Friday, May 14, 2021

Museums in Sri Lanka

National Museum of Colombo
Museums in Sri Lanka began with the establishment of the first museum in the country, the Colombo Museum, on 1 January 1877 (Embuldeniya & Karunarathna, 2019; Rambukwella, 2014). After that, as a result of the National Museums Ordinance, passed in 1942, several other museums were established such as at Kandy (1942), Jaffna (1943), Ratnapura (1946), Anuradhapura (1947) etc. (Rambukwella, 2014). These museums were further developed or expanded with time and in addition to them, museums with different themes such as history, archaeology, heritage were gradually established all over the country by three main government institutes; namely the Department of National Museums, Department of Archaeological Survey, and the Central Cultural Fund (Rambukwella, 2014). Besides the main museums administered by these institutes, several small museums and private collections are also maintained by different authorities, such as universities, companies, government institutions, provincial councils, district authorities and private owners (Rambukwella, 2014).

Museums under the Department of National Museums
Including the five main designated national museums, nine museums are administered by the Department of National Museums today (Rambukwella, 2014). Moreover, several school museums are also managed by them (Rambukwella, 2014).



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Museums under the Department of Archaeological Survey
The Department of Archaeological Survey of Sri Lanka manages twenty-seven archaeological museums (Rambukwella, 2014).

North Central Province

North Western Province
    1) Panduwasnuwara Museum (Regional)
    2) Puttalam Museum (Site)
    3) Yapahuwa Museum (Site)

Southern Province

Eastern Province

Central Province

Northern Province
    2) Vavunia Museum (Regional)


Uva Province
    2) Maligavila Museum (Site)


Sabaragamuwa Province



Western Province
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    Museums under the Central Cultural Fund
    Seven museums are presently administered by the Central Cultural Fund (Rambukwella, 2014).

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    Other Museums

      6) International Buddhist Museum, Kandy
      7) Tusker Raja Memorial Museum, Kandy
      8) Temple of the Tooth Relic Museum, Kandy
      9) Ceylon Tea Museum, Hantana
      10) Agriculture Museum, Gannoruwa

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    References
    1) Embuldeniya, P., Karunarathna, K.G.M., 2019. Significance of developing museums in Sri Lanka as tourist attractions: with special reference to national museums. EPRA International Journal of Research and Development. Vol. IV. Issue 2. pp.14-21.
    2) Rambukwella, M.W.C.N.K., 2014. Heritage representation in culturally diverse societies: a case study of the Colombo National Museum in Sri Lanka (Doctoral dissertation, School of Museum Studies). pp.130-140,401-423.
    This page was last updated on 19 June 2021
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