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Location: Anuradhapura, North Central Province, Sri Lanka

 

UNESCO World Anuradhapura Ancient City Sri Lanka

Firstly, Anuradhapura is one of a major city in Sri Lanka. Also One of the most beautiful UNESCO Heritage site. Located north central province of Sri Lanka. Famous for its well-preserved ruins (Stupa, Buddist statues, olf palace) of an ancient Sri Lankan civilization. It was the third capital of the Kingdom of Rajarata, following the kingdoms of Tambapanni and Upatissa Nuwara. Actually, this city, now an ancient UNESCO Heritage World Site, was the center of Theravada Buddhism for many centuries. Anuradhapura was to continue for thousands of years longer as the national capital. But it became more and more vulnerable to the pressures of South Indian expansion and the city was finally abandoning.

 

Anuradhapura ruwanweliseya Ancient stupa

Anuradhapura Attractions

 

Jethawanaramaya

Second in, Jethawana Stupa is the largest stupa in Anuradhapura Heritage site of Sri Lanka. It was originally 400 feet (122 meters) in height, this stupa is third largest of the stupa in Sri Lanka. Jethawanaramaya still remains the tallest of its kind in the world.

Jethawanaramaya was built by King Mahasena of Anuradhapura (276-303) completed by his son Sirimeghavanna. This is believed to be the chamber where the remains of the great thero rest.

Kuttam pokuna (twins ponds)

Then, Kuttam Pokuna means for Twin Ponds in native Sinhala Language and located in Anuradhapura Heritage. These ponds believe to build in King Aggabodhi time and one of the remaining monument about old Sri Lankan creativity. The primary purpose of this pond is to supply water for The monks who live in Abayagiriaya Aramaic Complex. Those two ponds are in two different sizes. Water flows from a larger one to the smaller one. Both the ponds have steps, which leads to the Bottom.

 

Samadi Buddas statue 

Mahamevuna Uyana. Anuradhapura, “Samadhi Budu PilimayaThis limestone image of Lord Buddha is dating from the 3rd Century. Seated under a Bo tree, depicts the Buddha in the serene state of Samadhi, or deep meditation. The kindness of Lord Buddha flows through the half-closed eyes, Watch as long as you like. This is the finest Meditation Buddha statue in the whole World.

 

Abayagiriya 

Then, Abhayagiri stupa belongs to the ceramic complex of Abhayagiriya Viharaya which was constructed in the reign of King Vattagamini Abaya (commonly known as King Valagamba) in the 1st Century BC.

Today, the main attraction of this Aramaic complex is the massive Abayagiri Stupa which stands at 74.98 meters to the tip of the damaged spire. It is the second largest stupa in the island today. So, according to the 5th-century traveler Chinese monk Fa-Hsien’s descriptions, this stupa has been 400 feet (122 meters) in height and has been decorated with gold and silver and studded with all kinds of jewels od course.

This monument carries a special importance in ancient Sri Lankan Stupas as the top portions of the original stupa (known the “hatharas kotuwa”) still survives after thousand years of negligence, giving a glimpse to what it would have looked like thousand years ago.

Today there is a massive effort by the archeological department to restore this stupa to its original glory without destroying the archeological value. The work has been painstakingly slow due to the lack of funds.

 

 

Moonstone 

Known in Sinhalese as Sandakada Pahana (Lamp), it is roughly translating into English as moonstone. The name is based on its shape and design. The first Moonstone was creating during the latter stage of the ancient Anuradhapura Kingdom.

The carvings of the semi-circular stone slab were the same in every Sandakada Pahana. A half lotus was carving in the center, which enclosed by several concentric bands. Indeed, the first band from the half lotus is decorating with a procession of swans, followed by a band with an intricate foliage design known as liyavel. So, the third band has carvings of four animals; elephants, lions, horses, and bulls. These four animals follow each other in a procession symbolizing the four stages of life: growth, energy, power, and forbearance. The fourth and outermost band contains a carving of flames, usually interpreted as representing a fire altar.

 

Guard stone 

Also, the guard stone or “muragala” was one of an association of three aspects of sculpture that adorned the entrance to buildings in ancient times, the other two being the moonstone (Sandakada Pahana) and balustrade (Korawak Gala).

The guard stones, which provided a support to the heavy stone balustrade, were plain in the beginning. Zoomorphic sculptures of multi-headed cobras have been found at the sluices of reservoirs, and at the four corners of relic chambers enshrined in “dagabas”

 

Lankarama 

Then, Lankarama is a stupa building by King Valagamba, in an ancient place at Galhebakada in the ancient kingdom of Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka.  The ruins show that there are rows of stone pillars and it is no doubt that there has been a house built encircling the stupa (vatadage) to cover it.

The round courtyard of the stupa seems to be 10 feet (3 m) above the ground. The diameter of the stupa is 45 feet (14 m). The courtyard is circular in shape and the diameter is 1332 feet (406 m).

 

Thuparamaya 

Also, Thuparamaya is the oldest Stupa in Sri Lanka. It Built after introducing Buddhism to Sri Lanka. So, this Thuparamaya, built by King Devanapiyatissa, enshrines the sacred collar-bone of the Buddha. The columns around the stupa were a part of the walkway that supported a roof which covered the sacred edifice. So, the interior of such a structure must have been the stunning expression of wood engineering and of the most skillful craftsmanship.

The edifice’s conical design, unique in the architectural history of the world, continues to be discussed and debated by scholars and scientists. Interestingly, the shapes of the vessel were the module to economize on the expensive fluid. The name Thuparamaya is a residential complex for Bhikkhus.

 

Ruwanweliseya

Then,  Ruwanwelisaya is a stupa, It is building by King Dutugemunu C 140 B.C., who became lord of all Sri Lanka after a war in which the Chola King Elara, was defeating. So, this is one of the “Solosmasthana” (the 16 places of veneration) and the “Atamasthana”…  This stupa is one of the world’s tallest monuments, standing at 103 m (338 ft) and with a circumference of 290 m (951 ft) The Kaunghmudaw Pagoda in Sagaing, Myanmar is modeling after this stupa.
The stupa was a ruin in the 19th century. After fundraising efforts by Sinhalese bhikkhu, it renovated in the early 20th century. Indeed, the Ruwanveli Seya Restoration Society founded in 1902 and the final crowning of the stupa took place on 17 June 1940.

Sri Maha Bodhiya

Also, the Sacred Bo tree; Jaya Sri Maha Bodhiya of Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka is the oldest living tree in the documented history of the world. It is a sapling from the historical Bodhi tree under which Buddha enlightened. Actually, this is planting in 288 BC. So, it Recorded the oldest tree in the world.  Sanghamitta Therini, a sister of Arhant Mahinda – who introduced the Teachings of the Buddha to Sri Lanka.

 

Isurumuniya

Finally,the Meghagiri Vihara which called the “isurumuniya”. So, this was belonging to the abayagiriya Vihara in the 4th Century A.D.