The home of 'true sanctity'.
If veneration takes you anywhere in Sri Lanka, then Kataragama should be your first place to visit. Frequented by thousands of devotees and pilgrims from various religious backgrounds, particularly Hindus and Buddhists, through the ages travelling here to receive blessings for a new house, car, children’s education, good health, and for absolutely anything as a matter fact, Kataragama is considered the home of true sanctity. Why? Mainly for its many temples and houses of worship.
The shrines and stupas within these temples are timeless pieces of work, dating as far back as the 1st Century BC. Kirivehera stupa is one such structure. The Maha Devalaya, just beyond, houses three main shrines, with its dedication being to a principle deity, god Katharagama.
Sella Kataragama is a little town located a few kilometres from the city. It boasts pleasant walkways and humbly scenic surroundings. It is also recognised as the place where god Kataragama met one of his partners, Valli Amma, under the tamarind trees.
Don’t miss: Tissamaharmaya, a neighbouring city to Katharagama; renowned for making the best buffalo curd in the country, the view from atop Vedihiti Kanda, and Kebilitha Devalaya in heart of Yala National Park.