Gangaramaya Temple is one of the most well-known Buddhist temples in Colombo. It’s exceptionally beautiful with the Beira Lake on one side and statues & carvings paving the way inside. The main sanctuary has a huge Buddha statue while the ceilings portray his stories. The temple also has training centers, a museum and much more to admire.
So, take a look at this little pocket guide that’ll help you plan a perfect visit to this blissful attraction in Sri Lanka during your next holiday.
About Gangaramaya Temple
In the late 19th century, Hikkaduwe Sri Sumangala Nayaka Thera set up the Gangaramaya Temple in Sri Lanka’s Colombo. It soon became famous for its unusual blend of architectural styles including Sri Lankan, Indian, Thai and Chinese. It’s not just a place of worship either. Gangaramaya Temple is also a center of learning. The Sri Jinaratana Training Institute has 40 training centers and over 7,000 students attending vocational courses daily. In addition, the Gangaramaya Temple’s Na Sevana’s Community Development Project in Sooriyawewa aims to uplift the community through the cultivation of crops, fruits, vegetables, animal husbandry, and health and wellbeing.
Gangaramaya Temple Location
How To Reach: You can take a taxi from Colombo Airport, which should take around 40 minutes to reach.
Gangaramaya Temple Timings: 6 am to 8 pm
Gangaramaya Temple Entrance Fee: None but donations are welcome
Gangaramaya Temple Dress Code: Like most temples, visitors are required to dress conservatively. This means no sleeveless tops and shorts.
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Top Things To See In Gangaramaya Temple
The Gangaramaya Temple in Colombo is one big attraction but there are certain sights you cannot afford to miss.
One of the most popular attractions of the Gangaramaya Temple is the museum. It encompasses several halls and has a collection comprising ivory and wood carvings, curios, ola leaf writings, Buddha statues, and even vintage cars! It is definitely one of the top places to see in Sri Lanka, and not just in the temple.
2. Relic Chamber
Next up is the Relic Chamber and it’s filled with – you guessed it! – relics of the Buddha. You don’t have to be a devotee to admire what’s here. Just take in all you see and leave with memories of the sacred.
The sacred fig tree is where Buddha gained enlightenment. It’s one of the most sacred things in Gangaramaya Temple so don’t miss it and make sure you capture its beauty on your camera!
4. Replica of Borobudur
Central Java is home to the famous Borobudur temple, which was built back in the 8th-9th centuries. Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple, meanwhile, has a replica of this iconic place, complete with Buddha figures and stupas.
Suggested Read: Top 6 Honeymoon Places In Colombo For A Romantic Rendezvous
5. Ata Visi Hall
Another attraction worth taking in is Ata Visi Hall, where 28 Buddhas make their home. They comprise the Buddha born in India and the 27 others who preceded him.
6. Beira Lake and Seema Malakaya
Beira Lake is located just a few hundred meters from the temple so try to take it in during your visit. It’s home to Seema Malakaya, another small temple that’s used for meditation rather than prayer. It’s part of the Gangaramaya Temple and is connected to the mainland via pontoon bridges.
Gangaramaya Temple holds the annual Gangaramaya Nawam Maha Perahera, a procession that was formed in the 1970s. If you’re in Colombo at this time, you definitely have to catch it. Flagbearers, dancers, flautists – there’s a whole lot to see.
Tips For Visiting Gangaramaya Temple
- Carry your camera to capture the beautiful murals and statues after taking permit from the management.
- Take a bottle of sunscreen as the weather ranges from warm to hot.
- If you’re traveling here from somewhere closer than the airport is, take a tuk-tuk and enjoy an adventurous ride.
Excited to visit this temple already? Don’t wait much and plan your Sri Lanka trip with Travel Triangle right away!
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