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 Somawathiya Temple Sri Lanka - Things to do in Somawathiya Temple best places to visit in sri lanka Somawathiya Temple map

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Somawathiya Temple


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SOMAWATHIYA TEMPLE


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Somawathi Chaithya was built in 2nd century BC and this stupa is said to enshrine the right Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha. The Somawathi Chaithya is located about 20 km north east of Polonnaruwa, by the bank of the Mahaveli River ("The River of Great Sands") within the Sanctuary. The flood plains of Mahaveli River have been inhibited by a large number of wild animals ranging from elephants, wild buffalo, deer and other animals. This Chaithya(Pagoda) had been abandoned more than fifteen years due to the threat by war.

According to the ancient chronicles of Sri Lanka state that the very first Arahant of this country Ven. Aritta, visited the abode of Gods and brought back to Sri Lanka the Sacred Right Tooth of the Buddha. This Sacred Relic was handed to king Giri Abha and his consort Queen Somawathiya who was King Kavantissa's sister. Queen Somawathie dedicated to construct a Stupa in adoration of the Buddha at Somapura with consent of Arahath Mahinda and the King Giri Abha. It is believed that one of the only two tooth relics of Buddha existing in the world is at the Somawathiya and the other one is at the Dalada Maligawa, Kandy.

It is the very reasons that thousands of pilgrims pay their homage to this chaithya. Archaeologists have found four moonstones and flower pedestals excavating around the chaithya. In addition to these many buildings has been unearthed including a wall surrounding the stupa.

Out of the nine stone inscriptions found around this site, the most popular is the four inscriptions found on the Eric Swan rock. This rock can be seen few meters away from the road, about 100 meters before the main entrance to the temple. This rock was named Eric Swan Rock, because a photographer called Eric Swan, who was killed by a wild elephant near this rock.


 

Activities to do :


When you travel to this place, these are the activites and events that you can involved in