7°03'49.5"N 80°03'02.8"E

පිලිකුත්තුව රජමහා විහාරය

Pilikuththuwa Raja Maha Viharaya

Buddhist Heritage Sites

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Western Province



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Pilikuththuwa Raja Maha Viharaya

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Pilikuththuwa Raja Maha Viharaya  Vihara is an ancient Cave temple situated in Pilikuththuwa, Sri Lanka. It is located on the Gampaha - Wathurugama road approximately 3.8 km (2.4 mi) away from the Miriswatta junction and 1.6 km (0.99 mi) from the ancient Buddhist temple, Maligatenna Raja Maha Vihara. 

The temple has been formally recognised by the Government as an archaeological site in Sri Lanka. History From the archaeological evidence, it is believed that this area has been inhabited since prehistoric times. Caves with drip ledges prove that the temple may have been used during the periods of 2-3 century BC by the Sangha as their abodes. According to the legends connected with this temple, king Valagamba (89-77 BC) used to stay in this historical place from time to time during the invasion from South India. Uruwala, Maligatenna, Warana, Miriswatta and Koskandawala cave temples, situated in the vicinity of the Pilikuththuwa temple are said to have been formed from one major temple complex in the early Anuradhapura period. The temple The Pilikuththuwa temple is considered as one of the Buddhist temples in the country with the highest number of drip ledged rock caves. It is said that this temple has 99 rock caves with drip ledges, spreading about 200 acres of total area. As at today, 78 of caves have been identified. Beside the rock caves, inscription with pre-Brahmi characters belonging to the 3rd century CE, drip ledged caves, the pond made with Cairn of stones, ancient mould creeper, wooden bridge belonging to the Kandyan period, the Dagoba with its natural Vatadage, ancient reservoir, roads, water pools, and natural water ponds, increase the historical importance of this site. 

On 1 November 1996, the archaeological department declared the image house of the temple as a monument under the government Gazette number 948. In 2002, all the caves with drip ledges, the Awasageya (Bhikkhu dwellings), the wooden bridge, the pond, the Dagoba with drip ledged cave and stone inscriptions belonged to the temple were declared as protected monuments.

The Dharamsala building (preaching hall) was included in the list on 15 April 2016.


References & External Links

  • Wikipedia - Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA)

  • "Protercted Monument List 2012-12-12" (PDF). Department of Archaeology. 12 December 2012. Retrieved 13 December 2016.

  • The Upcountry Repository of Buddhist Art - The Tampita Vihara of Sri Lanka' - G.R Disanayake

  • Temple on pillars: A study of the Tämpita Vihāras in the Kurunegala District - University of Kelaniya - Sri Lanka

  • Tempita Vihara - Wikipedia

  • Sri Lankawe Tampita Vihara By KUSUMASIRI VIJAYAWARDANA

  • "Protercted Monument List 2012-12-12" (PDF). Department of Archaeology. 12 December 2012. Retrieved 13 December 2016.

  • බෞද්ධ විහාරාංග සම්ප්‍රදායේ උඩරට කලාගාරය - ගංගා රාජිනී දිසානායක

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