Bathalegala | Place to Hike & Camping in Sri Lanka

Bathalegala, also known as Bible Rock (Sinhala: බතලේගල) is a rock located in Hathgampola in the Aranayaka Division, Kegalle District, Sri Lanka (Abeyawardana, 2002). Rising to a height of about 797.96 m (2,618 ft.) above sea level, the rock has presently become a popular place suitable for hiking (Abeyawardana, 2002).

The rock is triangular in shape when it is viewed from the Aranayaka area (Abeyawardana, 2002). During the British Period (British Ceylon: 1815-1948 A.D.), the rock is called the Bible Rock because it has an appearance similar to the shape of a book/Bible (Abeyawardana, 2002). However, the view from Balana near the famous Kadugannawa Tunnel on the Colombo-Kandy main road is very popular among the people as it instantly reminds everyone the shape of the more famous Sigiriya rock.

According to folklore, Batalegala got its name because, a pot of rice has turned to a blood-red colour at this spot (Abeyawardana, 2002). In the Sinhala Language Batalegala can be interpreted as; Bata (rice): le (blood): gala (the rock). However, another story suggests that the rock is so named because it resembles the shape of a sweet potato (Abeyawardana, 2002).

Do you know?

1) Abeyawardana, H.A.P., 2002. Heritage of Sabaragamuwa: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Sabaragamuwa Development Bank and The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-575-077-7. pp.76-77.

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This page was last updated on 30 July 2023

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