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Jethawanaramaya is a historic Buddhist temple located in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka. This ancient temple is a national treasure and one of the country’s most iconic and revered Buddhist monuments.
According to historical records, this temple was built by King Mahasena to enshrine the relic of Lord Buddha brought to Lakdi by the son of King Ashoka, the Indian emperor who spread Buddhism throughout the Indian subcontinent. The temple has built over 18 years, using more than 93 million bricks.
Jethawanaramaya is a striking example of ancient Sinhalese architecture. The temple has built in the shape of a stupa or dagoba, a hemispherical structure used to contain Buddhist relics. The stupa stands at a height of 122 meters, making it one of the tallest ancient structures in the world. The temple also features four entrances, each adorned with intricate carvings and statues of the Buddha.

The temple’s interior is equally impressive, with chambers and corridors leading to the central shrine room. The walls of the shrine room have adorned with exquisite frescoes depicting scenes from the life of the Buddha and other important figures in Buddhist history. In addition, the central shrine room is home to a golden casket, which contains the sacred relics of the Buddha.
Jethawanaramaya has played an essential role in the history of Buddhism in Sri Lanka. The temple was a center of Buddhist learning and scholarship for centuries, attracting pilgrims worldwide.
Unfortunately, the temple suffered significant damage during the wars that ravaged Sri Lanka in the 20th century. However, extensive restoration work has out recently, and the temple has been restored to its former glory. Today, Jethawanaramaya remains one of the most important Buddhist monuments in Sri Lanka, and it continues to be a source of inspiration and reverence for Buddhists worldwide. Jethawanaramaya is an extraordinary testament to the rich cultural heritage of Sri Lanka. This ancient temple stands as a symbol of the country’s deep spiritual roots and its enduring commitment to the principles of Buddhism. As one of the world’s most iconic Buddhist monuments, Jethawanaramaya is a treasure of immeasurable value, and it is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in the history and culture of Sri Lanka.


Useful Information

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  • Bring sunscreen, a hat, and water.
  • Carry a camera.
  • Respect cultural and religious traditions.


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