Parakrama Samudra is such a construction built in Polonnaruwa by King Parakramabahu the first who ruled there from 1153 AD to 1153 AD. The Parakrama Sea or Parakrama Wewa originally consisted of five large reservoirs, which relieved the pressure of the main dam. In addition, a number of small reservoirs were built around the primary reservoirs to feed water and carry excess water.
Sri Lanka has two major monsoon seasons, which last about three months. The rest of the year is dry and hot except for a few showers. Due to the lack of regular water, this climate can have a devastating effect on those who make a living from agriculture. Parakrama Samudra was one such solution to the problem of water scarcity. In an attempt to alleviate this problem, many ancient kings built water-regulating reservoirs.
The Main Reservoirs of the Original Parakrama Samudra:
- Thopa Vewa
- Eramudu Vewa (Katu Vewa)
- Dumbuthula Vewa
- Kalahagala Vewa
- Bhu Vewa
The length of the lake is 14km (8 miles). The outside height is 12.2 m (40 ft). The average depth of the lake is 25 feet. To this day, Parakrama Samudra irrigates more than 18,000 acres of neighboring plantations. It’s not as big as it used to be, but there’s a lot to appreciate because some of the older structures on the shore still exist and are waiting to be explored. What makes this artificial lake more attractive to tourists is its peaceful and exotic backdrop.