Magul Maha Viharaya (Yala)

Not to be confused with Magul Maha Viharaya (Lahugala)

Magul Maha Viharaya

Magul Maha Viharaya (Sinhala: යාල මගුල් මහා විහාරය) is a Buddhist temple situated in Yala National Park in Hambantota District, Sri Lanka. The site is located on the wayside of the Kirinda-Situlpawwa road.


The history of Magul Maha Viharaya runs back to the pre-Christian era. The Early Brahmi Inscriptions discovered at the place indicate that this site was an ancient Buddhist monastery since the early part of the Anuradhapura Period (Paranavitana, 1970).

Magula Maha Vihara Inscriptions

Period: 3rd century B.C.-1st century A.D.                   Script: Early Brahmi                  Language: Old Sinhala
Transcription: (1) Gamika-Yasopala-puta gamika-Mali (2) gamika-Mali-puta gamika-Tisaha lene
Translation: The son of the village-councillor Yasopala is the village-councillor Malin; the cave of the village-councillor Tissa, son of the village-councillor Malin.
Citation: Paranavitana, 1970.p.51.

The site is thought to be used as a fortress in the past (Nicholas, 1963). Also, rock paintings showing a few hand impressions have been found at this site (Kelum & Wickremasinghe, 2014).


1) Kelum, M.A., Wickremasinghe, H., 2014. Action Plan for Conservation & Sustainable Use of Palaeobiodiversity in Sri Lanka. Biodiversity Secretariat, Ministry of Environment & Renewable Energy. pp.30,69.
2) Nicholas, C. W., 1963. Historical topography of ancient and medieval Ceylon. Journal of the Ceylon Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, New Series (Vol VI). Special Number: Colombo. Royal Asiatic Society (Ceylon Branch). p.64.
3) Paranavitana, S., 1970. Inscriptions of Ceylon: Volume I: Early Brahmi Inscriptions. Department of Archaeology Ceylon. p.51.


1) 20180302-DSC00016 by Robert Lee is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

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This page was last updated on 8 January 2024

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