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Anuradhapura Places to Visit

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A UNESCO world heritage site, Anuradhapura is one of the most ancient places of Sri Lanka. Home to some of the most ancient and grandest monuments of Sri Lanka, it is a popular destination for Sinhalese Buddhist Pilgrims as we find many ancient Buddhist monuments here. Thus if you want to holiday at a place where you want to be taken back to history and witness some of the marvels of ancient civilization, Anuradhapura tour is what you need to take. This place is filled with ancient historical remains like palaces, temples, monasteries, and other structures reminiscent of glorious past of Sri Lanka.

Established in 4th century BC, it is the first capital of Sri Lanka. Anuradhapura tourism thrives on thousands of tourist and Buddhist pilgrims who consider it a sacred place due to the location of various ancient and large dagobas here. A Dagoba is a dome like structure which houses the sacred relics of bodily remains of Buddha, or other objects or articles used by him. The ancient relics and ruins bring alive the ancient Lankan civilization.

Tourissts are basically dominated by pilgrims. However many other people who have a like for history and Buddhism also come here, besides many archaeologists and historians. Some of the best places to visit while taking an Anuradhapura tour are –
Sri Maha Bodhi Tree – this tree was grown from the sapling of the same tree under which Buddha achieved enlightenment 2500 years ago.
Samadhi Buddha – this is a statue of Buddha in meditating pose and belongs to 4th century AD. It is one of a kind and a masterpiece.
Aukana Buddha – it is a 5th century statue, which is 13 metres high and craved out of solid granite.
Guard stone at Thuparama – it is the oldest dagoba of Sri Lanka where they have the collar bone relic of Buddha.
Isurumuniya Lovers – built in 3rd century BC, it is famous for its rock carvings, the famous of which is that of the ‘lovers’.
Ruwanveli Seya – the greatest and the most popular stupas of Anuradhapura, it was built in 2nd century BC. It is built in the shape of a bubble.
Abhayagiri stupa and monastery – it is the largest monastery complex of Anuradhapura which was built in 2nd century BC and is spread across 200 hectors.
Jethawana Monastery – it is believed to be the cremation grounds of Mahinda Thera, who introduced Buddhism to Sri Lanka.

Thus nowhere on earth we can find so many important and interesting historical monuments and centres. It is truly a treat for lovers of ancient history and civilisation.

Anuradhapura can be reached by rail, road and airways. The nearest airport is in Colombo, about 183 kms away. Train and bus services are also available from Colombo. The best way to explore this ancient city is on bicycles which are available on hire. The best time to take Anuradhapura tour is April and September; however the temperature is pleasant throughout the year.  So if you looking for a chance to familiarize yourself with the ancient and greatest civilisation of Sri Lanka and the whole of Asia for that matter, Anuradhapura should be must on your list.

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