Welcome at BATAVIA Suriname
Batavia is located on the right bank of the Coppename river in Suriname, approximately 12.5 km south from where the Saramacca River flows into the Coppenameriver. Batavia was a military post of the Government in the 19th century. This area was designated in 1824 as being the segregation area for leprosy contagious lepers. Part of the military post Batavia (ABCD on the map) was assigned by royal decree in 1836 at the Catholic Mission in Suriname. It was Peter (Peerke) Donders who has worked here for 27 years and therefore has left a miraculously mark on the fortunes of the lepers. Batavia was closed in the late 19th century and the remaining lepers were transferred to Groot Chatillon, where the Roman Catholic Diocese obtained a new area. Especially after the beatification of Petrus Donders in 1982 Batavia became a remarkable place. But the struggle against nature was not sustainable and thus Batavia became quickly overgrown.
In 2000, thanks to Mgr. W. de Bekker revived the project. In the meantime, the entire area is assigned to the Roman Catholic Diocese at Paramaribo. Since 2016 Batavia is managed by the Foundation Devotion Petrus Donders. After a remake of the establishment Batavia reopened at the 130th anniversary of Peerke with a permanent exhibition at the Pilgrim House. Now, in 2017 Batavia not only became a worthy pilgrimage, but also a tourist attraction, where you can find the blue-yellow macaws (Ara ararauna).