Galkanda Viharaya (Horampella)

Not to be confused with Galkanda Viharaya (Bambarenda)

Galkanda Viharaya, Horampella
Galkanda Purana Viharaya, also known as Galkanda Siriniketha Piriven Mula Maha Viharaya (Sinhala: ගල්කන්ද පුරාණ විහාරය),is a Buddhist temple situated in Horampella area in Minuwangoda in Gampaha District, Sri Lanka. 

As per the belief of locals, the history of this site is linked with King Valagamba (103,89-77 B.C.). There is a small drip-ledged cave known as "Len Viharaya" and inside it is a small Stupa which is considered to be the oldest monument of this temple. The Bodhi tree of the temple, according to folklore, is a sapling of Sri Maha Bodhiya at Anuradhapura. In 1909, a Bodhighara (a Bodhi-tree shrine) was constructed around this tree by a devotee named E.P. Samara Upasaka.

The Pattini Devalaya shrine of this temple is popular among devotees as it is believed to have been established during the reign of King Gajabahu I (114-136 A.D.).
The temple
The temple mainly consists of a Stupa, Bodhi tree, image house, preaching hall, library and monks' dwellings. The preaching hall of the temple was constructed by E.P. Samara Upasaka and his son E.P. Odiris Mudalali caused to build the library and Seema Malakaya buildings.

The facade of the image house of this temple is considered special as it has an architecture similar to a church. The three entrances of this facade have been decorated with a Makara Thorana (dragon arch) accompanied by the figures of guards. An artist from Beruwala named S. Silva is said to have designed the paintings of the image house. As it was constructed during the British colonial period, a number of British elements are found along with traditional Buddhist murals and sculptures. The Netra Mangalya of the Buddha images is said to have been done in 1911.

Diwela Sri Silavimala Thera was the head priest of this temple from 1896 to 1911. In 1913, a Pirivena for the education of Buddhist monks was established at this temple by the then incumbent Diwela Sumanasiri Thera.

Galkanda Viharaya, Horampella .
Location Map
This page was last updated on 18 February 2024

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