Ranchamadama Prehistoric Canoe Burial Site – රංචමඩම ආදී මානව සුසාන භූමිය

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Ranchamadama Prehistoric Canoe Burial Site at the Ranchamadama school

Ranchamadama Prehistoric Canoe Burial Site at the Ranchamadama school
Photo Source : Thuppahi’s Blog

Ranchamadama is a remote village in Kolonna DS in the Ratnapuara Distinct. In early 2000’s, when the Ranchamadama Vidyalaya dug its land for a foundation of a  new building, they discovered some unusual clay artifacts which began the journey of the discovering of the Ranchamadama Prehistoric Burial Site.

in 2007, archaeologists who carried out excavations of the site  discovered 6 clay burial canoes and 2 burial pits.   The clay canoes were oblong, built with a thin shell of burnt clay slabs. Since a about 1 meter of earth has been removed to flatten the natural land to build the school buildings, these burial canoes had been 1 meter below the present natural surface.  The burial  sites is thought to be spread over a 30×40 meter area underneath school buildings. The area excavated by archaeologists was 5×15 meters.

The clay canoes has had funerary urns. Each has had more than one urn, some canoes estimated hold 30 urns.but none have survived. Carbon dating of this site has placed this burial site to 1359  BC.

It was reported that the excavation at the school had been refilled, with just the top of the clay graves walls exposed. A large temporary shed had been built over the site for protection. A new school building had been constructed at a distance, to be able to demolish the old building and extend the excavation.

Traveling from Rathnapura towards Ambilipitiya, passing Udawalawe Junction and close to Maduwanwela Junction lies the road to the Ranchamadama village. The Ranchamadama School lies about 7 km along the inner roads of Kolonna in a valley bordered on its western side by several foothills of the Rakwana mountain range.

In 2009, more excavations were carried out on a site 2.7 km down this road which was believed to be an area where the pre historic settlement which the burial site was a part of, to understand the culture of the people who used the proto historic canoe burials at Ranchamadama school premises. For more information on this site check here.

Also See

Map of the Ranchamadama Prehistoric Burial Site

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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.

Zoom out the map to see more surrounding locations using the mouse scroll wheel or map controls.


Traveling Directions to the Ranchamadama Prehistoric Burial Site

Route from Colombo to Ranchamadama Prehistoric Burial Site (Up to the turn off to Ranchamadama Villagage)

Route from Ambilipitiya to Ranchamadama Prehistoric Burial Site(Up to the turn off to Ranchamadama Villagage)

Through : Ratnapura – Pelmadulla – Udawalawe Junction
Distance : 165 km
Travel time : 4,30 hours
Time to Spent ” 30 Mins
Driving directions : see on google maps
Through : Pelmadulla Road
Distance : 7  km
Travel time : 10 mins
Time to Spent ” 30 Mins
Driving directions : see on google maps

Posted in Heritage, Pre Historical Sites