Kurusa Palliya(Shrine of the Holy Cross), Thoduwawa Beach and Thaniwella Devalaya

By : Dinesh Deckker
Contact the Author : dineshdsd@gmail.com | 0716- 818740
Year & Month Number of Days Crew Weather Transport
Aug, 2011 1 5 Sunny Car
Trip Route
Kadawatha->Ganemulla->Ja-ela->Marawila->Kurusa palliya->Thoduwawa Beach->Along A4->Thaniwelle Dewalaya
Travel Tips, Travel Notes and Special remarks
  • Starting early is an advantage
  • When visiting sacred places dress decent
  • Leave only footprints

This is dedicated to My Crew and My Lovely Wife without you all this has not been possible.

It was drizzling in the morning but we hoped and prayed the day to become a sunny one. The long awaited journey to the Chilaw began around 5.30 from Ganemulla. We used shortcuts to get to the Ja-ela on A4 road. The weather seems to be fine beyond this point and it gave us hope to have a great journey. Till we reach Marawila we didn’t stop else where. Our good friend Pradeep and his family joined with us on this journey and he was a value addition to the trip as he knew all the roads in that area.

After reaching Marawila we had to take a left turn from A4 road. You won’t get lost as there is a board on the A4. Anyway after traveling for about a KM we arrived at the Shrine of the Holy Cross, Marawila. The shined was indeed an unusual one. It was an open church in the middle of a cemetery. There were no places to sit. Beside the walkway there was sand on either side. It was calm and quiet. There were few devotees praying. As a catholic first I prayed to the Holy Father and after that explore the premises. Many people who suffer from incurable diseases come to pray and they believe it will be cured.

In 1947 there was a disease similar to a skin rash spreading along the coastal villages including Marawila, Mudukatuwa, Katuneriya and Ulhitiyawa. It was incurable and was spreading fast in the skin. A mother, who could not bear to see her child in agony and pain due to the wounds, prostrated herself at the feet of the Holy Cross and pleaded for the cure of her child. Suddenly she was inspired to bring a bucket of water. She washed the feet of Our Lord in the Crucifix and with that water bathed the child. She made the child to drink the water too.

The following day to the utter surprise of the mother, the child was totally healed. She ran to her neighbours and spread the news of the miraculous cure. One by one the neighbours flocked around the Holy Cross and petitioned for the healing of their sick and put water or oil on the feet of Our Lord and applied it in the body and they experienced healing. Ever since, the devotees were strengthened with faith in the Holy Cross. When plagued by incurable disease, the people went to the shrine to plead for a cure.

Irrespective of religion the pilgrims started coming to the shrine to get the blessings of healing.

Source: Daily News


Half an hour later we decided to leave the premises to visit our next destination. We went straight on the same road and took a right turn and after traveling for about 2KM we reached Thoduwawa Beach.

It was a beautiful beach in front of Club Palm bay Hotel. The lagoon and the beach are side by side. We spent there around 45minutes before leaving to our next destination.

We used shortcuts to get to A4 road after visiting Thoduwawa. If you are traveling from Colombo when you pass 62 KMs you will see a white colour Dewalaya on the right hand side, which is called Thaniwella / Thaniwelle Dewalaya. People believe it’s a very scared place and may stop there on their journey on A4. This dewalaya is prominent because of the Horse statue in front of the premises.
This shrine was constructed in memory of the popular ruler of the Kotte period who was known as Prince Thaniya Wallaba, son of King Weeraparakramabahu VIII. He was a great king with strong military power. He saved costal area from the south Indian invader Adi Rasa Rayan. Sakalakala Wallaba, his brother supported him. As the victory was so outstanding people considered King Thaniya Wallaba as Thaniwelle Deviyo. According to folk-lore he possessed such miraculous powers that enabled him even to fly through the air. There is a Bo tree which is more than 250 years old. The Horse was King Thaniya Wallaba’s vehicle and people believe he is still chasing behind enemies on his White Horse. The annual Nanumura Mangallaya is will be held in on August 25.

We are continuing our journey towards Kalpitiya and hope to meet you all with a New Exciting report.


Have a Safe Journey!

6 Responses to “Kurusa Palliya(Shrine of the Holy Cross), Thoduwawa Beach and Thaniwella Devalaya”

  1. Thanx Dinesh… Ada nam mata kiyavanne labune aluthma article ekak.. man me’ article eke oyaala visthara karala thiyena kisima thanak dakalavath ahalavath ne. thanx a lot…

  2. Hi Dinesh.

    Enjoyed your experience much.
    worried on not to participate the journey.

    Awaiting more reports



    • Thanks a lot Viraj..
      Yeah.. we missed you on this journey…
      12 Important places visited in a single day but it was a 400Km drive..

      There are plenty more reports to come

  3. As usual a very descriptive report. Felt as I have visited to all these places twice while reading the report!!!
    Keep writing!!!