Ketawala Ambalama

Ketawala Ambalama
Photo credit: Google street view

Ketawala Ambalama (Sinhala: කැටවල අම්බලම) is an old wayside rest situated in Ketwala town in Badulla District, Sri Lanka. 

Ambalamas are traditional resting places built by locals to accommodate wayfarers who were travelling to distant places. They were also used as a place for people to gather, hold meetings and serve as a public place in society. During the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Ambalamas were spread all over the country.  The Ambalama at Ketawala is one such place that is believed to be more than a hundred years old (Priyadarshani & Gunasena, 2017). People who came on pilgrimage to nearby Muthiyangana Viharaya is said to have stayed at this place (Dasanayaka, 2018).

The structure
The square-shaped Ketawala Ambalama is relatively small and consists of a single open space surrounded by a short wall. The height of the building 6.5 ft. (Dasanayaka, 2018). The four-sided roof which is held by four pillars at the corners has been tiled with semi-cylindrical clay tiles (Sinhala Ulu). Presently, this building is used as a bus stop (Dasanayaka, 2018).

A protected monument
The Ketwala Ambalama located in Uva Ketawala village in Divisional Secretary’s Division of Hali-Ela, is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government notification published on 8 July 2005.

1) Dasanayaka, R., 2018. Ambalama saha samajaya (In Sinhala). S. Godage & Brothers.  pp.117-118.
2) Priyadarshani, S.A.N.; Gunasena, I.P.P., 2017. Pauranika Sthana Ha Smaraka: Badulla Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology. ISBN: 955-9159-48-8. p.34.
3) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1553. 8 July 2005.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 17 September 2022

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