Archive for the ‘Holombuwa Sthri Pura Purana Gal Len Viharaya (Stone Cave Temple)’ Category


Holombuwa Sthri Pura Purana Gal Len Viharaya (Stone Cave Temple)

July 5, 2011

According to Folklore King Valagamba when in hiding had hidden 500 of his queens in this cave.
Which is how part of its name has been coined. Sthri Pura meaning place full of women. Unique to
this cave system is that unlike any other cave system in Sri Lanka it has a naturally occurring
magnificent stone arch at the entrance.
About 250 years after the king’s time, having been found by some priests this cave like most other
caves in the country had been converted into a Buddhist temple. There is a network of tunnels in the
recesses of this cave which were designed for the king to escape. According to folklore one tunnel
came out at Yataha at the Yataha lena(cave) and the other at Dedigama Kotha Vehera(Pinnacle
temple). Today the pathways to the tunnels have been sealed off by the priests and villagers so as to
prevent anyone getting lost and also to prevent snakes and other such dangerous creature from
going into the tunnels and coming out.
There is a quaint little pond in the cave which has a bold message saying not to throw coins into it.
Despite the message, the bottom of the pond is covered in an assortment of coins. According to the
villagers the water in the pond never becomes stagnant and there is no visible sign of where the
water comes from. And there is a story that this pond which is on a much higher elevation becomes
murky when in the lower fields below in Naipana the villagers start harvesting their paddy, the belief
is that this proves the existence of the tunnel from that location to this.

Directions and location

Situated in the village of Holombuwa off the Kegalle town this temple can be reached by
Pitagaldeniya junction, 6 kms from Galigamuwa, via the Avissawella road. A visit to this temple can
be done leisurely from Colombo within a day.


Kegalle District

June 29, 2011
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