A secret hidden paradise amidst the Indian Ocean with a beautiful landscape and vegetation surrounded by beautiful marine environment. Delft Island, also known as Neduntheevu, is a flat island encircled by shallow water and beautiful beaches in the Palk Strait, the marine region between Indian state Tamilnadu and northern coast of Sri Lanka. Featuring unaffected rustic and remote ecosystem, Delft island shall give you a beautiful sightseeing experience where there are a lot of worth seeing historical monuments. The island is known for its population of wild ponies that were left on the island by Portuguese long ago. For a remote yet comfortable rural experience, Delft island is one of the best tourist destinations in Sri Lanka.
Although a small barren island of 4,700 hectares area with no modern infrastructures, Delft island has plenty of things to amuse its guests that range from natural beauty of the island to spectacular colonial heritage. The native houses are roofed by palmyrah leaves and fenced by coral stones. The wild horses roam freely on the island are truly the iconic feature of the island telling of colonial past of the island. Among the tourist attractions of Delft island are its Portuguese fort, Baobab and banyan trees, Quindah tower, Sarapiddy wells, foot print rock formation, old stables, dovecote, old stupa, Delft maha vidyalaya and coral walls.
Located by people of Tamil origin, Delft island has a rich history and heritage from Chola dynasty, Dutch, Portuguese and British colonial period. Locally called as Nedunthivu (the island of cows), it was named as "Illha das Vaka" by the Portuguese and later renamed as Delft by the Dutch. During the colonial period, the island of Delft had strategic relevance. A fort and a lighthouse were built on the beach for surveillance. Wild horses that are widely seen on the island are the true reflection of colonial past of the island. Portuguese introduced them back in 1600s and now they are iconic of the island. During the period of civil war the island was not accessible to tourists, yet managed to escape the conflicts unharmed and unaffected.
The best season of the year to visit Delft island is months from July through August when the weather tends to get nice and comfortable with occasional breezes. Just like in the main land of Sri Lanka, February can be comparatively cooler while January shall be wet month with down-pouring. As for the time of traveling, you better choose the morning ferry service since the evening one shall be altered if unpleasant weather occurs.
Visiting Delft island is much of a island hopping experience where exploring the colonial remnants shall be the major activity you have to do on the island. Waters are shallow and beaches are lovely while the island is perfect for experiencing how a remote village life shall look like on a secluded island. Witnessing to their simple daily life and seeing how they are content and make use of with what they got. Winding down on the beach can be a different experience on Delft island. You shall take tour of various historical monuments and rustic entities on the island. The very boat transfer to the island from Jaffna shall be a nice adventure at the very outset.
Located approximately 30 Kilometres away from the main land of northern province of Sri Lanka, travelers need to go across the water to reach Delft island. Two ferry services a day (morning and evening) is provided from Kurikattuwan, on the southern portion of Pungudutivu that is accessible by 45 minutes car drive from Jaffna. It would only take you about one hour to reach the island. Both Navy and private agency run the boat service. Journey can be a bit bumpy sometimes. On the island there shall be a single bus available for your traveling back and forth. For carrying out a lavish itinerary, hiring a tractor shall be the recommended option.