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:: Sooriyawewa Hotwater Springs, Embilipitiya ::

City : Embilipitiya

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The world over such hot springs were named as healing mineral thermal waters. The reason being that these thermal waters contain medicinal properties to cure ailments like skin eruptions and other rheumatic pains. Even our ancients, particularly the Buddhist monks living in ancient cave hermitages had made the best use of these healing hot springs for body and skin ailments.

Till the emergence of the Uda Walawe multi-purpose project in 1962/63, the Mahapelessa hot springs was unknown. Under the Uda Walawe project the whole of the Walawe basin got transformed into a vast developed area teeming with multitudes of farming communities filled with sprawling rice fields, a network of agro-based industries, and still another network of roads ramifying in connecting with the main trunk roads.

In these by-gone years over half a century ago, Mahapelessa hot springs was sunk in the labyrinth of the jungle tide. It was then accessible through the hard terrain of Ambalantota-Ridiyagama government farm, via the Madunagala Aranne (the ancient forest hermitage). From there one had to trudge by foot about three miles.

The other route was an adventurous one off its beaten track by crossing the Walawe ganga by boat through Liyanagastota irrigation anicut and landing at Begigamtota. From there the hike is 2-3 miles through the forest glades of groves of Jule trees (Woodapple). The famed literary scholar cum Assistant Government Agent - Leonard Woolf (1908-11) of Hambantota district, in his printed diaries had mentioned the arduous trek how he had hacked through the dense jungle to reach Mahapelessa hot springs after crossing the Walawe ganga by boat at Bogigmatota.

From Embilipitiya to Sooriya Weva is about 12 miles away. Off Sooriya Weva deviation along the Veharagla lies its Irrigation Branch bund road. From recent years (under the Asian Bank Development Fund) with Japanese aid a fine carpeted roadway off Padalangala (on the main Pelmadulla-Embilipitiya-Nonagama Highway, had been constructed road that leads to Sooriyaweva falling into Mirijjavila (close to Hambantota) on the main trunk road of Colombo-Galle-Matara-Hambantota-Tissamaharama.

Along this carpeted road leading to Sooriya Weva and Mirijjavila, at its 6th mile post is another deviation on a gravel road being the access road to Mahapelessa Hot Springs covering about 2 miles. So the closest distance from Embilipitiya on the carpectted road to the Hot Springs is about 12 miles.


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