The Ultimate Guide to Visiting the Ruwanweliseya Stupa

The Ultimate Guide to Visiting the Ruwanweliseya Stupa

Ruwanweliseya Stupa is a hemispherical stupa located in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka. It is one of the most important pilgrimage sites for Buddhists in the country. The stupa is white-washed and is one of the most visible landmarks in Anuradhapura.

The stupa is a peaceful and serene place, but it can get crowded on Poya days (full moon days) and weekends. Ruwanweliseya Stupa is historically significant and is considered to be the most sacred stupa in Sri Lanka. It is also known by other names, such as Mahaseya, Ratnamali Stupa, Swarnamali Stupa, and Maha Stupa.

Many visitors who come to see the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi Tree also visit Ruwanweliseya Stupa.

The History of Ruwanweliseya Stupa

Ruwanweliseya old photos
wikipedia

King Dutugemunu of Sri Lanka constructed Ruwanweliseya Stupa in 140 BC. He was a famous ancient king who united Sri Lanka and took many actions to protect Buddhism in the country.

The stupa was originally 55 meters high, but it was renovated and expanded by many kings over the centuries. It is now 103 meters high and has a circumference of 290 meters.

Buddhists believe that the stupa houses sacred relics of the Buddha. It is one of the most important pilgrimage sites in Sri Lanka.

The construction of the stupa was supervised by Arhat Buddhist monks. According to legend, the stupa sank seven times during construction. King Dutugemunu was worried, but the monks told him that this was a good sign, as it meant that the foundation was strong.

The king died before the stupa was completed. His younger brother, King Saddhatissa, covered the stupa with white cloth to make it look finished. He then brought King Dutugemunu to the site, where he died peacefully.

Why Ruwanweliseya Stupa is Important to Buddhists

Why Ruwanweliseya Stupa is Important to Buddhists
360view.lk

Buddhists believe that Ruwanweliseya Stupa houses a large number of the Buddha’s sacred relics. It is the largest repository of the Buddha’s sacred relics in the world.

Buddhists also believe that, at the end of the world, all of the Buddha’s sacred relics will gather at Ruwanweliseya Stupa. They will then form a figure of the Buddha on top of the stupa and attain nirvana.

How to Reach Ruwanweliseya Stupa

How to Reach Ruwanweliseya Stupa
wikipedia

There are several ways to reach Ruwanwelisaya Stupa in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka.

  • By train: Anuradhapura has a train station, and there are several train services that depart from Colombo and other major cities in Sri Lanka. The journey takes about 4 hours.
  • By bus: There are several bus companies that operate services to Anuradhapura from all over Sri Lanka. The journey takes about 5 hours.
  • By car: If you are driving, you can take the A9 highway from Colombo to Anuradhapura. The journey takes about 3 hours.

Once you are in Anuradhapura, you can reach Ruwanwelisaya Stupa by taking a taxi or tuk-tuk. The stupa is located about 2 kilometers from the city center.

What is the Ideal Time to Visit Ruwanweliseya Stupa?

The best time to visit Ruwanweliseya Stupa is during the early morning or in the evening. The weather is cooler during these times, and there are fewer crowds. You will also be able to appreciate the beauty of the stupa in the soft light of the morning or evening.

If you are visiting during the peak season (December to April), it is advisable to visit early in the morning or later in the evening to avoid the crowds.

There is no entrance fee to Ruwanweliseya Stupa, and it is not difficult to explore. However, it is a good idea to bring some essentials with you, such as snacks and plenty of water.

Where to Stay on a Budget near Ruwanweliseya Stupa in Anuradhapura

Best Hotels Near Ruwanweliseya Stupa in Anuradhapura
Araliya Guest Anuradhapura – tripadvisor

There are many hotels near the Ruwanweliseya Stupa, each with its own unique set of amenities and price points. Here are a few of the most popular options:

  • Langama Thena – Langama thena is a guest house located just 500 meters from the stupa. It offers affordable rooms with free Wi-Fi and private bathrooms.
  • The Ivy Lake is a hotel located 2.5 kilometers from the stupa. It offers spacious rooms with lake views. It also has a swimming pool and a fitness center.
  • Dula Lake Resort is a hotel located 3 kilometers from the stupa. It offers modern rooms with air conditioning and flat-screen TVs. It also has a restaurant and a bar.
  • Araliya Guest Anuradhapura is a hotel located 1.5 kilometers from the stupa. It offers simple rooms with shared bathrooms. It also has a garden and a restaurant.

When choosing a hotel near the Ruwanweliseya Stupa, you should consider your budget, your needs, and your preferences. If you are on a budget, Langama Thena is a good option. If you are looking for a more luxurious stay, The Ivy Lake is a good choice. And if you are looking for a hotel with a pool and a fitness center, Dula Lake Resort is a good option.

No matter what your budget or needs are, there is sure to be a hotel near the Ruwanweliseya Stupa that is perfect for you.

Suggested reading: Best Hotels Near Ruwanweliseya Stupa in Anuradhapura

Your Questions Answered

Is the Ruwanweliseya Stupa open to tourists year-round?

Yes, The Ruwanweliseya Stupa is open to tourists year-round. However, it is advisable to check for local holidays or events that might affect visiting hours.

Are there any dress code requirements for visitors to the stupa?

Visitors are encouraged to dress modestly and respectfully when visiting the stupa. It is recommended to cover shoulders and knees as a sign of cultural sensitivity.

Can visitors participate in the rituals and ceremonies at the stupa?

Tourists are welcome to observe ceremonies from a distance, but active participation is usually reserved for Buddhist practitioners.

Are photography and videography allowed at the stupa?

Photography and videography are generally allowed, but it is courteous to ask for permission before taking photos of individuals or during ceremonies.

Are there guided tours available to learn more about the stupa’s history and significance?

Yes, guided tours are available for visitors who want to learn more about the stupa’s history and significance.

Suggested reading: Everything You Need to Know Before Visiting Sri Lanka

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