Kalutara Chaitya is one of the most prominent places of worship among the Buddhists in the island of Sri Lanka. This majestic stupa is located in very close proximity to the Kalutara Bridge.
The Kalutara Chaitya is one of the very few hollow Buddhist stupas in the world. Therefore it is an incredibly popular tourist attraction too. The interiors of the stupa are adorned in vibrant murals that depict scenes from the Jataka tales.
Gangatilake Vihara occupied the present site of the Kalutara Chaitya many years ago. This old temple was destroyed by the Portuguese who invaded the land. They later built a fort upon the hill.
Rebulding the Kalutara Temple
The foundation for the modern Kalutara Chaitya was laid in the year 1964. The pinnacle of the temple was unveiled and the relics were deposited in it in the year 1980. The stupa was commissioned by Sir Cyril de Zoysa, a prominent business tycoon as well as a popular politician. The construction of the temple was undertaken by State Engineering Corporation of Sri Lanka. The very first computer in the country was used to make the complex calculations related to the construction work of the stupa.
Kalutara Bodhiya is also located within the premises of the Kalutara Chaitya. It is one of the 32 saplings of the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhiya in Anuradhapura. When the British were ruling in the country, they were planning to remove this sacred bodhi tree while constructing railroads. Their plans were thwarted by throngs of Buddhist protestors.
When you are travelling in the southwest coast of Sri Lanka, be sure to visit this place of immense religious and cultural significance. You will be able to easily arrange tours to this temple when you are travelling with Green Holiday Centre.
Do keep in mind that this is a venerated site of worship so be sure to wear decent clothes that cover legs and shoulders.