Rathna Prasada (Jewel Palace) of Abhayagiri Monastery – රත්න ප්‍රාසාදය

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Monolithic pillars of Ratnaparasada
Monolithic pillars of Ratnaparasada

This is the Uposatha house of the Abhayagiri Vihara Complex built by King Kanitta Tissa (192-194 AD). What Lova Maha Prasada was to Maha Vihara complex, Rathna Prasada is to Abhayagiri. The competition of these two sects of monks can be seen from the size and name of the buildings. Even the names seem to be competing with each other. When Maha viharians called their building the The Copper Palace, The Abhayagians called theirs the Jewel palace. The size too seems to be no second to the Loha Maha Paya. The size of this building can be guessed even today by the gigantic stone pillars that stand today. Until recently this site was called the elephant stable due to the monolithic pillars on the site.

In the 8 th century king Mahinda II rebuilt this on splendor scale with many storied and installed Buddha statue made out of gold. But all these treasures was plundered by south Indian Pandayans in the time of king Sena I (833-853 AD) but was again recovered by king Sena II (853-887 AD).

The guardstone at the inner entrance to the building is one of the best examples of such carvings in the Anuradhapura Era.

Also See

Map of Rathna Prasada (Jewel Palace)

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Driving Directions to Rathna Prasada (Jewel Palace)  at Anuradhapura

Anuradhapura can be reached through many routes from Colombo. The two main routes are through Puttlam (Puttalama) and though Kurunegala. Traveling from Puttlam you will pass scenic Wilpattu area. the From Kurunegala there are two main routes to Anuradhapura. The most common route is through Dambulla. The other route is though Galgamuwa. Out of all the routes, the commonly used is the Kurunegala – Dambulla route (Route 2).

Route 01 from Colombo to Anuradhapura

Route 02 from Colombo to Anuradhapura

Through : Negombo - Chillaw - Puthlam
distance from colombo :213 km
Travel time : 3 hours
Driving directions : see on google map
Through : Ambepussa - Kurunegala - Dambulla
distance from Colombo : 221 km
Travel time : 3.15 hours
Driving Directions : see on google maps

Route 03 from Colombo to Anuradhapura

Route from Kandy to Anuradhapura

Through : Ambepussa - Kurunegala - Padeniya - Thambuthegama
distance from colombo :213 km
Travel time : 3 hours
Driving directions : see on google map
Through : Katugastota - Matale - Dambulla
distance from Colombo :139 km
Travel time : 2 hours
Driving directions : see on google map

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