The Port of Trincomalee is the largest natural harbor in Sri Lanka and the second-largest natural harbor in the world. It has an area of 1630 hectares of water and the entrance to the port is about 500 meters wide. Formerly known as Gokanna Port, Trincomalee Port has been active since ancient times as a trading center connecting the two West Indies. The port of Trincomalee was a unique port for the protection and trade of the Indian Ocean under the Western nations as the port is a hilly area and has a high level of protection of ships from monsoon winds.
Kottiyar Bay is the largest bay in the country. As such, the Trincomalee Port has become the best natural harbor in the country. There is a big rock at one point in the bay. It’s called Lord Rock. Protected from sea waves and strong winds, the port of Trincomalee in the Gulf of Kottiyar has long been an important port for seafaring.
Several forts were built to protect the port area, and the fort, now known as Fort Frederick by the Dutch, is an important defensive center in the past as well as in the present. These ports in Trincomalee are the eastern end of the highway system that has been in operation in Sri Lanka, especially since pre-Christian times.
Trincomalee, a major center of the colonial era, came under the rule of the Portuguese, Dutch, French, and English. Fort Frederick Fort in Trincomalee provides evidence for this.
Heritage management activities were initiated here in 2016 by the Central Cultural Fund with a focus on Fort Frederick. The main objective of this project is to protect the archeological heritage of the area, which has been the site of a civil war for a long time, and to provide the necessary facilities for the public to view the heritage. Also, under this heritage management program, a program is being implemented to protect the Buddhist heritage as well as the Hindu heritage in Sri Lanka.