The Buddha was born in India around 2600 years ago, attaining enlightenment at the age of 35, introducing Buddhism to the world. While Hinduism is the predominant religion in his birth country today it is rapidly gaining popularity world over.
Though the Buddha visited Sri Lanka on twelve occasions, Buddhism in considered to have been introduced to Sri Lanka in the third century BCE by Ven. Mahinda thero, son of emperor Asoka. Sri Lanka has since been a Buddhist nation. Buddhist monks plaid a prominent role in the country as advisors to the Kings as well in guiding the community. Buddhism was spread widely across the island as many ancient temples and monasteries can be found even in the furthest parts of the country. Many of these ancient temples and monasteries can still be found nestled in nature, maintaining their serene atmosphere. Many of these monasteries lie tucked away from the tourist eye.
We wish to help you explore the Buddhist sites in Sri Lanka and discover some of the hidden sites while renewing your understanding and appreciation of Buddhism.
Day 1: Arrival airport to Colombo
Arrive in Sri Lanka where you will be met at the airport and taken to your hotel in Negombo.
Dinner and overnight at hotel in Negombo
Day 2: After breakfast, leave for Anuradhapura.
Anuradhapura is the first capital of ancient Sri Lanka and has a large number of Buddhist sites. It is also the place with highest number of locations said have been visited by the Buddha.
Afternoon visits to Anuradhapura. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Anuradhapura.
Day 3: After breakfast, visit the monastery complex of Mihintalaya.
Mihitalaya was once a forest of mango trees which was where Arahat Mahinda first introduced Buddhism to Sri Lanka. It is an interesting site which includes temples, mansteries and even hospital complexes.
A special alms-giving has been arranged to offer alms to the ascetic priests in the monastery. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Anuradhapura.
Day 4: After breakfast, you will travel North to Jaffna.
Jaffna is the northern capital of Sri Lanka. It is predominantly Tamil. The 30 year old civil war affected this area and its development but it has seen swift development since the end of the war. With numerous religious sites, cultural monuments and also various types of food different to that of the South, Jaffna offers a great cultural experience.
Dinner and overnight at hotel in Jaffna.
Day 5: After breakfast, you will take a boat ride to the Naagadeepaya.
Naagadeepa, which translates to island of snakes is named so as it is believed that the people of the sname clan inhabited this island. It is an important island for both Buddhists and Hindus as on one side is the Buddhist temple and on the other is a Hindu temple, both of great religious importance. It is important to Buddhists as it is the second place visited by the Buddha, in Sri Lanka.
Explore Jaffna town and bazaar in the evening. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Jaffna.
Day 6: After breakfast, transfer to the ancient city of Polonnaruwa.
This evening, you can relax and if you wish, you can visit the ruins of Polonnaruwa or do a wildlife safari in Minneriya.
Dinner and overnight at hotel in Polonnaruwa.
Day 7: After breakfast, you will travel to Mahiyanganaya.
Mayihanganaya temple is the first location in Sri Lanka, graced by the Buddha. You will also visit Mutiyangana monastery which is also a site visited by the Buddha later on.
Dinner and overnight at hotel in Mahiyanganaya.
Day 8: After breakfast, you will visit Deegavapiya.
Deegavapiya is the 6th destination the Buddha visited. After your visiting Deegavapiya temple, you can enjoy a local lunch in the village.
In the evening, enjoy a cultural show by the Veddas, the indigenous hunter-gatherer community of Sri Lanka.
Dinner and overnight at hotel in Mahiyanganaya.
Day 9: After breakfast, transfer to Katharagama.
The journey to Katharagama is very scenic and you will stop at a few locations that are of historical importance.
In the evening, visit the Kiri Vehera visited by the Buddha. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Katharagama.
Day 10: After breakfast, you will drive on to Ratnapura.
Ratnapura is best known as the city of gems. This is also where you will find the cave Divaguhawa where the Buddha is said to have rested at.
Dinner and overnight at hotel in Ratnapura.
Day 11: After breakfast, you will travel to economic capital of Sri Lanka, Colombo.
This evening, you will visit the Kelaniya temple which the Buddha visited on his second journey to Sri Lanka.
Dinner and overnight at hotel in Colombo.
Day 12: Today, your tour of the ‘Lanka Smart Tours’, places visited by the Buddha, comes to an end.
Your chauffeur guide will take you to the airport and bid you farewell.Package Included: Transportation by air- conditioned Luxury Car | Services of English Speaking driver | Accommodation.