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:: Bentota (Benthara) River, Bentota ::

City : Bentota

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Many of the rivers flowing through our country have been named in Pali, as mentioned in our chronicles such as the Mahavamsa, and Culavamsa. Among them is the Bentota Benthara river flowing through the deep south. About 38 miles away from the Colombo-Galle-Matara highway, this river is named in Culavamsa (Part 1) as Bhimathitha. It is derived from the Pali word ?Bhima?, which means fearful/dreadful, while ?thitha? means ferry/port.

Legend has it that the river is said to be haunted by a demon lying in its murky depths, ready to prey upon anyone crossing. Old timers living along the banks of this river have recalled how their ancestors, before they crossed the river, invoked the blessings of the guardian deities such as Kataragama and Vishnu for a safe crossing.


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