
Sinhala, Tamil and English are widely spoken throughout Sri Lanka, with the exception of remote villages where it might be Sinhala only or Tamil only.
Shopping hours Mon-Fri 0900-1730, Sat 0900-1300.
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