Padikemgala Viharaya

Padikemgala Raja Maha Viharaya (Sinhala: පඩිකෙම්ගල රජමහා විහාරය) is a Buddhist temple situated in Suriyawewa near Mahagalwewa Reservoir in Hambantota District, Sri Lanka.

This temple is believed to have been built during the reign of Mahanaga, the brother of King Devenampiyatissa [(247-207 B.C.) Abeyawardana, 2004]. 

The ruins
Padikemgala is considered the largest monastery found outside the ancient capital of Tissamaharama (Abeyawardana, 2004). The remaining monastic ruins at the site indicate that it was probably a temple of the Pabbatarama style. The Pathimaghara (image house), Uposathaghara (chapter house) and Bodhighara (Bo tree house) are the main ruined structures that have been identified on the premises. Of them, the ornate Bodhighara is the only octagonal-shaped one found so far in the country (Abeyawardana, 2004). The Bodhi tree that was growing here probably had been planted in a special  Patra (bowl).

An archaeological reserve
The land plot named Padikemgala Puravidya Sthanaya (Anurekhana-anka H/S/RY/99/354 paper 355 Pimbura lot no. A, B, C: consisting of 29.16 hectares) situated in Mahagalwewa village in the Divisional Secretary’s Division, Suriyawewa is an archaeological reserve, declared by a government Gazette notification published on 20 November 2001.

1) Abeyawardana, H.A.P., 2004. Heritage of Ruhuna: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Colombo: The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-575-073-4. pp.107-108.
2) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. no: 1213. 20 November 2001.

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This page was last updated on 27 April 2023

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