Home to four main religions, Sri Lanka’s Muslim population is about 9.66 % of the country. We have several types of Muslim communities in the country – Malays, Moors, Memons, Bohras and Khojas all who follow the religion of Islam. However, all Muslims do not visit the same place of worship. The majority of Muslim populations lives in Colombo, Kandy, Beruwela, Galle, Matara and Batticaloa. Here are a few important religious places in Sri Lanka for Muslims.
- Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque or Colombo Red Mosque was built in 1908. Located in Pettah, this mosque is also one of the oldest in the city. They say the red and white mosque resembles the Jamek Mosque in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia constructed in 1910. This is a popular tourist site when doing the Colombo city tour and the mosque welcomes people from all religions.
- The Grand Mosque is said to be nearly 1100 years-old. It was rebuilt after it was destroyed in 1520 and is Sri Lanka’s oldest mosque.
- Dawatagaha Mosque is among the most visited mosques in Sri Lanka. This 150-year-old shrine is the resting place of Muslim Saint His Holiness Sevedina as-Sheikh Usman Siddique Ibn Ahdurrahman. Legend has it that the Saint visited from Arafat, Arabia and visited Adam’s Peak.
- Kechchimalai Mosque also known as Masjid-ul-Abrar is an important landmark in Beruwela. This is one of the oldest mosques in Sri Lanka dating back to 1024 AD. Located at the end of the Beruwela Port. The mosque is constructed in ancient Arabic architecture and each year pilgrims from all over visit to pray.
- Abrar Mosque is officially known as the Masjidul Abrar Jumma Mosque of Beruwela. The mosque, said to be found on 920 AD it is one of the oldest mosques and has a capacity of 3000 people.
- The Fort Meeran mosque is also known as Galle Fort Mosque and Meeran Masjid. It is of Baroque Architecture (Portuguese Style) and was built around 300 years ago. The mosque, which was refurbished 120 years back to date consists of a stained glass and lovely floor tiles that can be found here. Built by the early Arab traders, this mosque serves as an important landmark for the Muslim community in Galle.
- Muhhiyadeen Jummah Masjid in Matara is popularly known as White Mosque ans is an important place of worship for Muslims in Matara and around the country.
Besides the mosques mentioned above, the following two mosques are also important places of worship for Muslims in Sri Lanka:
- Kandy – Hanafi Mosque
- Batticaloa – Auliya Mosque
Many of Sri Lanka’s mosque architecture is influenced by Arabic, Turkish, Indian and Iranian styles and designs. Basing yourself at one of our properties in Beruwela and Galle is a good idea if you want to catch a glimpse of some of the Muslim places of worship.