The Temple of Isurumuniya, which is known by the names, such as; Vessagiri Viharaya, and Mahagiri Viaharaya, by the locals, is situated, few meters towards the east of the Thisa Wewa. This temple is known among many for its antiquities and sculptures and most importantly the different archaeological theories woven based on the many sculptures.
King Devannampiyatissa founded the ancient Issaramana or Isiramana Vihara in the 3rd Century BC, it is evident, that the current Isurumuniya temple had undergone many renovations under many kings.
This temple holds a significant value to the cultural heritage of Sri Lanka. The temple of Isurumuniya, which was built by a group of granite boulders, is situated in the premises of massive rock. As you enter the premises, you would be greeted with the cold breeze of the pond of the temple which is adjoined to the base of the cliff. At the bottom of the rock next to the pond, you may see the stone carvings of bathing elephants or water elephants, and on the top of the cliff, you would see a pupil seating on a royal pose with a horse head.
Due to these cravings, many experts suggest that this would’ve been a sacred place to worship the god of rain, while the Hindus believed that this would’ve been a temple for the god Siva and Goddess Parvathi. However, as per the legends it was said, that the tooth relic was firstly received in this temple and later it was transported to different places for its safety.
Any person with the spirit for adventure and universal love for the culture and heritage of Sri Lanka would enjoy traveling to the temple as it gives a hiking experience with the refreshing air from the surrounding tanks as you reach the top of the rock.
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