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1834658_sThe small finshing village of kirinda is blessed with a golden beach which creates some spectacular views. There is a rocky outcrop on which historical legend reveals profundity of our history. Climb the rocky stair leads up to the temple and look around some magnificent views of the desolate coast with its long stretch of sand dunes and the ocean beyond. On a clear day the lighthouse on the Great Basses Reef appears like a needle in the far distance. That’s not all, for if you reverse your gaze you can see Tissamaharama in detail, especially the glistening dome of the Tissamaharama Dagoba.

With such an atmosphere, Kirinda is the appropriate setting of one of those popular legends that constitute early Sri Lankan history, the legend of Queen Viharamaha Devi A well known story handed down from the 2nd century BC tells of a tsunami that flooded Kelaniya, on what is now the outskirts of modern day Colombo near Wattala. In the legend, King Kelanitissa boiled a Buddhist monk alive in oil because he suspected him of trying to pass a love letter from his brother to the Queen. Both his ministers and subjects were horrified. Furthermore, so the legend goes, the gods were annoyed and caused the ocean to flood the land. Overcome with remorse, the King decided to atone for his sacrilegious act by making a sacrifice that would impress on his people the sincerity of his repentance as well as appease the gods.

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