Kaludiya Pokuna of Mihintale (මිහින්තලේ කලුදිය පොකුණ)

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Amongst its serene, tranquil beautiful forest and bolder clad environs we find some of the earliest examples of Sinhalese hydraulic civilization in Mihintale. The monastic establishment in fact brought about an ideal motive for the development of an impressive network of irrigation channels with the use of both natural and artificial ponds and waterways.

Out of the many ponds and waterways that have graced this area three ponds and bathing places can be identified even today;

  1. Naga Pokuna
  2. Sinha Pokuna and
  3. Kaludiya Pokuna

They are no more the life line of the community of monks that may have depended on them for their daily chores. Yet today they have more of a historic value. It stands witness to our forefathers’ skills of hydraulic engineering blended with landscaping and the fine art of sculpture.

Kaludiya pokuna

Situated at the foot of the western slopes of Mihintale it is the largest of the ponds. Most experts believe that Kaludiya pokuna may probably be the ancient Porodini Pokuna mentioned in the tablets of Mahinda IV.

Kalu-diya pokuna, literally translated means the black water pool. It is said that the name evolved out of respect to the sombre reflections of trees and boulders of the neighboring forests and mountains, and is true to its description at most times of the day.

The complex of well planned buildings around the pond is witness to an advanced hydraulic civilization with artificial moats running through some of the buildings; the bath houses, the toilets within the buildings.

Around the pond are the remains of an arama consisting of a stupa, uposathaghara or poya ge, the building where monks met at regular intervals to perform certain rituals pertaining to their conduct or behavior, cankamana patha, promenade for walking, parivena and pasada, residential cells janta ghara, bath house and vacca kutti lavatory.

A cave dwelling found in a slight depression in the vicinity is noteworthy. Tucked so cozily under a massive overhanging of a boulder, smooth granite slabs and brick are blended together to form the enclosing walls instead of the usual brick and mortar. Some scholars believe that this would have been a the bathing house attached to a bathing pokuna in front, now silted up.

Access to this place is possible from the Kandy main road, almost directly opposite the entrance to the Rajagiri kanda caves.

by Kishanie S. Fernando
Daily Mirror

Also See

Map of Kaludiya Pokuna of Mihintale

ගූගල් සිතියම් පහලින් – Please click on the button below to load the Dynamic Google Map –

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 Kaludiya Pokuna of Mihintale

Mihinthalawa can be reached through many routes from Colombo. The two main routes are through Puttlam (Puttalama) and though Kurunegala. Traveling from Puttalam you will pass scenic Wilpattu area. the From Kurunegala there are two main routes to Mihintale. 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 Mihintale (A3) Route 02 from Colombo to Mihintale
Though : Negombo – Chilaw – Puttalam
Distance from Colombo :231 km
Travel time : 5.15 hours
Driving directions : see on google map
Through : Kurunegala – Dambulla
distance from Colombo : 224 km
Travel time : 4.5 hours
Driving Directions : see on google maps
Route 03 from Colombo to Mihintale Route from Anuradhapura to Mihintale
Though : Ambepussa – Kurunegala – Padeniya – Thambuthegama
Distance from Colombo :231 km
Travel time : 5 hours
Driving directions : see on google map
Distance from Anuradhapura :15 km
Travel time : 30 minutes
Driving directions : see on google map

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