Abeyadana Pahto


About 1300ft south of Manuha Paya, this 11th-century temple with a Sinhalese-style stupa was supposedly built by Kyanzittha’s Bengali wife Abeyadana, who waited for him here as he hid for his life from his predecessor King Sawlu. It’s famed for its original frescoes, which were cleaned in 1987 by Unesco staff. If the temple is locked, ask at the caretaker’s house, to the south.

With a torch, you can make out many figures that Abeyadana, believed to be a Mahayanist, would likely have asked for: Bodhisattvas such as Avalokitesvara, and Hindu deities Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and Indra. The inner shrine contains a large, brick seated buddha (partly restored); surrounding walls are lined with niches, most now empty. Inside the front wall are many Jataka scenes.

Some visitors enjoy the sunset at the often overlooked Kyasin temple across the road.

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