Colombo, Sri Lanka
Information Not Currently Available
Approximately 4 Hours
Meals not included
Kelaniya is an active Buddhist temple, built on a site believed to have been visited by the Buddha himself more than 2,000 years ago. It is said that here he preached his doctrine to a gathering of serpent kings. Today, human worshippers come to lay sprigs of lotus flowers around the great white dagoba, light oil lamps, and sprinkle the base of the Tree of Enlightenment with purifying water. Artistic highlights of the temple are the very fine carvings and lovely frescoes, fascinating geometrically patterned ceiling paintings, and three important images of Buddha -- two in a sitting position and one in a reclining pose. Adorning the outer walls is more lighthearted work -- rows of whimsical dwarfs and elephants in bas relief.
You will return to Colombo for some shopping. Sri Lanka is famous for its precious and semi-precious stones -- sapphires, star rubies, topaz, garnets, citrine among many others -- so no trip is complete without a visit to a gem and jewelry outlet.
Your next stop will be a discovery of the traditional crafts of Sri Lanka. Want to carry souvenirs home? This is the place to buy tea, woodcarvings, brass, silverware and batiks. After your shopping expedition, return to the pier.
Please note: Modest attire is required; knees, shoulders and midriffs must be covered; shorts and short skirts are not allowed. Shoes must be removed prior to entering the temple. Bring along a pair of thick socks to protect your feet from the hot pavement. Flash photography is not allowed inside the temple. Photography in certain parts of the temple may be prohibited. The temple will be crowded on public and religious holidays.