SRI LANKA

ANCIENT CITIES & MONUMENTS

By ANDORA ENTERPRISES

ANURADHAPURA *  POLONNARUWA *  SIGIRIYA *  YAPAHUWA *  KANDY

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ANURADHAPURA

King Pandukabaya built his capital city ANURADHAPURA in the 4th century B.C. His long and fruitful reign of 70 years is a land mark in the History of Sri Lanka. This monarch built his capital city with gates, suburbs, streets, places of worship, a separate quarter for the "Yonas"(Greeks or Foreigners), hospitals, waiting rooms for the sick, residences for holy men, a system of sewerage, a fresh water reservoir, Abaya Tank (Now known as Basawakkulama) for the supply of fresh water to the citizens, and a great labour force provided with living quarters, necessary for the hygienic maintenance of an expanding city. For its supervision and care, he appointed a mayor. From then onwards there were mayors in the capital. He also established village boundaries over the whole island.

 Ruwanweli Saya   Guard Stone

 

During the 3rd Century B.C. Buddhism was brought to Sri Lanka by Thero Mahinda the son of King Asoka of India during the reign of King Devanampiyatissa. The temples and monuments built during this period remain up to this day some in its original glory. Also a sapling of the Bo-tree under which Buddha attained enlightenment was brought and planted in this city. This is the oldest relegiously authenticated tree in the world and is still the most venerable treasure of the Buddhists of Sri Lanka The Sri Maha Bodhi.

Places of interests: Isurumuniya temple, Jethawana Dagaba, Abayagiri Dagaba, Thuparama Dagaba, Ruwanweli Dagaba, Lankarama Dagaba, The Holy Bo-Tree Sri Maha Bodhi, Samadhi Buddha Statue, The moonstone, The Twin Ponds. Tissa Wewa. Basawakkulama Wewa. Mihinthale.

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POLONNARUWA

 Watadage Gal Vihare

The early sign of human occupation at Polonnaruwa dates back to 2nd Century B.C. In the Cronicle Culavamsa it is stated that King Aggabodhi IV (667-685 A.D.) was the first Sri Lankan king who lived in Polonnaruwa. Anuradhapura was about a thousand years old at this time and the old kings favoured the new city of Polonnaruwa. In 1072 King Vijayabahu made Polonnaruwa the capital city of Sri Lanka. King Parkramabahu established his kingdom at Polonnaruwa in 1161. Polonnaruwa is largely Prarkramabahu's city. He rebuilt storng fortifications against any cholian attacks and built the Sea of Parakramabahu. He declared "Not even a little water that from the rain must flow into the ocean without being made useful to man". The remains of his seven story palace, the council chamber and the island garden still fascinates the visitors as well as the Sri Lankans. The Alhana Pirewena, Pothgul Vehera, Jethawana Monastry and the Galvihare sulptures, are monuments to his religious generosity.

Palace of Parakramabahu.

The Palace of Nissankamalla, his council chamber, the ancient sluice gates, the Siva Kovil, Thuparama, Pabulu Vehera, Lankathilaka, Kiri Vehera, Gal Viharaya, Lotus Pond and the Thiwamka Pilime Ge are some of the ancient monuments which has attracted many visitors to the island.


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SIGIRIYA

Sigiriya

Kassapa built a fortress at Sigiriya and his palace at the top of the Sigiriya rock. The ancient cronicles say that this city and palace worthy to behold. The remains of this city, the place and the world renown frescoes is a sight still unbelievable.

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YAPAHUWA

King Buwenekabahu had his kingdom at yapahuwa. Another fortress built with a rock. The sculptures and the coins found here shows that this king had friends far and wide from the eastern part of the world as well as the western part of the world.

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KANDY

 

The last of the Sinhala Kingdoms and the hill capital of Sri Lanka. The tooth relic of lord buddha was looked after by the king and Kandy became the last resting place of the most valuable treasure of the Buddhists. The architecture and the paintings have changed from kingdom to kingdom. Kandyan art is still unique and beautiful. Kandy is also famous for the Pageant in August with more than hundred elephants and dancers accompanying the Buddha relic which paraded along streets of Kandy. It is the most colourful event. Thousands of people from all over Sri Lanka and abroad flock the streets to watch this pageant.

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© R.Maithripala - Andora Enterprises
Updated on 20th January 2016
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