Kala Wewa wildlikeorganization 3

Story of the Kala Wewa

This reservoir was built by the King Dhathusena who ruled the country during 454 – 473 CE in the 5th century. Tamil invaders who arrived from South India ruled the north part of the country during the period from 429 to 455 AD. King Dhathusena defeated the invaders and united the country and then he wanted to rebuild the irrigation system by constructing several tanks, canals, etc., in and round the kingdom of Anuradhapura. Its circumference is 40 miles (64.4 km) and has a total area of 7 square miles (18.1 km2) at full capacity]. Length of the dam is 22,572 feet (6,879.9 m) and the height is 48 feet (14.6 m). The reservoir served as one of largest irrigation tanks in ancient time.

Story of the Kala Wewa

King Dhathusena was very keen on information with regard to a spot very suitable to construct a tank to be the massive one in the history of Sri Lanka. There are some folklore on how the king was able to find a place for the tank he imagined. There was a man called Kadawara who left his family and went to live in the jungle due to his wife's unbearable and repeated insults and disrespects towards him. After some years in the jungle he was well accustomed with wild animals and lived with a flock of deer. One day a hunter suddenly noticed this strange man living with animals in the jungle; went to the palace and told the king that it seems that this strange man lives in the forest in order to guard an unknown treasure there. King sent his army to catch him. Kadawara was caught and brought to the palace. When the king questioned him of the treasure, Kadawara revealed his true story and told real reason for his leaving the city and living in the jungle. Then king asked him of any interesting thing he had seen while living in the jungle. Kadawara said, "No sir, I have not seen anything interesting but in a brook somewhere in the jungle, water is being blocked by the flora called Kala that has been grown across that stream. According to this legend, it was the spot wherein the king created the Kala Wewa.


The way to Anuradhapura via Dambulla reaches Kekirawa in the Kekirawa Divisional Secretariat and from there the distance to the tank is 6 miles (9.7 km).

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