Religious Places, Southern Province, Sri Lanka: Travel/Tourist Information Guide

Galapatha Buddhist TempleKoggala TempleSitulpawwa TempleThe Dutch Reformed ChurchThe Dutch Reformed ChurchTissa Maha DagobaTissa Maha DagobaWewurukannala Vihara

The Dutch Reform Church

It is located in Galle. The church was originally built in 1640 and the church holds different aspects such as the floors are paved with gravestones from the Dutch cemetery. There are plenty of theories about the church such as there are human remains hidden in the walls and under the floor. The church is the oldest Protestant place of worship in Sri Lanka since 1748. Another importance of the church is its structure which is there are no pillars inside the building and the weight of the roof is supported by the walls.

Koggala Temple

Koggala Temple is located in Galle. Koggala Beach is best known for its fishermen who stand on poles and fish a few meters off the shore by using bamboo rods. This activity started during the Second World War. Since then, the tradition hasn’t change and it still continues along Sri Lanka’s southern coast. The area also contains the Kathaluwa Buddhist temple which is an important place with its murals and the first printing press brought by the Dutch to Sri Lanka.

Situlpawwa Temple

It is located in Hambantota and is an old temple that used to be a well-known Buddhist monastery. It is considered to be an important historical site for Buddhist teachings. It is a cave complex that the cave temple is 67 feet in height and 30 feet in length. The temple is believed to be a safe haven for the Arahants that occupied the temple during the 1st century. Arahants are the monks who achieved the highest level of wisdom like Lord Buddha. The temple is originally known as Cittalpabbata meaning ‘hil of the quiet mind’. The cave temple is also famous for the discovery of Brahmi script, ruins of different structure and fragments of paintings which can be seen at the image house.

Tissa Maha Dagoba

Tissa Maha Dagoba is located in Tissamaharama and is one of the main attractions of Tissamaharama. It is one of the 16 most sacred sites for Buddhist in Sri Lanka. It is believed to have been originally built around 200 B.C. by King Kavantissa, a king of Ruhunu. The white dagoba has circumference of 165 m and stands 55.8 m high. It is thought to have held a sacred tooth relic and forehead bone relic. Next to the dagoba, there is a statue of Queen Viharamahadevi.

Galapatha Buddhist Temple

Galapatha Buddhist Temple is a very old Buddhist temple left from 12thcentury with stone inscriptions and stone carvings. To reach it, one can cross the bridge and take the side road to left after 500 meters. It is located in Bentota.

Wewurukannala Vihara

Wewurukannala Vihara is a Buddhist temple famous with its Buddha statue located in Matara. It is the largest Buddha statue in the Sri Lanka, accompanied by a collection of real-scale statue depictions of demons and sinful creatures and their punishments according to their sins.