Bakmitiyawa in Damana is an extreme remote village in the Ampara District. Away from civilization, the villagers are chena farmers totally depending on the Duwiligala Oya which flows across their village for their water needs. Bakmitiyawa village has been established over 200 years ago by few families who fled to hide after the 1818 Uva–Wellassa rebellion against the British. The village has slowly grown but the Tamil LTTE Terrorists had brutally killed about 60 villagers during the height of the terrorist activities. With the terrorists activities most villagers had fled from this area during the last 30 years.
Access to this village is from Kandaudapanguwa on the Siyambalanduwa – Wadinagala road or from Pannalagama. From Kandaudapanguwa its a 17 km of gravel roads through paddy fields and chenas and a 7 km of gravel road from Pannalagama.
It is said that the name the villagers in this area has been distilling from Mee flowers thus the name “Mirahala” (Meerahala) was coined to the area. Mirahala Rajamaha Viharaya (Meerahala Rajamaha Viharaya) is an ancient temple complex in Bakmitiyawa with a history going back as far as 1st century BC to the times of king Saddhatissa.
The ancient stupa and other archaeological remains of the Mirahala Rajamaha Viharaya was declared as a protected archaeological site by the Government with the Gazette issued on 10th October 2014, and describes the location as follows ;
“Ancient Chaithya at Meerahala ancient vihara premises and other archaeological evidences in Meerahala village in Grama Niladari Division W/25/B Bakmitiyawa in Divisional Secretary’s Divisiion, Damana in Ampara District in Eastern Province. (latitude 07º 38350′ N and longitude 081º 65840’E).”
Map of Mirahala Rajamaha 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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Travel Directions to Mirahala Rajamaha Viharaya
Route from Ampara to Mirahala Rajamaha Viharaya
|Through : Damana|
Distance : 47 km
Travel time : 1 hour
Time to spend : 30 mins
Driving directions : see on google map