Daulagala Tampita Viharaya is a tiny shrine built on pillars in middle of the Daulagala town in close proximity to Embekke Devalaya and Lankathilaka Raja Maha Viharaya. You would also find the popular Daulagala Ambalama in the town itself.
A Tampita Viharaya is a structure built on a wooden platform which rests on number of stone stumps usually 3-4 feet tall. The roof is held by a structure built of timber and the walls are generally made of wattle and daub. These buildings were a popular religious architectural design during the Kandyan period.
The Tampita Viharaya at Daulagala is erected on four stone pillar stumps built on a approx 2 1/2 feet high platform filled with gravel. The roof extends up to the edge of the platform and the weight of the roof is borne by six pillars rising from the edge of the platform.
The uniqueness of this structure is that there are no temples in the vicinity. Thus this Tampita viharaya might have been a private temple of a noble family of the Kandyan kingdom similar to the Lewke Tampita Viharaya or the Makehelwala Keppetipola Tampita Viharaya.
Access to this tiny temple is through an insignificant alleyway between 2 shops on the on the Araththana road which starts at the Daulagala Ambalama structure. After traveling about 700 meters down this road, you will come across the archaeology department board as seen below. Travel down this alleyway which opens to a small land planted with tea and black pepper. This path directly ends at a small house and you will still not see this structure.
There is foot path to the right just before this house but its barely visible due to non use. Turning on this foot path you will see the outline of this small building though the trees.
Minimarupitiya Tampita Viharaya
During the ancient Kandyan period, there was a unique type of vihara called the “Tampita Vihara”, also known as “Deva Matha Viharaya“. “Tampitha Vihara” is a temple on pillars. Its most prominent feature is that it is mounted on monolothic pillars or dwarfed rock pillars.
This type of viharaya that stood on raised platforms of wood standing on stone pillars was constructed this way in order to prevent white ants or other vermin from entering it and damaging it.
“Tampita Vihara” has yet another name- the “Deva Matha Vihara“. Deva here means timber and matha means amidst a vihara of timber. On a recent tour around the interior of Kandy, not far away from the city, I came to know that there are only two such Deva Matha Viharayas in the Uda Nuwara and Yata Nuwara areas.
These archaic monuments are preserved by the Department of Archaeology. In my ramblings around Kandy, I was fortunate to come across one such Deva Matha Vihara at a place called Meenimarupitiya (its derivation being a place where a murder had occurred in the past) in Eladetta about seven miles from Kandy on the road to Dalugala.
The superstructure of the Minimarupitiya Tampita Viharaya is composed of wattle and daub and is square in shape.
The height of the doorway is about four feet and its dimensions are 10 feet by 15 feet, standing on six stone dwarf pillars. The doorway is so small that one has to bend down as if in obeissance, to enter the Vihara. Such Deva Matha Viharas enshrine Buddha statues and are places of worship. The walls are adorned with murals and the roof is thatched with flat tiles.
There is a gilted statue of the Buddha in a sitting position made out of terra cotta which is similar to ones found in Gadaladeniya and Lankatillake viharas in the vicinity. Exquisite designs depicting Jataka stories cover the walls while on the ceiling there is a painting of flowers and creepers with tendrils which is fast deteriorating.
Behind the Minimarupitiya Tampita Viharaya is a large bo tree with bowers that have given shade to many.
Interestingly, the home gardens of the villages are abundant in pepper vines which are seen festooning the jak, mango and coconut trees. Sadikka is also found in abundance.
Alternate names : Bogahakotuwa Viharaya , Minimarupitiya Tampita Viharaya, Araththana Tampita Viharaya, Arattana Tampita Viharaya
- Tampita Vihara Heritage of Sri Lanka
- Ancient Heritage Sites of Sri Lanka
- Other Places of Interest Within Close Proximity
Map of the Daulagala Araththana Tampita Viharaya
The map above also shows other places of interest within a approximately 20 km radius of the current site. Click on any of the markers and the info box to take you to information of these sites.
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Driving Directions to Daulagala Araththana Tampita Viharaya
Route from Daulagala to Araththana Tampita Viharaya
distance : 700 m
Travel time :15 minutes
Time to spend : 15 mins
Driving directions : see on google map