The Ketchimala Mosque is on the southwest coast in Beruwala. The
sound of the sea blends with the sounds of prayer when devotees flock to
The mosque is believed to have been constructed over a thousand years
ago. In fact, it is believed that the first Muslims to come from Arabia
settled down in Beruwela and that they built the Ketchimala Mosque in
The mosque is of ancient Arabic architecture. It stands tall and
white upon a rock surrounded by coconut palms. The mosque is completely
white except for the green doorways.
There are myths and legends with tales about the origin of the
mosque. One of them is the civilisation that was created around this
In the 12th century, a vessel came ashore on the South West of Sri
Lanka at Ketchimala in Beruwala with seven members of the royal family
of Hadramouth, Yemen.
They were Sultan Ashraff Waliullah, his five brothers and a sister.
One day, the chief priest of the Beruwala Mosque, Shaikh Abdul Cader bin
Shaikh Yoosuf was clearing the bushes around the grave of Ash-Shaikh
Then suddenly a thorn pricked his foot causing him severe pain. As he
rested for a while, he fell asleep. While asleep, Shaikh Ashraff
Waliullah, in a dream, asked the chief priest to allocate the piece of
land to him and put up a building there. Shaikh Abdul Cader put up a
cadjan building to cover the grave and set apart a small area for the
This news spread to the villagers. Ever since then the people of the
area began to respect the area much more than earlier.
Muslims, as well as non Muslims visit the shrine frequently from all
over the island. People had their wishes granted and their appeals
fulfilled by visiting the shrine.
They prayed for the Shaikh and recited the Holy Quran.
The devotees named this area 'Ketchimala' and that is how this mosque
got its name.
- Compiled by Husna Inayathullah