A landmark of sacred legends
Translating to ‘mongoose hill’ in the regional vernacular of Tamil, Keerimalai is the legacy of a local legend where a sage cursed with a face likened to mongoose, was miraculously cured with the waters of the Keerimalai Sacred Water Spring. Today, the spring lives on as an ancient pond filled with throngs of local men and boys who splash about in a picturesque location overlooking the sea, while a separate bathing area is available for women behind it.
The Keerimalai Naguleswaram Kovil is also located just next door, and is worshipped as one of Sri Lanka’s sacred Pancha Ishwarams. These kovils are shrines dedicated to the Hindu god, Shiva, known as the destroyer of evil. Legend has it that the same cursed sage built the Naguleswaram Kovil over thousands of years ago, as a gesture of gratitude of the healing powers of the water spring.
Keerimalai rests on the northern edge of Sri Lanka’s coastline, and is located just over half an hour away from North Gate by Jetwing via road. The Naguleswaram Kovil and sacred water spring are within walking distance of each other, but are also situated in close proximity to Dambakola Patuna – allowing you to combine these attractions in a single journey on your travels.