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Brazen Palace, Anuradhapura Overview

The Brazen Palace or Lovamahapaya is a 2000-year-old palace constructed by King Dutugemunu in 2nd century B.C and had 1600 stone columns that supported nine stories reaching 150 feet and sides of 400 feet length with 1000 rooms. It is also known as the Brazen Place because of the bronze tiles that were used on its roof.

Lovamahapaya was constructed as a residence for Buddhist monks who assembled on “Poya” days (poya means full moon day, in modern-day Sri Lanka poya marks a holiday) to recite the “Pirith” (Buddhist practice of reciting certain verses and scriptures in order to ward off misfortune or danger) and could accommodate 1000 monks.

One will also see roofed building, which is a replica of what the building might have looked like in its time. This building is a modern chapter house currently being used by the Maha Vihara monastic order. There is also a 45- feet rice boat cut from a stone which could historically prepare alms for 3,000 monks at a time in the Mahavihara monastery. It is convenient to visit this place as it lies between the major sites of Anuradhapura, i.e. the Maha Bodhi Temple and Ruvanveliseya. Though in ruins now, the structure is a testament of a bygone age and is a rich source of heritage and local culture.

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Tips while Visiting Lovamahapaya

  • Maha Bodhi temple is very close to this site and is a significant Buddhist temple in Anuradhapura, so one can visit there.
  • Ascending north of the Mahabodhi tree, you will find the brazen palace, and after walking further for 10 minutes, you will reach the Ruwanweliseya, another primary site of Anuradhapura.
  • The Jetavanaramaya is a stupa, or Buddhist reliquary monument located nearby.
  • The ruins of Ransimalakaya, an open meeting hall.
Since all these sites are at walking distance from each other,one can cover all of them conveniently.

Restaurants near Lovamahapaya

Hotel Shalini: The restaurant serves authentic and tasty Sri Lankan Rice & curry along with western and Chinese Food. Price Range: 350-850 LKR.

The Nuwara Wewa Guesthouse: This guesthouse’s restaurant has some excellent westernized meals to serve.

History of Lovamahapaya

In ancient times, the building had refectory and the uposatha gara (Uposatha house). There was also a Simamalake where the Sangha assembled on Poya days to recite the sutra of the confessional. It is said that it took six years for the construction of the building. But the building was destroyed during the reign of King Saddhatissa. Roof structures were mostly wooden and have either rotted away or been taken for other buildings or firewood.

How To Reach Lovamahapaya

From Kandy, you can take either bus number 42/2 or 43 from Goods Shed Bus stop at A9 highway for Anuradhapura.

There are also two train stations in and around Anuradhapura, which can take you to and fro Colombo.

By bus or 4 wheeler, Colombo is about 4 hours away from Anuradhapura.

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