Maamangeswaram Pillaiyar Kovil, Batticaloa

One of the oldest Hindu temples in Batticaloa as well as in Sri Lanka, situated around 3 km from the Batticaloa central town at Maamangam area along the Batticaloa-Palameenmadu Road.

According to some historical records and myths, this temple belongs to the period of 2nd to 3rd Century AD, and constructed at the place where Prince Rama had performed his prayers towards Lord Shiva during his search for Princes Seeta and had placed a handful of rice to denote Lord Shiva. This lump of rice had become a lingam and the area derived its name 'Maamanga-Easwara'.

According to an ancient book named "Mattakalappu Maanmium", the history of the temple is associated with the story of a Dravidian queen by the name of Aadakasavundary who ruled Batticaloa in the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD. This queen was supposed to have had a grotesque, ungainly appearance but when she bathed in the Maamangam river she became a very beautiful woman. Because this great lady- (Maa-exalted, mangai-maiden) bathed in the river it was renamed Maamangai nathi (river). The queen paid much attention to the temple and had restoration work done. That was a time when temples received Royal recognition and Maamanga temple too received the same.

The temple had the name of Maamanga Eashwara earlier, but for some reason, the name changed and is now known as Maamangam Pillayar. Thousands of pilgrims around the world gather at the Maamangam Pillaiyar temple during its annual festival known as 'theertham' falls during the months of June and July every year. At the end of the theertham, pilgrims take a bath in the pond located within the Kovil compound believing that all their sins are washed out.


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Latitude: 7.739952 Longitude: 81.672096 Elevation: 25 ft
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Kanthan Kathir

Hours Open

Early morning till night.

Seasons Open


Time Period Represented

2nd to 3rd Centuary

Visitor Fees

No visitors fee

Accessibility Notes

The temple is located around 3 km from the Batticaloa central town on the way to Batticaloa Light House on Batticaloa-Palameenmadu Road. There are signboards placed by the main road that will guide you. Can be accessible by tuk tuk, car, van, bick, bicycle and mini-buses. Roads are in good condition. 

Pet Friendly Notes

Please do not bring pet animals.

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