We went to Srilanka recently (December 2019) it was a funfilled trip with Sanjay tours about 32 peoples accompanying us . The places we covered are Ramayana places , Arupadai veedu murugar temples , Pancha Eswara sthalams , Paadal petra Shivalayam 2 , Sakthi peedam 3 , Ella forest , Rhamboda and Ella falls . Colombo city tour . Kathirkamam murugan temple . We reached katunayake airport by 2pm .
A guest house was arranged for us to sleep .
After getting freshen up in the guest house we got up in a mini van and by 8 am reached Madhambe Murugar temple . One batch went for morning breakfast and the another to temple .
Madhambe Murugar temple
It’s a temple for Lord Murugar in Chillaw , with a huge Lord Murugar statue at the entrance gate and huge colourfull idols of Lord Shiva Goddess Parvathi Lord Anjineyar run by a private entity .
After killing Lanka King Ravana on his return to Ayodhya Lord Rama felt a shadow following him . When the Lord came to this place , he realized the shadow had stopped . He prayed Lord Shiva to relieve him from (Brahma hathi dosham) . Lord Shiva suggested to Lord Rama to install 4 lingam in and worship .
Manavari is the first lingam installed and prayed by Lord Rama and till date this lingam is called as Ramalinga Shivan. This lingam is made up of sands (manal in tamil) hence the name Manalvari got corrupted as Manavari . Rameshwaram is the only other lingam in the world named after Lord Rama .
Legend: Lord Rama after his victorious battle left for Ayodhya in one of King Ravana’s Vimanas . He felt he was being followed by Bramahathi Dosham as he killed King Ravana who was a Brahmin. He stopped the Vimana at this juncture because he felt at this place the “ Bramahathi Dosham ” was not following him. He descended from the Vimana and asked God Shiva for a remedy. God Shiva blessed Lord Rama and advised him to install and pray four lingams in Manavari, Munneswaram, Thiruketheeswaram and Rameshwaram in India, as the only remedy to get rid of the Dosham.
Thiruketheeswaram is one of the five Shivan temples in the Island (Pancha Eswara sthalams) as well as Paadal petra Shivalayam . The giant Shivalingam carved out of granite stone which was excavated by archaeologists in Thiruketheeswaram temple area in the fifties is believed to have been buried when the Portuguese destroyed the temple during their invasion of Mannar in the 16th century. The temple which was in ruins was gradually rebuilt to its pristine glory during the British period with Hindu elite from Jaffna playing a major role in the reconstruction. Now renovation works are being done .
The Sangupiddy Bridge that connects the A-32 road from Mannar to Jaffna across the lagoon is the shortest land route to Jaffna from Colombo. The A-32 road is 120 kilometers shorter than the way through the main A-9 Jaffna-Kandy highway. Through the Sangupiddy Bridge the traveling time to Jaffna will be reduced by three hours. Is a awesome place surrounded by water with a bridge and breezy air definitely one should not miss this place .
Nallur kandaswamy temple
It’s one of the arupadai veedu of Lord Muruga in Srilanka.
The Nallur Kandaswamy temple is an important relic of Sri Lanka, which has been praised in many ancient texts from around the world. As such a visit is a must to properly understand the glory of ancient Hindu Temples .
With this we completed our first day of the itenary. Our night stay and dinner was put up in Hotel Gnanam.
On the second day by 8.30 am (after a early breakfast) we started to Naina theevu to Goddess Naghabhoosani Amman temple which is one of the sakthi peedams ( its said Ammans right leg anklet fell in this place ) . We a members of 32 people occupied a boat . It was an half an hour travel . It is a big temple .
Nainativu Nagapoosani Amman Temple is an ancient and historic Hindu temple located 36 km from the ancient capital of the Jaffna kingdom , Nallur , SriLanka . It is dedicated to Parvati who is known as Nagapooshani or Bhuvaneswari and her consort, Shiva who is named here as Rakshaseshwar ( Nayanair ) .
Then we went to Naguleswaram .
This is one of the Pancha Eshwara sthalam .
Thousands of years ago a Sage named Nagul had come here . Due to a curse his face had become like that of a mongoose . Deity Shiva advised him that for mitigation of the curse he should bath in the pond created from the Keerimalai spring in Lankapuri . He complied after which He regained the human form . In gratitude as an offering unto the Holy feet of Deity Shiva Sage Nagul installed a Shivalinga there and worshiped it . Even today hundreds of people bath in this Keerimalai pond to get rid of skin diseases .
This is also a murugar temple .The main deity there is no idol of Lord Murugar only the Vel His weapon is kept and worshipped . This temple is considered to be like Thiruchendur temple of Tamilnadu as it is near beach coast and a gnayi kinaru is present . It is one of the arupadai veedu of Srilanka .
Mavitapuram Kandaswamy temple
A shrine dedicated to Lord Skanda or Murugan , god of war and the second son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi. The Maviddapuram Kandaswamy Kovil is located close to Kankesanthurai , which was formerly known as Gayathurai . However , since the image of Lord Skanda, also known as Kankesan, first arrived in Gayathurai , it is believed that the name changed to Kankesanthurai . Maviddapuram, the place where the temple is situated translates to ‘the holy city where the horse face was removed’ ( Ma – horse, vidda –removed and pura – holy city ). It is believed that this legendary temple temple was built by a Chola Princess from Tamil Nadu . According to history princess Maruthapuraveegavallli , had a disfigured face resembling that of a horse . It is said that Maviddapuram is the place where the gods answered her prayers and transformed her appearance to that of a woman .
Inuvil kandaswamy Arunagirinathar koil
This is another arupadai veedu of Lord Murugar temple in Srilanka .
This is also one of the arupadai veedu Lord Murugar temple in Srilanka .
” Vel ” the weapon of Lord Murugar is only worshipped in most of the Lord Murugar temples in Srilanka . Though there is idol kept adjacent to it .
With this we finished 5 temples of ” arupadai veedu ” and returned to Gnanam Hotel for night stay and dinner .
Morning checked out our rooms and with a early breakfast at Hotel Gnanam we started our 3rd day trip .
Sangathaanai Bhairavaswamy Kandaswamy koil
This is also one among the arupadai veedu of Lord Murugar in Srilanka . Had divine dharshan of all 6 abodes of Lord Murugar .
The Moolavar here being Lord Dakshinamoorthy and at the entrance is a 21 feet granite chariot with Poet Manickavasagar idol in it . All 658 poems of Thiruvasagam has been carved on granite slabs and 108 Lingam installed with a bell around the corridor and neatly maintained . This temple has been established by a Hindu couple settled in Australia and the carvings being done by Bharathipuram Vinod .
Kanniya Hot springs
legend about Kanniya’s origin is that this is the place where King Ravana carried out the last rites for his mother. When he was unable to find water to perform the rituals , he pierced with his Trishula into the ground seven times . Water started gushing out immediately. The very hot water cooled down to the present degree when Ravana’s anger calmed down . The temperature of the water is different .
Sri Lakshmi Narayanan temple
The temple is located on the Nilaveli road about 10 Kms from Trincomalee town. There is ample parking space . The bus stop is also very close to the temple . Most of the bus operators will know the place by name . The presiding deity is Sri Lakshmi Narayanan – Vishnu. You will not miss the temple when you are on the Nilaveli road. it is on the left as you go from Trincomalee. It is painted gold on the top and the walls blue. They have a beautiful lengthy hall to stand and pray in front of the god. Place is very clean and serene. Felt at peace when I visited the temple. Such was the impact. There is also idols of all the 10 avatars of Lord Vishnu on the left hand side of the main sanctum . If you visit temples and if you are in Trincomalee do take time to visit this temple . It is worth a visit .
Mariamman temple and Vinayagar temple .
Mariamman koil – Trincomalee is a Hindu temple dedicated to the Goddess Mariamman , a form of the Goddess Kali Amman in Trincomalee Eastern Province , Sri Lanka . The Kali temple of the ancient Trincomalee Koneswaram Temple Compounds , a large complex of connected shrines in the Trincomalee Konesar Malai area , the temple is located close to the Trincomalee Hindu College. Near it is Lord Vinayagar temple . Both the temples has beautiful sculptures and carvings .The gopuram and the colourfull carvings are a visual treat to our eyes as photography was allowed we clicked pictures in our mobile as much as we can .
Next was our visit to Koneswaram another Paadal Petra Shivalayam and one of the Pancha Eswara sthalams . Adjacent to it is Goddess Sankaridevi Amman and it is one of the Sakthi peedams .
Thiru Koneswaram was built by Rishi Agastya on the instructions of Lord Shiva who was impressed by the devotion of King Ravana. This place is unique in this respect because the Lord built a temple for his devotee as a reward for his devotion . Lord Rama is believed to have offered his prayers here in order to get rid of the malediction of killing Ravana who was a Brahmin , meaning Brahmahasthi Dosham .
Adjacent to Koneswaram temple there is another small shrine ; with some significance for Hindu pilgrims . The original Shankari Devi temple, said to be built by Ravana , was the first in the list of Ashtadasha ( 18 ) Shakti Peedas written down by Adi Shankara , but its whole cliff was destroyed by Portuguese cannon balls. Only a pillar for commemoration is placed on that spot now . And it is believed that the original idol of the Goddess has been preserved and replaced, being venerated now in this nearby new Shankari Devi temple .
There are many stories relating to King Ravana and Koneswaram Temple . It is believed that King Ravana who was known to have a virulent temper was subdued by Lord Shiva . Apparently , when his mother was suffering from ill health the King wanted to take Koneswaram Temple to her . As he was lifting the rock Lord Shiva had made him drop his sword creating a great cleft , which came to be known as Ravana Vettu. Another story regarding the same is that King Ravana’s mother wanted him to denounce violence and as such he had thrown his sword thus creating the cleft in the rock . This great cleft can be seen just before the entrance to the Temple .
With this we finished our third day of Srilanka trip . Our night dinner and stay was arranged in Green garden resorts .
We proceeded to Habarana on the way we saw Sigiriya Fort and lake . In addition to Dambulla tourist attractions , this rock outcrop in Sigiriya which is an easy half an hour drive away , is a wonderful trip for those looking for a taste of adventure . A 30-minute hike along steep steps and boulders rewards you with sweeping views of the surrounding area and the best view of Sigiriya Lion Rock . The hike through dense forest is thrilling , and the mesmerising views at the top make it worth all the effort . You need to go through an ancient Buddhist temple before beginning the ascent . A sunrise hike is recommended for the breathtaking views and tranquil setting . As many of them were senior citizens did not show interest as we had to climb 1337 steps that too without any balancing wall or support .
Dambulla Golden temple
There are 5 caves (shrine rooms) in Dambulla temple . All of these caves arc full of statues of Buddha and various personages of the Buddhist Order or History . There are 150 Buddha images in these caves . Cave No. 5 (the last in order) has no historical value as it was done in the second decade of this century . All of the other caves contain statues and paintings representing various epochs of Sinhalese sculpture and painting .The early paintings of Dambulla are believed by some to belong to the 8th century A. C. But this cannot be proved at all because of over painting . Nevertheless this place is a mine of decorative designs , the patterns of which resemble those of Sigiriya . To a student of the history of Buddhism a careful study of the paintings of Dambulla provides a good deal of source material .
One has to climb atleast 800 steps to reach the caves statues and paintings of Lord Buddha are there .
Then to a spice garden they cultivate and sell herbal oils and spices it was over priced .
Mostly our afternoon lunch was at Buddha Vihar packed by morning itself from the Hotel we stayed .
This is also considered as one of the Shakthi peedams in Srilanka . Hindus Budhists and Muslims worship here . The main diety is a Lakshmi painting on a canvas , no idol is present .
Night halt and dinner was arranged in kothmallee Holiday resort .
Next day was my birthday 2nd of December as our tour organizer has informed in group ( wats up ) all the co passengers wished me and i was gifted 2 boxes of chocolates by Manivannan Krishnan which I distributed to all .
After breakfast we started to Rhamboda there is a Lord Hanuman temple established by Chinmaya Mission . It is said Lord Hanuman kept his first foot in this place in Srilanka . The temple has a 100 steps and neatly painted the view from top is scenic .
On the way to Seetha Elliya we saw and spent an hour in Ella falls .
Seetha Elliya Location : Seetha Eliya on Nuwara-Eliya – Welimada Road
Legend A temple for Lord Rama , Seetha Devi , Luxshmana and Hanuman built on the sides of the stream where Seetha Devi bathed .
Legend The Ashok Vatika is the place where Ravana kept the Sita captive . Ashok Vatika is a garden that is present in the Seetha Elliya in Sri Lanka . Some of the interesting findings here include the rock on which Sita used to sat and meditate . Seetha Elliya also have the only Site Temple in the world . The idols of Seetha was excavated from here 100 years ago .
Next visited Ravana falls awesome place . Its said Ravana was hiding in the caves above this falls after abducting Seethadevi .We did some roadside shopping there .
As tea cultivation is famous in Srilanka our next destination was to a tea factory name blue field . Within the tea estate they had a retail shop where we all bought tea of our beloved taste and we were served with black tea with lime , which tasted yummy .
Then after lunch we crossed Ella forest on the way we saw more than 5 to 6 elephants crossing .
Location : It is situated 15 km from Seetha Eliya on Nuwara-Eliya – Welimada Road.
Legend : This is the place where Seetha Devi underwent “Agni Pariksha” (test). It is a popular place of worship among locals in this area. Divurumpola means place of oath in Sinhala. The legal system permits and accepts the swearing done at this temple while settling disputes between parties. It is occupied by Buddhists and they have built a temple for Goddess Seethadevi too .
Reached kathirkamam by 6pm , we saw chella kathirkamam vinayagar temple .
This temple was surrounded by river Manicka Ganga and we had to walk in 1 feet of water to reach the temple .
Next we visited Kathirkamam Lord Murugar temple .
Legend: This is the temple of Lord Karthikeya Subramaniam at Kataragama. Lord Karthikeya was requested to go to the battlefield by Lord Indra on the last day of war. This was done to protect Lord Rama from the wrath of Brahmasthra aimed by King Ravana which other wise would have weakened Lord Rama. The benefit was one of the most powerful weapon brahma asthra aimed at Lord Rama for the second time was rendered useless by the presence of Lord Karthikeya.
Then to Hotel Samwill Holiday resort for night dinner and stay .
Asusual early morning breakfast then we visited Devinuvara
The god Upulvan is considered as a guardian deity of Lanka and protector of Buddhism. The word upulvan depicts the color of blue water lily and the God’s complexion is also blue. So that it leads to a confusion that god Upulvan and God Vishnu in Hinduism are identical. But they are considerd as two separate gods.
This dedicated shrine for god Upulvan situated not too far from Matara town, only 6 km from Matara town towards Tangalle. This town is known as Devinuvara in Sinhala which has the meaning of “city of gods”, one of the oldest city in old Lanka.
The 3 story blue color building is elegantly constructed. It is said that its roof is made by copper tiles. The walls are decorated with intricate floral designs. The roof is ways covered by pigeons. The interior also beautifully decorated with marvellous paintings. Taking photographs is strictly prohibited inside the shrine. The temple ground also consists of ancient monument which take your mind to guess its heyday.
One if the Pancha Eswara sthalams is also adjacent to it . There are seperate shrines for Lord Murugar Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Vinayagar. Here only Nandhi is worshipped and a big Lord Buddha idol has been installed .
Then after having lunch we proceeded to Colombo . We saw old parliament and new Parliament building .We did shopping in the House of fashions a 4 storeyed building after dinner we started to Colombo airport with sweet memories of our Srilanka trip .