Beruwela lighthouse (also called Barberyn Lighthouse) is located on Barberyn Island on the southwest coast of Sri Lanka. An exciting 10-minute boat ride from the town of Beruwela transports you to Barberyn, a place removed from the hustle and bustle of people, cars and traffic. The island is a slice of paradise nestled in the Indian Ocean.
Three-quarters of Barberyn Island is covered with coconut trees, Plumeria flowers, mango and cashew trees, and the cooling shade of buffalo grass. Exotic birds, reptiles and insects roam the island. The grand yellow lighthouse tower stands majestically at the edge of a 30-metre cliff. The lighthouse itself is 122 feet high and the light is visible for 19 miles.
Barberyn is in fact the name which was used as an alternative to Baruwela as a whole by the British during their occupation. According to Henry Cove in 1910, this island was called “Welmaduwa” (වැල්මාදූව) in Sinhalese and according to Francois Valentijn in 1824 the island was called Verberin by the Dutch. The lighthouse whs called Barberyn Lighthouse. Over time the Sinhalese name Beruwala prevailed for the town but the name of the light house remained the same and Welmaduwa island itself came to known as Barberyn Island. This island is also being called Crows Island now.
According to the British Gazette published on September 17, 1889 the lights of the Beruwala Barberyn Island (Crow Island) Lighthouse were switched on in early November 1899, over 130 years ago. The light was a quick flashing white light every 20 seconds elevated at 150 feet from the sea level. However now the light goes on from 6.30 pm until 6.30 am. The light rotates for one minute each time and directs sailors.
Five keepers take turns to watch the lighthouse.
- 1889. The London Gazette – September 17, 1889. London: Thomas Harbison and James William Harbison Printers, p.4995.
- Cave, H., 1910. The Ceylon Government Railway: A Descriptive and Illustrated Guide, Mainly Extracted from the Author’s Larger Work “The Book of Ceylon”. London: Cassell and Company Limited, p.56.
- Arasaratnam, S., 1978. Francois Valentijn’s Description of Ceylon. 1st ed. LONDON: Hakluyt Society London, p.116.
- Lighthouses of Sri Lanka
- Attractions of Sri Lanka
- Heritage of Sri Lanka
- Other Places of Interest Within Close Proximity
Map of Beruwala Barberyn Lighthouse
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|Route from Colombo to Beruwala Lighthouse
|Through : Galle Road
Distance : 57 km
Travel time : 2 hours
Driving directions : see on google map