Friday, 30 April 2021

Konakalagala Ambalama

Konakalagala Ambalama
Photo credit: Google street view

The Konakalagala Ambalama is an old wayside rest situated in Konakalagala village in Kandy District, Sri Lanka. 

Ambalamas are traditional resting places built by locals to accommodate wayfarers who were travelling to distant places. They were also used as a place for people to gather, hold meetings and serve as a public place in society. During the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Ambalamas were spread all over the country. 
The Ambalama at Konakalagala is believed to have been built during the reign of King Vimaladharmasuriya II [(1687-1707 A.D.) De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009]. This is considered to be the first Ambalama found on the ancient route that ran between the Kandyan Kingdom and Trincomalee (Dasanayaka, 2018; De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009).

It is said that there was a note with a date on one of the wooden seats of this Ambalama, but it has been replaced during a later restoration (Dasanayaka, 2018). The woods that have been used in this building are apparently similar to those found in the Magul Maduwa in Kandy (Dasanayaka, 2018).

The structure
As the case of Godamunna Ambalama, this had also been built on a horizontal frame of four wooden beams (balanced on four rock boulders) and its roof was held by four pillars on the corners (Dasanayaka, 2018). During the beginning of the 20th century, it was expanded from all four sides by adding 12 more wooden pillars (Dasanayaka, 2018; De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). 

A protected monument
The ancient doss house (Konakagala Ambalama) located in Konakagala village situated in the Grama Niladhari Division of Konakagala in Akurana Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government gazette notification published on 16 August 2013.
1) Dasanayaka, R., 2018. Ambalama saha samajaya (In Sinhala). S. Godage & Brothers.  pp.68-70.
2) De Silva, N.; Chandrasekara, D.P., 2009. Heritage Buildings of Sri Lanka. Colombo: The National Trust Sri Lanka, ISBN: 978-955-0093-01-4. p.167.
3) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka: Extraordinary No: 1823/73. 16 August 2013. p.3A.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 2 January 2022
For a complete tourist map follow this link: Lankapradeepa Tourist Map


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