Must-see attractions in Polonnaruwa

  • Nelum Pokuna

    A track to the left from the northern stretch of road leads to unusual Nelum Pokuna (Lotus Pond), nearly 8m in diameter, which has five concentric,…

  • Bathing Pool

    Just outside the southeast corner of the palace grounds, the Bathing Pool (Kumara Pokuna) has a central lotus island and two of its crocodile-mouth spouts…

  • Pabula Vihara

    Also known as the Parakramabahu Vihara, Pabula Vihara is a typical dagoba from the period of Parakramabahu I. This brick stupa is the third-largest dagoba…

  • Audience Hall

    Parakramabahu I’s Audience Hall is notable for the frieze of elephants, each of which is in a different pose. There are fine lions at the top of the steps.

  • Atadage

    A shrine for the tooth relic, the Atadage is the only surviving structure in Polonnaruwa dating from the reign of Vijayabahu I.

  • Royal Baths

    This water tank next to the EKHO Lake House has a stepped entrance and is fed from the nearby Topa Wewa.

  • Entrance to Ruins

    This is where you will have your Polonnaruwa ticket checked, before entering the main site.

  • Statue

    Standing nearly 4m high, this statue displays an unusually lifelike human representation, in contrast to the normally idealised or stylised Buddha figures…

  • Buddha Seema Prasada

    Set on a natural ridge, this was the monastery’s convocation hall, where monks met fortnightly. This building features a fine mandapaya (raised platform…

  • Velaikkara Slab Inscription

    This 12th-century memorial slab records the oath taken by the Velaikkara royal guards to protect the Buddha tooth relic after an earlier rebellion was…

  • Menik Vihara

    This minor monastery consisted of a stupa, relic house, image house, refectory and dispensary.

  • Vishnu Devale No 2

    This minor ruined Hindu temple is one of many Indian-influenced temples in Polonnaruwa.

  • Shiva Devale

    This minor Hindu temple is one of Polonnaruwa's many Indian-influenced temples.

  • Shiva Devale No 7

    This minor ruin is one of Polonnaruwa's many Indian-influenced Hindu temples.

  • Exit

    Most visitors exit the archaeological site here.

  • Vishnu Devale No 4

    This minor Hindu site is outside the main archaeological area and can easily be skipped.

  • Shiva Devale No 5

    This minor Hindu site is outside the main archaeological area and can easily be skipped.