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Rumassala Mountain

Rumassala is a hilly peninsula which lies between Unawatuna beach and Magalle bay. Rumassala, known to some as Buona Vista, is the subject of many legends. It features in the Ramayana, as the home of the beautiful Queen Sita, hidden in the jungle nearby. According to the Ramayana, during the battle between the Indian king Rama and Ravana of Lanka, the monkey God, Hanuman, was sent to the Himalayas to fetch a medicinal plant for the wounded Lakshman (Rama’s brother). He was unable to find the plant, so he removed a part of the Himalayan Mountain on which the plant was said to grow. He dropped a chunk at Unawatuna (‘here it fell’) to form the Rumassala headland. Many medicinal plants still grow on Rumassala, popular amongst ayurvedic doctors and medicine-men. A temple and statue dedicated to Hanuman can be found adjoining the Peace Pagoda complex at the edge of Rumassala.

There is a major magnetic anomaly near Unawatuna, which Sir Arthur C. Clarke attributes to a meteorite strike. It is rumoured that satellites lose their orbits, with unusual frequency overhead.

Some Portuguese rulers had a reputation in Sri Lanka as looters and pirates, and are said to have given false light signals from Rumassala to lure unsuspecting Arab trading ships onto the rocks.