Visit the capital of the first Kingdom of Sri Lanka and be awed by the majestic landmarks


The city of Anuradhapura is home to some of Sri Lanka's most famous landmarks such as the great stupas

Anuradhapura is known as a “must visit” tourist attractions of Sri Lanka Holidays and is one point of the country’s Cultural Triangle. Anuradhapura, the greatest monastic city of the ancient world that date from the middle of the 5th century B.C. remained the proud seat of kingdom of Sri Lanka until the 11th century A.D. Today Anuradhapura, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is replete with renovated monuments, restored edifices, preserved ruins and historical sites where the archeological excavations are still being continued. Today, Sri Lanka Holidays foreign tourists and local tourists, who tour Anuradhapura, are simply unable to witness everything Anuradhapura has to offer, within the confines of a single day as Sri Lanka Tours have been cram-programmed. However the major attractions of Anuradhapura can be visited in a single day.

The History of the City of Anuradhapura

Anuradhapura Kingdom is the first established kingdom in Sri Lanka among the Sinhala people. Its rule began with King Pandukabhaya and the Kingdom flourished from 377 BC to 1017 AD. One of the important events during the Anuradhapura Kingdom include the introduction of Buddhism. This was made possible due to the strong union between King Asoka of India and King Devanampiyatissa of Sri Lanka.

From the origins as a settlement by Minister Anuradha in the 6th century BC, Anuradhapura was developed at a rapid pace & was consequently made the capital of the island by King Pandukhabaya (437-366 BC), who took a leaf out of the book of King Abhaya (474 BC), the builder of the first rainwater reservoir of Lanka. King Pandukhabhaya commenced the irrigation schemes in a larger scale providing the lifeline to the fledging Aryan civilization of the Sinhalese. By the mid-3rd century BC Anuradhapura’s fame for the excellence of its temple art and palace architecture, the ingenuity and skill of its irrigation engineers, noble elephants, precious gems, fine spices and its military prowess had spread as far as the Roman-Hellenistic world.


The Famous Buddhist Sites in Anuradhapura

The City of Anuradhapura has a huge number of places for you to visit. In the City there eight places which are called the Atamasthana, they are the main religious sites in Anuradhapura.

Jaya Sri Maha Bodhiya – Planted in 288 BC this is a branch from the Sri Maha Bodhi Bodhgaya, India where Buddha gained enlightenment. History recalls the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhiya as the sacred fig tree as the oldest living human-planted tree in the world. The wall was built during the time of King Kirthi Sri Rajasingha as protection from wild elephants.

Ruwanwelisaya – Construction of this temple was initiated by King Dutugemunu who didn’t live to see its completion. Some also call it the Swarnamali Chaitya and it is among the tallest stupas in the world .

Lovamahapaya is also known as the Brazen Palace or Lohaprasadaya as it has a roof of bronze tiles. Initially built by King Dutugemunu, the structure currently has only remains of the 1600-column structure. Archaeological evidence tells us that the structure once had nine storeys and would have accommodated least 1,000 monks.

Thuparamaya was  built during the time of King Devanampiya Tissa (247-207 BC) and was one of the first dagobas built after the introduction of Buddhism.

Abhayagiri Dagaba was built by King Valagamba during his second reign of succession. The dagoba is among the most immense ruin structures in the world.

Jetavanarama at 400 ft is recorded as the tallest stupa in the ancient world. The construction began with by King Mahasen and his son Maghavanna I saw through its completion.

Mirisawetiya Stupa that was constructed by King Dutugemunu after defeating Chola King Elara.

Lankarama that is another another stupa built by King Valagamba.


Ancient City Of Anuradhapura is a must-visit highlight of any visitor’s holiday to Sri Lanka.

Tell us your desires and we will make it happen. If you wish to speak with us and hear our thoughts you can contact us

The words of our previous clients are the best form of guarantee that we can give you about our services. Check out what they had to say…

Best trip organisers in srilanka

Just come back from a holiday to Sri Lanka with Ultimate Srilanka Excellent holiday organised for us and stress free. Excellent safe driver who quickly got to know us and tailored our visits to what we like to see.

Rebecca Broughton

View on Tripadviser
Lifetime Experience with Ultimate Srilanka

Last week I returned from a holiday in Sri Lanka arranged by Ultimate Srilanka My tour consultant, Ishara, was excellent arranging the holiday.

Alexandria, Virginia

View on Google
Travel News & Tips

Keep in the know about the latest news in the Sri Lanka travel sphere through the Ultimate Sri Lanka Blog


Exploring the Galle Fort, Sri Lanka in a Day

Exploring the Galle Fort is the main highlight of any tourist visits to Sri Lanka. It is not an exaggeration or hyperbole to say that the Galle Fort is not a place to miss if you visit Sri Lanka.

Read More

Things You Must Do in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is a country of many wonders and many pleasures. It is not called the paradise island for nothing. There are so many things to do and experience in the country that if you start making a list, you will never be able to finish it.

Read More

Things to Do In Kandy, Sri Lanka

Things to Do In Kandy, the capital of the last kingdom of Sri Lanka. Located in the center of Sri Lanka among the misty hills of the central province, and housing the temple of the Tooth Relic, Kandy is a magnet for visitors from all over the world.

Read More
The Best Things To Do In Unawatuna

The Best Things To Do In Unawatuna

Find out the best things to do In Unawatuna which is a very popular beach destination in Sri Lanka for a number of decades. With its soft fine sands, it is an amazing beach to lie down on, walk on and enjoy the surf.

Read More


Get Social With Us
Get in touch with us and we look forward to speaking with you
Free Newsletter Sign up
Get the latest travel advice , offers and holiday ispiration delivered to your inbox

Copyright © 2019 Ultimate Srilanka : All right reserved | UK: Ultimate Srilanka, Kenilworth Road, Coventry CV7 7DQ, UK