Sri Mahendrarama Rajamaha Viharaya (ශ්‍රී මහේන්ද්‍රාරාම රජමහා විහාරය වූ මණ්ඩපොළ සිප්හල)

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Sri Mahendrarama Rajamaha Viharaya is considered to be the Mandapola Education Institute of ancient days. This centre is said to have operated similarly to a university and the remains of this first education institute in Sri Lanka built around the 6th century BC still can be seen in the Mandapola area.

With the arrival of Vijaya in 543 BC, a Brahmin called Pandula belonging to the Yaksha tribe saw the local industry and the centuries old local knowledge was under threat of being lost forever. As a solution, he built this education centre to provide education on various weapons fighting with swards, bow and arrow, javelins and shields, fighting techniques such as amgam pora and ilangam pora,  various charms, medicine, agriculture etc.

Pandula has also built a tank close to the institute and farmed paddy to support the centre. Another tank was built about 2 miles away from the education centre to support the board of educators in the school. This area was called Madulla (මඬුල්ල) which is now called the Madulla (මදුල්ල) and the tank is called Madulla Wewa today.

This centre was turned into a temple during the Anuradhapura Era and became known as Sri Mahendrarama Rajamaha Viharaya. Even today you can see a rare Garunda Pashana Pilimaya, Ancient Yanthra Gal where relics were deposited, granite flower alters, guard stones, balustrades and remains of 2 storied buildings at the temple premises.

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Map of Sri Mahendrarama Rajamaha Viharaya

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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

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Travel Directions to Sri Mahendrarama Rajamaha Viharaya

Route from Colombo to Sri Mahendrarama Rajamaha Viharaya
Through : Negombo – Madampe – Panduwasnuwara
Distance : 116 km
Travel time : 2.5 hours
Driving directions : see on google map

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