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Hasthi Shailapura (හස්ති ශෛලපුර)
|Province||North Western Province, Sri Lanka|
|• Type||Municipal Council|
|• Mayor||Thushara Sanjeewa|
|• Total||11 km2 (4 sq mi)|
|Elevation||116 m (381 ft)|
|• Density||2,817/km2 (7,300/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (Sri Lanka Standard Time Zone)|
Kurunegala (Sinhala : කුරුණෑගල, Tamil : குருணாகல்) is a major city in Sri Lanka. It is the capital city of the North Western Province and the Kurunegala District. Kurunegala was an ancient royal capital for 50 years, from the end of the 13th century to the start of the 14th century. It is at the junction of several main roads linking to other important parts of the country. It is about 94 kilometres (58 mi) from Colombo, 42 kilometres (26 mi) from Kandy and 51 kilometres (32 mi) from Matale.
Located at an altitude of 116 metres (381 ft) above sea level, Kurunegala is surrounded by coconut plantations and rubber estates. There are eight very noticeable large rocks that encircle and dominate the city. Kurunegala's rocks rise from the plain below and have characteristic names, six of which come from the animals that they are imagined to represent. The largest among them is Ethagala or the "Elephant Rock" (though the translation is actually tusker), reaches 325 metres (1,066 ft). The shape of Ethagala resembles an elephant.
Kurunegala has been named after the Elephant rock (ඇතුගල). "Kurune" means tusker or an elephant with protruding teeth and gala in Sinhala means rock. Kurunai means tusker or an Elephant and gal in Tamil means rock or hill. Kurunegala's old name was Hasthishaila-pura, which can be translated as 'The City of the Elephant Rock' in Sanskrit. In some ancient literature, the word Athugal-pura (ඇතුගල්පුර) is employed to describe the city of Kurunegala.
Nearby are three archeological cities — Parakramapura (Panduvasnuwara, පඬුවස්නුවර) (northwest) with remains of a moated palace and monasteries from the 12th century, Dambadeniya (දඹදෙනිය) (southwest, mid-13th century) and Yapahuwa (north).
Kurunegala enjoys a pleasant location with huge rocky outcrops some of which have been given names of the animals they resemble: elephant rock, tortoise rock etc. According to folklore legend, a long time back the city had a severe drought. To exacerbate matters for humans, animals had threatened the city's storage capabilities by consuming huge amounts of water. A witch volunteered to alleviate the problem, transforming some of the animals magically into stone figures.
Kurunegala had a citadel in the 13th century. Its ascendancy as an ancient capital of Sri Lanka began with a series of events that took place during the late 12th century at Yapahuwa. The sacred tooth relic which was in the Yapahuwa Kingdom was taken by an Aryacakravarti from the Jaffna Kingdom to the Pandyan country during the rule of Buwaneka Bahu I from 1272 to 1284.The relic was brought back by King Parakrama Bahu III who ruled from Kurunegala between 1287 and 1293. Over the next half a century Kurunegala was the capital and the governing centre for three other kings of Sri Lanka.
After the death of King Parakrama Bahu III, kings Buvanekabahu II (1293–1302) who was followed by Parakramabahu IV (1302–1326) ruled from Kurunegala. The ruler in Kurunegala from 1326 to 1335 was Buwaneka Bahu III alias Wanni Buwaneka Bahu. He was the son of Pandith Parakrama Bahu II and is believed to be the last king to rule the country from Kurunegala.
After the reign of Buwaneka Bahu III, the newly throned king Vijayabahu V ruled from Dambadeniya and Yapahuwa from 1335 to 1341 before once again the kingdom of Sri Lanka shifted to Gampola.
Few remains of the Palace of the Tooth relic that housed the tooth of the Buddha have avoided natural destruction, including few stone steps and a part of a doorway.
Archaeological remains of this site are few but give a glimpse of its past glory and comprise the handsome stone entrance, steps, rock pillars and ruined walls of the royal palace and the palace of the tooth relic.
A large man-made water reservoir constructed by ancient kings. The lake is in the outskirts of the central business district accessible by the Kurunegala-Dambulla and Kurunegala-Puttlam roads. The tank is used as a water supply source for the city.
The Kurunegala clock tower was built in 1922 as a tribute to the officers, who were from Wayamba province and sacrificed their lives in World War I.
Topographically Kurunegala town is based on a plain area with the exception of the surrounding rock outcrops. The northern part of the town is slightly higher than the south. Kurunegala Lake is the primary geographical feature of Kurunegala and adorns the town. The region comprising the Kurunegala town is well above the sea level compared to the coastal areas of Sri Lanka. However, the region is not as high as the central hill country. The nearest beaches to Kurunegala are to the west and include Negombo and Chilaw.
Kurunegala is surrounded by several major rock outcrops, a distinctive geological feature of the Wayamba province.
Kurunegala features a tropical rainforest climate under the Köppen climate classification. The city's climate is tropical and hot all throughout the year. The surrounding rocks play a major role in determining Kurunegala's weather since these rocks increase and retain the heat of the day. During the month of April the temperature can rise up to about 35 °C (95 °F). The only major change in the Kurunegala weather occurs during the monsoons from May to August and October to January when heavy rains can be expected. While the city does experience noticeably drier weather during January and February, it does not qualify as a true dry season as average precipitation in both months are above 60 millimetres (2 in). In general, temperatures from late November to mid February period are lower than the rest of the year.
The average annual rainfall in Kurunegala is about 2,000 millimetres (79 in).
|Climate data for Kurunegala, Sri Lanka (1961–1990)|
|Record high °C (°F)||35.6|
|Average high °C (°F)||30.8|
|Daily mean °C (°F)||25.7|
|Average low °C (°F)||20.7|
|Record low °C (°F)||14.6|
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||62|
|Average relative humidity (%) (at Daytime)||65||59||60||69||73||74||73||71||71||74||74||72||69.6|
Kurunegala is a Sinhalese majority city; there are sizable communities belonging to other ethnic groups, such as Moors, Tamils, Burghers and Malays. Residents from ethnic minorities live in all parts of the city, however, sizeable communities of Moors and Tamils live in the areas of Teliyagonna and Wilgoda.
Source: 2015 Census Data
The common languages of Kurunegala, depending on social classes, social circles, and ethnic backgrounds are Sinhalese, Tamil and English.
Buddhism is the main and the most widely practiced religion in Kurunegala. The town is also home to a wide range of other religious faiths and sects including Hinduism, Christianity and Islam.
Prominent Buddhist temples in Kurunegala include Athkanda Raja Maha Viharaya It is said that the fabled Jathaka stories were composed at this historic temple. The temple is located on the left hand side of the Kandy-Kurunegala main road in the vicinity of the Kurunegala town,Ibbagala Raja Maha Viharaya, Angangala cave temple, Wilbawa Purana Viharaya and Bauddhaloka Viharaya. An ancient replica of Buddha's footprint that is found on the summit of Sri Pada (Adam's Peak), a little dagoba and some paintings depicting the Buddha and his disciples can be seen at the Ibbagala Raja Maha Viharaya.
There are also numbers of Christian/Catholic churches, Mosques and Hindu temples are in the city. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Kurunegala's bishop is headquartered in the town. The Church of Ceylon, which is the Anglican Church in Sri Lanka, operates a diocese in Kurunegala covering the North-Central Province and Kurunegala, Kandy, Matale, Kegalle and Anuradapura districts.
The Kurunegala Municipality Council is responsible for the overall administration, sanitary, welfare, and other general activities of the city. The Municipality Council headed by a mayor with 21 other elected members. The 21 elected members represent the following wards:
Kurunegala is a central city in Sri Lanka. It is directly connected to a large number of major cities and towns of the island.
Kurunegala can be reached by the railway on the Northern railway line.
By road, it is connected to Colombo, Kandy, Matale, Puttalam, Trincomalee, Negombo, Anuradhapura and Kegalle. Due to its status as a crossroads city,the city is a good base for exploring important ancient landmarks a short distance away.
The Kurunegala central bus stand, opened in 2005, is one of Sri Lanka's most efficient and modern bus stands, with a parking capacity of about 200 buses.[ citation needed ]
Central Expressway Construction
Under the directives of MoHEH, RDA has initiated a study to find out a suitable road corridor to construct the expressway from Kadawatha to Dambulla via Kurunegala under Central Expressway Project. The second stage of the construction of the Central Expressway Project (CEP Project-2) from Meerigama to Kurunegala was launched on 2017 February 1. km), Mirigama to Kurunegala (39.28 km), Pothuhera to Galagedara (32.5 km) and Kurunegala to Dambulla (60.3 km).Subsequently, the expressway will cross Gampaha, Meerigama, Kurunegala while ending at Dambulla. The project has been implemented in four stages; from Kadawatha to Mirigama (37
The Teaching Hospital Kurunegala is the only one of that kind in NWP, is situated on the Colombo Kurunegala road about 0.75 k.m. away from the city towards Colombo. Teaching Hospital Kurunegala is one of the largest hospitals in Sri Lanka. The bed count is over 1700 and the staff is over 3500. The hospital spreads over 35 acres land and serves people through more than 100 units. The teaching hospital Kurunegala caters more than 1.2 million patients annually. This number includes the patients from the other districts also, namely Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Trincomalee, and Mathale. There are some other leading private-sector health care service providers in north western province equipped with cutting-edge technology.
Kurunegala is home to some of the island's oldest and leading schools.
The Wayamba University of Sri Lanka is situated in Kuliyapitiya, while the Open University of Sri Lanka, the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology, the National Institute of Business Management, the College of Technology, the National Apprentice Industrial Training Authority, the Wayamba Technical College, the National Youth Council and Vocational Training Authority have centres in the city. Most of the private-sector higher educational institutions also have branches in Kurunegala.
Major sporting venues in and around Kurunegala include:
Kurunegala is one of the outstation cities that is popular for cricket and produced a number of cricketers that represented the nation. One of the best known spin bowlers of all time in Sri Lanka, Rangana Herath is an iconic cricketer from Kurunegala.
Kandy is a major city in Sri Lanka located in the Central Province. It was the last capital of the ancient kings' era of Sri Lanka. The city lies in the midst of hills in the Kandy plateau, which crosses an area of tropical plantations, mainly tea. Kandy is both an administrative and religious city and is also the capital of the Central Province. Kandy is the home of the Temple of the Tooth Relic, one of the most sacred places of worship in the Buddhist world. It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1988. Historically the local Buddhist rulers resisted Portuguese, Dutch, and British colonial expansion and occupation.
North Western Province is a province of Sri Lanka. The province consists of the districts of Kurunegala and Puttalam. Its capital is Kurunegala, which has a population of 28,571. The province is known mainly for its numerous coconut plantations. Other main towns in this province are Chilaw (24,712) and Puttalam (45,661), which are both small fishing towns. The majority of the population of Wayamba province is of Sinhalese ethnicity. There is also a substantial Sri Lankan Moor minority around Puttalam and Sri Lankan Tamils in Udappu and Munneswaram. Fishing, prawn farming and rubber tree plantations are other prominent industries of the region. The province has an area of 7,888 km², and a population of 2,370,075.
Kurunegala is a district in North Western Province, Sri Lanka. Consists of 4812.7 km2 48,1270 Hectares and Consists 30 Divisional Secretariats, 1610 Grama Niladari Divisions and 4476 total Villages. It consists of 14 Electorate Divisions, 02 Municipal Council, 19 Urban Councils, 15 Parliamentary Ministers, 47 Provincial Council Members, 15 Ministers and 337 Local Council Members.
Maliyadeva College is a national school controlled by the Sri Lankan central government. It is located in Kurunegala, Sri Lanka, and was established in 1888 by the Buddhist Theosophical Society, led by Colonel Henry Steel Olcott. It is one of Sri Lanka's oldest schools. Today, the school accommodates 5,000 students. The term "Devans" is used to refer to the former and present pupils of Maliyadeva College.
Dambadeniya (DMBD) is a ruined ancient city situated in the North Western Province (Wayamba), Sri Lanka on the Kurunegala - Negombo main road. It served as the capital of Sri Lanka in the mid 13th century. Much of Dambadeniya still lies buried on a huge fortified rock. Dambadeniya is situated about 31 km from Kurunegala, the modern day capital of the North Western Province. Dambadeniya is situated about 4 km from Giriulla.
Mirigama is a town in Gampaha District, Sri Lanka. It is located 57 km (35 mi) from Colombo, and 34 km (21 mi) from Negombo.
Welagedara Stadium is a multi-use stadium that are usually hosted international and local cricket matches and any other events in Kurunegala, Sri Lanka.The stadium can hold at least 10,000 spectators.The Stdium has been regularly hosted international tour matches, unofficial test matches and U19 one-day games.
The Kingdom of Dambadeniya was a medieval kingdom in what is present day Sri Lanka. The kingdom's rulers reigned from 1220–1345.
The Central Province is one of the nine provinces of Sri Lanka, the first level administrative division of the country. The Central Province is primarily in the central mountainous terrain of Sri Lanka. It is the 6th largest province by area and is home to 2.5 million people. It is bordered by North Central Province to the north, Uva Province to the east, North Western Province to the west and Sabaragamuwa Province to the south and west. The province's capital is Kandy.
Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic; commonly known as the ශ්රී දළදා මාළිගාව, is a Buddhist temple in Kandy, Sri Lanka. It is located in the royal palace complex of the former Kingdom of Kandy, which houses the relic of the tooth of the Buddha. Since ancient times, the relic has played an important role in local politics because it is believed that whoever holds the relic holds the governance of the country. The relic was historically held by Sinhalese kings. The temple of the tooth is a World Heritage Site mainly due to the temple and the relic.
Ridi Viharaya or Silver Temple is a 2nd-century BCE Theravada Buddhist temple in the village of Ridigama, Sri Lanka. Built during the reign of Dutthagamani of Anuradhapura, the temple is considered as the place where the silver ore, which provided silver to complete Ruwanwelisaya; one of the largest stupa in Sri Lanka, was discovered. According to the chronicles Mahavamsa and Thupavamsa, the Ridi Viharaya complex was built in gratitude for helping him cherish his dream of completing Ruwanwelisaya.
Kundasale is a former town, now a suburb of Kandy in Kandy District, Central Province of Sri Lanka. The town is situated 7 km (4.3 mi) to the southeast of the centre of Kandy. The population is about 150,000.
Danowita is a small town in the western province of Sri Lanka. It is 50 kilometres (31 mi) to Colombo, 59 kilometres (37 mi) to Kandy, and 45 kilometres (28 mi) to Kurunagala. The A1 highway passes by Danowita. Bandaranaike International Airport is the nearest airport.
The Central Expressway (E04), is a proposed road project that will link the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, with Kandy. It will provide a fast alternative to the existing A1 Road, which has a lot of bottlenecks and difficult terrain near Kandy.
Udugama Sri Buddharakkitha Thero was a Sri Lankan Buddhist monk, who was the 20th Mahanayaka of the Asgiriya chapter of Siyam Nikaya. He was presented with the religious title of Agga Maha Pandita by the government of Myanmar on March 7, 2007, in recognition of his contribution to the purification, perpetuation and propagation of Buddhism. His complete title was Most Venerable Agga Maha Panditha Udugama Sddharmakirthi Sri Dhammadassi Rathanapala Buddharakkhithabhidhana Mahanayaka Thero.
Kandyan era frescoes are mural paintings created during the Kingdom of Kandy (1469–1815) in Sri Lanka, a time when kings gave a special place to arts and literature.
The following is an alphabetical list of topics related to Sri Lanka.
Asgiri Maha Viharaya is a Buddhist monastery located in Kandy, Sri Lanka. It is the headquarters of the Asgiriya chapter of Siyam Nikaya, one of the two Buddhist monasteries that holds the custodianship of sacred tooth relic of Buddha kept in Sri Dalada Maligawa, Kandy. The chief incumbent of the Asgiri Maha Viharaya is the Mahanayaka thero of Asgiri chapter of Siyam nikaya, a leading Buddhist monastic fraternity in Sri Lanka. The present chief incumbent of Asgiri Maha Viharaya is Venerable Warakagoda Sri Gnanarathana Thero. Asgiri Maha Vihara traces its origin from the Wanavasi sect of the Dimbulagala forest monastery of Polonnaruva. Currently, 565 Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka function under Asgiri Viharaya of Kandy.
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