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Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara, Colombo

(4.7/5 based on 380+ reviews on the web)
Enjoy the spiritual atmosphere at Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara, a Buddhist temple near Colombo. Buddha himself reputedly visited the original temple during his third trip to Sri Lanka (thus dating it to before 500 BCE). Destroyed several times during its turbulent history, notably by Indian invaders and the Portuguese, the temple was restored in the 18th century by the Dutch. Explore the complex and immerse yourself in the rich history and calm ambience. Step inside the quiet interior to see the numerous paintings and statues that depict the life of Buddha. Plan your Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara visit and explore what else you can see and do in Colombo using our Colombo trip generator.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I had the chance to "experience" with a sri Lankan family, who introduced me to the rites... It was a moment very hard.
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  • If you are in Colombo, you must visit this sacred temple. It is easily accessible by taxi. For outsiders, I think, though not remember correctly, there is small donation. 
  • One of the most sacred places in Sri Lanka, one must go to this temple once in their lifetime. The location near Kelani river together with the long and proud history makes you understand the importan...  more »
Google
  • Very nice place, has a very calm feel to it. We walked around the complex and went inside the temple as well. The walls inside have amazing paintings. Overall, a great experience.
  • කැළණිය රජමහා විහාරය The Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara or Kelaniya Temple is a Buddhist temple in Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, seven miles from Colombo. The Chief Incumbent (Chief Priest) is Venerable Professor Kollupitiye Mahinda Sangharakkhitha Thera. Buddhists believe the temple to have been hallowed during the third and final visit of the Lord Buddha to Sri Lanka, eight years after gaining enlightenment. Its history would thus go back to before 500 BCE. The Mahawansa records that the original Stupa at Kelaniya enshrined a gem-studded throne on which the Buddha sat and preached. The temple flourished during the Kotte era but much of its land was confiscated during the Portuguese empire. Under the Dutch empire, however, there were new gifts of land and under the patronage of King Kirthi Sri Rajasingha the temple was rebuilt. It was refurbished in the first half of the 20th century with the help of Helena Wijewardana. The temple is also famous for its image of the reclining Gautama Buddha and paintings by the native artist Solias Mendis which depict important events in the life of the Buddha, in the history of Buddhism in Sri Lanka, also incidents from the Jataka tales. It is the venue for the Duruthu Maha Perehera procession each January. An 18-foot stone statue of the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara has been erected at the temple.
  • The Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara or Kelaniya Temple is a Buddhist temple in Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, seven miles from Colombo. The Chief Incumbent (Chief Priest) is Venerable Professor Kollupitiye Mahinda Sangharakkhitha Thera. Buddhists believe the temple to have been hallowed during the third and final visit of the Lord Buddha to Sri Lanka, eight years after gaining enlightenment. Its history would thus go back to before 500 BCE.
  • this is a historical value temple the best place to meditation and the views are nice.
  • This is a very famous Buddhist Temple. Lord Budha is said to have blessed this temple.