Alms Hall


To the southwest of the Abhayagiri Dagoba this small site has a 19m-long stone batnava (or rice canoe) that would have been filled daily with cooked rice to feed Abhayagiri's thousands of monks. To the west are the remains of a kitchen and a smaller stone canoe used for curry.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Anuradhapura attractions

1. Abhayagiri Dagoba

0.08 MILES

Dating back to the 1st century BC, this colossal dagoba was the ceremonial focus of the 5000-strong Abhayagiri Monastery. Originally over 100m high, it…

2. Ratnaprasada

0.08 MILES

Most of the 8th-century Ratnaprasada or 'Jewel Palace' lies in ruins today, though it was originally seven storeys high with a graceful, tiered roof. The…

3. Abhayagiri Museum

0.21 MILES

This museum, south of the Abhayagiri Dagoba, is arguably the most interesting in Anuradhapura and contains a collection of squatting plates, jewellery,…

4. Moonstone

0.22 MILES

Sitting northwest of the Abhayagiri Dagoba, this ruined 9th-century residential complex for monks is notable for having the finest carved moonstone in Sri…

5. Samadhi Buddha

0.23 MILES

This 4th-century statue, seated in the samadhi (meditation) pose, is regarded as one of the finest Buddha statues in Sri Lanka. When constructed, it was…

6. Eth Pokuna

0.28 MILES

Surrounded by forest, this huge body of water is thought to have acted as an ancient water storage tank for the Abhayagiri monastery rather than as a pool…

7. Lankarama Dagoba

0.35 MILES

To the south of the Ratnaprasada is this whitewashed 1st-century-BC dagoba.

8. Kuttam Pokuna

0.51 MILES

These swimming-pool-like ponds were likely used by monks from nearby Kaparamula residence hall. Water entered the larger pond through the mouth of a…