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|Year and Month||January, 2015|
|Number of Days||Two|
|Crew||2 (Nalinda and myself)|
|Accommodation||Badulla Hospital quarters|
|Activities||Archaeology / trekking / Scenery / Photography / Waterfall hunting / Cave exploration|
|Route||D1 Monaragala ->Andaulpotha -> Loggal oya -> Arawa -> 17th mile post B 801 -> Wiharalanda -> Meegahakivula -> Kalugahakadura -> Meegahakivula-> Badulla
D2 Badulla -> Meegahakivula -> Akurukaduwa -> Kandeketiya -> Godunna -> Tennepanguwa –> Badulla ->Monaragala
|Tips, Notes and Special remark||
** SPECIAL THANKS TO ** Indaka from Bandarawela
|Comments||Discuss this trip report, provide feedback or make suggestions at Lakdasun Forum on the thread|
Another Random weekend and nowhere to go suddenly decided to visit Meegahakivula but in my wish list there were only two places. Early morning I reached Loggal oya to witness a lovely sun rise and from there I proceeded towards 16th mile post of Meegahakivula road and took the left hand turn towards Arawa.
Purana saman devalaya, karadagahamada
Passing Loggal oya I reached Karandagahamada temple. When I met the head priest he was ever so humble to provide me further information about other interesting places. He handed me a magazine called “Mihituru” and it had many places of interest in it and the edition I saw was all about “Wiyaluwa” (Meegahakivula + Kandeketiya + Ridimaliyadda). This temple in said to be done by King Kavanthissa and also it is believed that lord Budhdha had “dane” at this place while traveling to Muthiyanganaya from Mahiyanganaya. You could get more info on this from this link
Polgahaarawa Kaluwala cascade
Next in line was a cascade known as Kaluwala. Long ago on our lakdasun forum Chamara pointed out about this place (click the link). And I wanted to visit it since then. To reach it one needs to reach Arawa and from there take the road towards Kalugahakadura via Polgahaarawa. The cascade is by the side of the road. Please note you need a vehicle with good ground clearance for this.
Komarika (කෝමාරිකා) Ela
From Arawa I returned back to the main road (Meegahakivula rd) and proceeded towards 17th mile post. From there I took Pallewela road and at the beginning of this road you would note a canal, this is called Komarika Ela. This shunts water from Loggal oya to the surrounding paddy fields and its 18km’s long. This was initially done by a prince called Kumarasinghe to cultivate paddy fields belonging to Muthiyangana temple.
Rantati Deke Diya bubula (රන්තැටි දෙකේ දිය බුබුල )
Proceeding along the road to Pallewela for 1km will bring you to Wiharalanda. There are few houses with a small paddy field and a water tank at one point. 20m away you would come across this interesting fresh water spring. There is much folklore related to this spring. One of those is a “farmer seen two golden plates knocking together and floating on top of the spring”
Alakolagoba (අලකොලගොබ) purana viharaya
Passing Wiharalanda and proceeding 1.5km’s took me towards Alakolagoba temple. One could easily note the ancient sthupa which now harbors the bo tree on it and monoliths of an ancient “tempiti wehera”. There are two guard stones with female figures at this temple symbolizing that this was done by the queen’s craftsman. The chief monk was so kind and helpful in every sense and the visit to this Temple which was done by king Walagamba was worth the effort.
Randoliya diya ne Pokuna (රන්දෝලිය දිය නෑ පොකුණ )
The head priest of Alakolagoba temple gave me two teenage monks to show me the way to an interesting place where king Walagamba’s queens have washed themselves before entering the temple premises for religious rituals. This natural tank like place is located in Loggal oya which flows close to the temple and one needs a guide to reach this place. There is evidence that once a roof like structure lied across this tank and racks to hang their clothes was there, now only the holes which supported those structures could be seen.
Raanagala(රෑනගල) girilen Purana viharaya
From Pallewela I returned back to the main road and reached Meegahakivula town where I took the left turn towards Ketawatta. From Keselwatta I took a 2mile uphill road towards this temple. It is believed to be done by either King Kumarathissa or Walagamba. There are many caves in this mountainous area and some are very large to even hold a complete Sunday school.
Jeewan ella / Deevan ella
To reach this one needs to take the Ketawatta road from Meegahakivula for 2 miles and take a left turn towards Pimburaulpotha. After proceeding 500m you will find a stair way to the left. Go along this stair way until you see a clear path to the right to reach the base of the fall.
Wee Atuwa(වී අටුව)
Pass the stair way to Jeewan ella and proceed towards Pimburaulpotha get a guide from the village to show you the place with ruins. “Wee atuwa is” the table like structure where villages offered paddy to the kings palace and there was a caretaker for this place too. Now one could only see the remains of the pillars scattered around.
Proceeding along Ketawatta road will bring you to Gurumada junction from here ride along Kalugahakadura rd until you reach Komarika gama where above mentioned Komarika canal could be found. From the village get a guide to show you around. This place has remains of an ancient kovil and there are few short pillars, Bo tree, rocky wall to justify its ancient existence. This is believed to be done by a local ruler called Kumarasinghne.
Where king Kumrasinghe’s palace ones stood (මාලිගාවත්ත)
Passing Komarika gama one needs to proceed towards Kalugahakadura where Wendesiyaya Praja shalawa could be found from here take the left turn towards Ambagahawela. Get a local guy to show you this place. It is believed King Kumarasinghe’s palace was done by wood plus clay and that’s why none of its parts could be found. This local ruler supplied water to his palace from a large fresh water spring which the locals call “Maligawe linda”. This fresh water pond is still been used by locals.
Weebeddegedara(වීබද්දේගෙදර) kadura ella
One needs to proceed toward Kalugahakadura from Meegahakivula and reach the board saying “Kalugahakadura Saranapala Maha vidayalaya” take the road to the school and you will reach this cascade.
Maduwalla kadura ella
Passing Kalugahakadura one needs to proceed along Ellalanda road for 1.5km’s to reach this. Though I came across a cascade the image given in the magazine didn’t tally with it. After enjoying this cascade I decided to end the day and proceed towards Badulla where I planned to spend the night at.
On day two I was accompanied by Nalinda and both of us were determined to conquer a local mountain but the heavy mist made us rethink about it. So plans were changed and we decided to do some cave exploration in Meegahakivula.
Akurukaduwa Lime stone cave and its cascades
Would you believe that if I said there is a huge lime stone cave in Meegahakivula. Yes there is one and it has only a small entrance like a window. To reach this one needs to get to Meegahakivula and take the Ketawatta road for one mile. After you reach Akurukaduwa Gramaseva office take the rd towards Galkada and get in touch with J. M. Jayasundara (only few knows how to reach the cave). There is a paddy field where infinity could be seen and at the edge of it is a drop. Along that drop there is a “Siyambala tree” the cave is on the right hand side of this and few feet below on the slopes. The entrance is so small that you would neglect it that’s why you need a guide. This is the largest limestone cave I have been to and the find was worth every effort. There is a beautiful cascade which starts at the left hand side of the paddy field and we did manage to see it when we lost our way initially.
Binge landa(බින්ගේ ලන්ද) galge
One needs to go forward 2km’s along above mentioned Galkada rd and climb a mountain to reach this huge cave which lies on top of it. You would need a local guide for this though. It is said that this cave has connections with Denagala RMV, Ran puhulawala, Walapane, Senkadagala and Seegiriya. It is also believed that king Walagamba used this during his rebellion.
Godunna Randunnagoda sri Sumangalaramaya
From Meegahakivula we reached 21st mile post and headed towards Kandeketiya. From Kandeketiya we went 12km’s towards Gala uda and reached Godunna. The temple is 1km away from the main road. This is believed to be done by king Walagamba. It is said that the king once was searching for his bow at this place and asked his soldiers “Ko dunna”? Later this area got its name called Godunna because of that incident. There are few ruins and the rock pile in the temple is believed to be the place where the king’s bow was once hidden.
Mundagamuwa bo tree
While returning back towards Kandeketiya we came across the ancient bo tree close Mudagama. This tree is believed to shelter the tired “Mundaka Bamuna” 2000 years back. Now there is a temple at this location with the bo tree.
Kiri wehera (Unanagamuwa RMV) – Kandeketiya
Passing Wewetenna junction and proceeding towards Kandeketiya will bring one towards Kiri wehera where an ancient temple could be found. This temple has been modified by many kings and this is one of the sacred grounds in the region. There are pillars and many ruins in the premises. The small ancient sthupa and the new bell shaped sthupa with a lovely backdrop make this place worth a visit.
Ran puhulawala(රන් පුහුලාවල)
From Godunna while proceeding towards Kandeketiya we took the Tennepanguwa road and reached a junction called Wewatenna. And from here we took the road towards the Ran puhulawala power house. Passing the power house and taking the uphill road will take one over the spill. Few meters away from it is a foot path to the left which ends in Badulu oya. At this location Ran puhulawala and its cascade could be seen. This seems to be a nice location to camp during the dry period. It is believed that a Goddess with a golden Gourd (puhul) fruit can be viewed at this place.
Kandeketiya Maluwegoda RMV
From Kiri wehera and 1Km towards Kandeketiya there is a road to Thennepanguwa. We took this road for 14km’s and came to a sharp left bend (better to ask from locals) where a road branched to the right. This took us towards this ancient temple. The temple seems to be influenced by Anuradhapura and Kandy eras. The old sthupa is now covered by the new one and ancient monoliths could be seen scattered around. The old “chatra” stone of the sthupa is also seen at the premises. There has been a “sandal wood” statue here once but now one could notice only its base stone. The image house with the modern day Budhdha statue is one of my favorite attractions at this temple.
Buduge kanda RMV
The road towards Thennepanguwa was a very scenic one and the hair pin bends one had to tackle was more than the famous 18 bends at Hasalaka. Passing Thennepanguwa we came across an acute right bend and from there to the left was the road which will take one to Buduge kanda (better to ask directions from locals since everyone knows the place). After a 4km ride along this road we reached the ancient temple. At this temple there is a large caved image house and this is the main attraction at the temple. The paintings belong to Kandyan era and out of them the paintings about hell has an important position since this is the second place in SL where you could see those (can’t recall the other). There is a large Buddha statue in this cave which has suffered few attacks from relic hunters.
Kolongahamadiththa(කොලොන්ගහමදිත්ත ) ambalama
After visiting the temple we headed towards Badulla via Soranathota and on the way we came across Kolongahamadiththa ambalama too. We reached Badulla at around 5pm where I said adios to Nalinda and went towards Monaragala to end my unplanned but successful trip to Wiyaluwa.