Kuragala monastery complex can be sighted following a 2.25 km distance from 14th mile post in Balangoda-Uggal Kalthota route. This is a Buddhist traditional heredity which has seen the light and developed synchronous to archaic monasteries like Vessagiriya, Ritigala, Dimbulagala, Sithulpavuwa and Mihinthalaya.


Among the few caverns, which are famous in relation to their religious, national, cultural and historical value, this cavern holds an inimitable place second to none. According to folklore, the old name of this massive rock is “Kuharagala”, not “Kuragala”. Though this place is called Kuragala in common, actually there are two rock-apical namely Kuragala and Hituwangala, which is named by dint of its natural site with a natural concavity in the east slope of the rock. This rock concavity is 5-6.5 m deep and large enough for two people to go in at once.


Before reaching Kuragala one has to climb the old stair case made picking the rock and in a 100 m distance there is an annular cant. Thence from left the cave complex in which antecedent Brahmi letters inscribed can be accessible. Hituwangala cave is situated at the right side of this.


According to the Haputhale map, Kuragala can be described as the highest vertex in the precipice that spreads as a sloppy dyke in between 150-450 m contour lines directed to south and south-east. Following the map this precipice is long about 16 km from Bellangala Mountains that stretches to north-east and south-west directions to Diyainna, Kapugala and Bambaragala. This range of Rocky Mountains can be considered as a dense deposit of charnockite or “granite migmenise”.


When observing the vicinity of Kuragala, the sight from south direction is the hydro-merge of Chandrika Wewa and Udawalawa that resembles horizon. From south-east, two massive reservoirs namely “Bindinu Mankada” and Hambegamuwa can be sighted. From north-east direction, Haputhale range of mountains and Koslanda plateau add colour to the attraction.


There are only few caverns in the east Kuragala rock. The first cave is about 20 m long and 13.4 m high with dripledges. Also there is a long lithographed inscription with antecedent Brahmi letters including the phrases mentioned below.


“දතහස ප්‍රහලෙණෙ” (dathahasa prahalene) means “the cave offered by Daththa”. “පරුමකසමය” (parumakasamaya) means “the main cavern”.


There is another inscription written in double columns that would measure 10 m high in a separate cave in the same rock-hill.


“පරුමක (සු) ම (න) හ” (parumaka (su) ma (na) ha) means “the chief Sumana’s cave and….”


Currently, this sanctuary which was dedicated to Buddhist monks in day one, is now a major holly place of Muslims whose shrine is called by the name “Dathaththaselan” is situated on the second rock. Though this name is considered as one of their holly names it resembles the same word “Dathahasapada Lena” inscribed in a stone-inscription. According to old Sinhala, this cave might have been referred as “Dathahalana” before contributing it to monks. The rock in which the cavern is located might have been referred locally as “Daththaselan” in days of yore.


Ven. Gnanavimala thero shows the Muslims who came here have changed the Sinhala name as “daththaselan” into an easy way for them to pronounce. Some of them believe that these Brahmi letters are the letters of Koran. The location of this sacred place is not easy to reach. One of the stretches of caverns that could be found by descending a short distance from the peak to the declivity is denominated as the place of worship. There is also a very abstruse rock chasm. Many years ago, a devoted Muslim ecclesiastic has once gone into this chasm never to return. Thence they believe that this chasm ends in Mecca.


It is sited that Kuragala cave has a long history that has descended from the epoch of aborigines. Dispersed ruins have evidenced the fact Kuragala is not a secluded hermitage. Most of the mountain caverns in Sri Lanka belong to hermitage genre including Kuragala too, which descends from 2-1 centuries B.C. Today the terrain is designated as an archaeological conservation.


You don't have permission to register