On Poson full moon day, many centuries ago, a great encounter took place between a proud king of Sri Lanka and venerated monk India. This fateful encounter resulted in Buddhism being introduced to the island of Sri Lanka. The King was the great Devanampiyatissa. The monk was the venerated Mahinda Thera, the son of King Asoka of India. The place where they met is the iconic Mihintale, the birthplace of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.
Buddhists flock to this sacred mountain every year to pay homage to temples and monuments that are situated in it. Each year in the month of July a great festival takes place in Mihintale, to commemorate the encounter of monk Mahinda and King Devanapiyatissa. It is indeed a site that has to be explored when travelling in Sri Lanka. There are many monuments and attractions of cultural, religious and historical significance to see and admire here. If you want to have a tour in Mihintale arranged, you can get in touch with Green Holiday Centre. The climb can be rather strenuous and can take up to 20 minutes. But once you reach zenith of the mountain, you will be swept away by the beauty of the surrounding vista.
Sites in Mihinthalaya
There is an ancient hospital located at the foot of the temple which enchants all visitors. Many believe this to be the oldest hospital in the world. Kantaka Cetiya, the Refectory, Ambasthala Dagaba, The Cave of Arahat Mahinda, Maha Stupa, Aradhana Gala, Kaludiya Pokuna, Singha Pokuna and Naga Pokuna are also famous monuments and attractions that you have to visit when exploring Mihintale. You will be able to enjoy a comprehensive tour if you go with an experienced travel guide. Be sure to carry your camera with you when you go to Mihintale as the sights here are truly breathtaking!