Hatthikuchchi Aramic Complex ( Rajanganaya Ruins) – හත්ථිකුච්ජි විහාරය

RATE THIS LOCATION :1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 3.67 out of 5)
Loading...

Located in the picturesque landscape covering 300 acres, the Hatthikuchchi Aramic complex ( also referred to as Hatthikucchi, Hastikuchchi, Hasti Kuchchi, and Rajanganaya Ruins) dates back to the 3rd century BC. But this location is most famous as the place where exiled king Sirisangabo offered his own head to a pheasant. Although King Sirisangabo ruled the country only for two years (251-253 AC) and didn’t build any significant monuments or irrigation systems nor won any war, he is one of the most known kings in the history of Sri Lanka.

After the death of King Sanghatissa, his son, Sirisangabo was given the throne and his more ambitious brother Gothabaya was given the post of treasurer. Many didn’t expect Sirisangabo to be successful as a king with his Bodhisattva like lifestyle. Gothabaya too realizing this, was bidding time until the king fell apart with his honesty and gentleness. But to everybody’s surprise, he was very successful with his rule, and Gothabaya who could not wait any longer decided to overthrow him by force.

The armed rebel group led by Gothabaya started to march into the capital and King Sirisangabo hearing this, decided to leave the kingdom to his brother rather than see bloodshed in the war. So he left the kingdom unnoticed and disguised with only a piece of cloth to filter water. He ended up in the place now known as Hatthikucchi and lived a life of a hermit in meditation.

Meanwhile, his brother Gothabaya couldn’t believe his luck and became the ruler of the country without any opposition. But feeling that he was never safe while the Sirisangabo was alive, offered a large reward for anyone who would bring his brother’s head. This was followed by many killings by people who were trying to collect the reward.

During this period one poor pheasant who saw Sirisangabo in this hermitage immediately recognized him as the ex-king and thought about the reward money and how it would help his family. Sirisangabo immediately realized that the man was thinking about the reward and how it would make his life easier.

The Ex-king not wanting to make the poor pheasant a murderer, took out a sword cut his head, and offered it to the pheasant. The pheasant carried the head to the king and collected the reward.

Until recently the location where Sirisangabo gave his head was thought to be Attanaglla Temple in Gampaha District but now most accept that this place is the Hatthikuchchi. This area was called the Rajangana Ruins until 1979 when the Department of Archaeology put up a board identifying this place as Hatthikuchchi. The reason for this name is supposed to be an inscription of the word “Atti-Kucch” on a rock. It is believed this area was called Attanagalla at some time in history as some inscriptions in this area refer to a place called “Athara Galla”. Considering all the evidence and the location, it is believed that the Attanagalla referred to in historical documents is the Hatthikuchchi as it is called now.

The ruins and the stone inscriptions at the site date from the 3rd century BC to about 10 th century indicating that this complex was born at the same time Buddhism was brought to the country by Mahinda Maha Thero. According to the chronicles, there have been four main Buddhist monasteries in the country at the early stages. They were Mihinthale, Sithulpavwa, Dakshinagiri and Hattikucchi. Although this location was a highly developed Buddhist center for over 1300 years, this location is now most popular due its association with King Sirisangabo.

The main buildings which have been identified are a Vatadage (a stupa house), an image house, a poya house, some stupas, an alms hall, a semicircular building, an image house restored during the Kandy period, ponds, meditation chambers used at the very early stages of Buddhism, many of stone inscriptions and many cave dwellings used by meditating bhikkhus. The whole complex covers an area of over 300 acres. Although the stupa in the vatadage is in a dilapidated state the remains of the vatadage can still be seen including two impressive stone doorways. Between the vatadage and the steps to the rock, there is a pathway to the right into the jungle. By walking about 150 metres through the path you will come to an area where there are remains of mediation chambers made out of 3 slabs of rock. These are said to have been used in the early stages of Buddhism.

At the foot of the rocky mountain is an image house made using a natural cave with a reclining Buddha statue. This statue is thought to have been done during the Kandy period and the stupa house itself by the villagers during a later stage.

At the top of the mountain is the oldest stupa in the complex. Near the dilapidated stupa, there is a carving of a man running carrying something in his hand. This could be the picture of the pheasant carrying the head of Sirisangabo to the king to collect the reward.

From the top of the mountain, you can get a wonderful view of the jungle below with numerous strangely shaped boulders spread across a large area including a hanging rock incredibly balanced on the edge of another rock.

Since his area is located in a jungle elephants can visit this area, especially during the dry season.

Alternate Names : Hatthikucchi Ruins, Hastikuchchi Ruins, Hasthikuchchi Ruins, Hasti Kuchchi Ruins, Hasthi Kuchchi Ruins , Rajanganaya Ruins, Attanagalla

Also See

Map of Hatthikuchchi Temple Complex ( Rajanganaya Ruins)

Please click on the button below to load the Dynamic Google Map (ගූගල් සිතියම් පහලින්)
.

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.

Driving Directions to Hatthikuchchi Temple Complex (Rajanganaya Ruins)

Hattikucchi Vihara Complex also known as Rajangana Ruins is located between the Anuradhapura and Kurunegala road which runs through Padeniya and Galgmuwa. It is about 40 kilometers away from Anuradhapura.

If traveling from Kurunegala, take the Putlam Road (A10 route) and travel along the road up to Padeniya. From Padeniya, turn to the right towards Galgamuwa (on to A28 route). Passing Galgamuwa and after passing the 37th kilometre post You will come to a junction called Mahagalkadawala (Maha-gal-kada-wala) (sometimes referred to as Gal-kalla). Turn left from there (you will see a board directing you towards Hattikucchi). After traveling about 3 km another board will direct you to turn left again. The Aramic Complex is about ½ km down this road.

If traveling from Anuradhapura use the Galgamuwa road (A28 route) and pass Thulawa and Thambuthegama you will reach Mahagalkadawala as you pass the 36th-kilometre post. The roads are motorable and cars can easily go up to the designated car park area.

Route from Colombo to Hatthikuchchi Temple Complex Route from Anuradhapura Railway Station to Hatthikuchchi Temple Complex
Via : Kelaniya – Ambepussa – Kurunegala – Padeniya – Mahagalkadawala
Distance : 180 km
Travel time : 4 hours
Driving directions : see on Google map
Via : Kelaniya – Ambepussa – Kurunegala – Padeniya – Mahagalkadawala
Distance: 180 km
Travel time : 4 hours
Driving directions : see on Google map

© www.amazinglanka.com

0-09 m (80) 10-19 m (69) 20-29 m (42) 30-39 m (47) 40-49 m (23) 50-99 m (43) Ambalama (152) Ancient Anicuts (31) Ashtapala Bodhi (5) Attraction Article (3) Attractions (200) Beaches (7) Biosphere Reserves (3) Botanical Gardens (3) Bridges (34) Caving (7) Church (11) Cities (9) Destinations (16) Dethis Pala Bodhi (15) Devalaya (41) Flora and Fauna (43) Forts (49) Heritage (1603) Heritage Article (28) Historic Events (5) History (7) Hot Springs (9) Hydro Heritage (85) Irrigation Article (4) Islands (15) Kovil (25) Lighthouses (27) Memorials (28) Mile Posts (6) Mosque (3) Museums (8) National Parks (22) over 100 m (15) Pabbatha Vihara (10) Personalities (7) Pillar/Slab Inscriptions (35) Pre Historic Burial Sites (19) Prehistory (37) Ravana (12) Reservoirs (44) Ruins in Wilpattu (5) Ruins in Yala (24) Santuaries (7) Sluice Gates (11) Stone Bridges (18) Strict Nature Reserves (3) Survey Towers (13) Tampita Vihara (238) Travel (3) View Points (9) Walawwa (12) Waterfalls (375) Wildlife Article (24) Yathuru Pokuna (4)

Abhayagiri Monastery (19) Ampara District (191) Anuradhapura District (194) Badulla District (105) Batticaloa District (19) Colombo District (62) Galle District (56) Gampaha District (49) Hambantota District (99) Jaffna District (69) Kalutara District (47) Kandy District (177) Kegalle District (146) Kilinochchi District (10) Kingdom of Anuradhapura (80) Kingdom of Kandy (14) Kingdom of Polonnaruwa (55) Kurunegala District (110) Maha Vihara (14) Mannar District (47) Mannar Island (10) Matale District (63) Matara District (26) Mihintale (22) Monaragala District (70) Mullaitivu District (19) Nuwara Eliya District (108) Polonnaruwa District (107) Puttalam District (24) Ratnapura District (142) Trincomalee District (43) Vavuniya District (28) z Jaffna 1 (20) z Jaffna 2 (22) z Jaffna 3 (11)

Leave a Reply