Nagala Raja Maha Viharaya (Nikawewa)

Not to be confused with Nagalakanda Archaeological Site

Sri Nagala Viharaya
Sri Nagala Raja Maha Viharaya, also known as Nagalakanda Viharaya and Nagalavehera (Sinhala: ශ්‍රී නාගල රජමහා විහාරය), is a Buddhist temple situated in Nikawewa near Polpithigama in Kurunegala District, Sri Lanka. The site is located about 48 km north of the Kurunegala town.

A large number of ruins belonging to the period between the 3rd century B.C. and 18th century A.D. are scattered across an area of 40 acres on the eastern slope of the Nagala mountain (Kumari, 2019). The ruins are mainly found on five terraces and on the first terrace, the monks' dwelling and the recently built Dhamma school building are located. Several broken pillar fragments are also found on this terrace. On the second terrace, a house sheltering an Inscription Written in Brahmi Scripts is located (Kumari, 2019). Stone pillars, flower altars, lavatory stones, Sandakada Pahana, Muragal and several other artefacts are also found scattered throughout this terrace.

The old Stupa is located on the third terrace of the temple premises. Conserved in the 1990s by the Department of Archaeology, the Stupa is surrounded by old flower altars, Siri Pathul Gal and a headless and armless dolomite statue of Buddha about 1.2 m in height (Kumari, 2019). The forth terrace which is overgrown by the vegetation is dotted with the ruins of ancient structures such as stone pillars, Sandakada Pahana and Muragal. A long flight of steps that begins from the forth terrace provide with visitors the access to the fifth terrace which consists of two cave temples constructed during the Kandyan Period (Kumari, 2019).

Sri Nagala Viharaya
1) Kumari, A. M. R. S., 2019. Aithihasika Naga Pudabima (In Sinhala). Dayada, Issue 13. Department of Archaeology. p.6.

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This page was last updated on 28 November 2023

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