Discover: Kelaniya 0 202

Discover: Kelaniya 0 203

Located in the outskirts of Colombo district is the city of Kelaniya. While the city boasts of all the modern day luxuries a city can offer, the city also stands as proof of a majestic era that added significant value to the proud history of this nation. If you are looking for a place to spend your holiday that does not involve much travel time, then you most certainly should include a visit to Kelaniya to witness the many attractions that are scattered all around this city.

Getting to Kelaniya

A tour of Kelaniya is a great way to start your journey to explore the wonders of Sri Lanka. Located just about 10 kilometres away from Colombo, you can reach the city via the A1 highway aka the Colombo-Kandy Road, or by rail along the Kelani Weli route and get off at the Kelaniya Railway Station.

Historical significance of Kelaniya

The rich history of Kelaniya is responsible for much of the fame and popularity that this city as gained over the years. One such important historical event that dates back to the pre-historic times is the Lord Buddha’s visit to the island. It is believed that this visit was to forefend a war between two Naga leaders named Chulodara and Mahodara. The root cause behind this raging quarrel was said to be a gem studded throne. Kelaniya was also the kingdom of King Kelani Tissa, the father of Sri Lanka’s heroic Queen Viharamahadevi.  Apart from being known for her selfless act that saved the entire nation, Queen Viharamahadevi is also the mother of one of the greatest rulers of Sri Lanka, King Dutugemunu.

Attractions in Kelaniya

  • Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara

Owing to the rich history that this city boasts of, most of the major attractions in Kelaniya are of historical and cultural significance. One such important site is the ancient Kelaniya Raja Maha Viharaya. Built on the banks of the Kelani River, this temple is truly a remarkable site to witness. The temple is known for the well preserved paintings and sculptures that depict important Buddhist teachings and events. It is also believed the main Stupa of the temple enshrines the gem studded throne which was offered to the Lord Buddha by Chulodara and Mahodara as thanksgiving.

The Kelaniya Temple is also the main starting point of one of the most prominent pageants that have taken place for decades. This magnificent event or ‘Perahera’ takes place on the full moon Poya in January which is referred to as the ‘Duruthu Poya’. If you are in the neighbourhood at this time, it is a great opportunity to witness the grand procession featuring traditional dancers, drummers, and beautifully dressed elephants that adorn the streets.

  • Kelani River

Originating from the hill country, the Kelani River flows through the city of Kelaniya and meets the Ocean in Colombo. As one of the major rivers of the country the Kelani River plays a major role in several irrigation activities and hydropower generation. At various points you can catch a glimpse of this mighty water course that adds to the beauty of this wonderful city.

  • Water World and Bird Park

If you are thinking about what to do in Kelaniya the Water World and Bird Park is a great place to visit. Especially if you are travelling with kids, you most certainly should drop by this massive aquarium featuring over 500 varieties of fish and also a 30 foot long underwater tunnel that lets you witness the splendour of marine life. The Bird Park is another key highlight that features several rare and exotic species of birds in spacious enclosures.

Where to stay

The city of Kelaniya has much to offer its visitors, making it a great place to enjoy much of your vacation. In terms of accommodation, we’ve got you covered. As one of our featured holiday locations, we have a number of properties for you to choose from including home stays, guesthouses and hotels at various price points to suit your requirements.

Previous ArticleNext Article
Rozanne is a marketing professional who has worked on various projects related to Science and Technology, Innovation and Sustainability. Throughout her career she developed a passion for writing and now aspires to be a professional writer. Rozanne looks forward to sharing her thoughts and ideas with readers and to provide inspiration through her experiences.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Most Popular Topics