Day Trip to the Sacred City of Anuradhapura

Located in the heart of the Cultural Triangle, the ancient city of Anuradhapura was documented as the first kingdom of Sri Lanka, dating to the 4th century BC. It was during the peak of this kingdom that Buddhism became the established religion in the country, which is signified by the dominating structure of the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhiya along with other temples and ruins dotted around the historic town. Stroll along the remnants of the past around the ancient kingdom. Explore the most popular attractions in Anuradhapura on thus day tour, from the stunning ancient temples like the Ruwanveliseya to the glistening waters of the Tissa Weva. Embark on an exciting journey as you explore the best attractions in this ancient kingdom.

per adult from




11 to 12 hours


Mobile ticket

Select Date and Travellers

No tour options available.

  • What's included :
    • Air-conditioned vehicle
    • Private transportation
    • Bottled water
    • Entry/Admission - Isurumuniya Temple
    What's excluded :
    • Personal expenses
  • This is a typical itinerary for this product

    Stop At: Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi, Anuradhapura Sri Lanka

    The Sacred Jaya Siri Maha Bodhi in Anuradhapura is reckoned as the oldest surviving historical tree in the world. It was brought to Sri Lanka by the Theri Sangamitta, daughter of Emperor Asoka and was planted in the Mahameghavana Park in Anuradhapura in 249 BC by King Devanampiyatissa. It is said to be the southern branch of the Jaya Siri Maha Bodhi at Buddha Gaya in India under which Lord Buddha attained Enlightenment.The Mahavamsa or the Great Chronicle of the Sinhalese provides an elaborate account of the establishment of the Jaya Siri Maha Bodhi in the island.

    Duration: 1 hour

    Stop At: Ruwanwelisaya, Abhayawewa Rd, Anuradhapura 50000 Sri Lanka

    Once considered to be the fifth largest monument in the world, the Ruwanveliseya is another ancient stupa that can narrate endless tales of the ancient Kingdom of Anuradhapura. Built by King Dutugemunu in the 1st century BC to commemorate the unification of the entire country after overthrowing the Cholas, this UNESCO World Heritage Site also acts as a place of pilgrimage too. The reason for the stupa to become a sacred place of pilgrimage to many devout Buddhists is the fact that it serves as a part of Solosmasthana and the Atamasthana (The 16 and 8 sacred places the Lord Buddha visited when he arrived to the island).

    Duration: 45 minutes

    Stop At: Isurumuniya Temple, At Royal Pleasure Gardens, Anuradhapura 50000 Sri Lanka

    Located in Anuradhapura, Isurumuniya Viharaya was built in the 3rd century BC by King Devanampiyatissa. It was initially called the Meghagiri Viharaya and is believed to be the first temple in which the Sacred Tooth Relic of the Lord Buddha was housed before the capital shifted to Polonnaruwa. Apart from being a major place of worship, there are notable features such as the Elephant Pond, the Isurumuniya Lovers carving, and carvings of the Royal Family. It is of course, the Isurumuniya Lovers that take centre stage, as the carving depicts a tragic love story that has been told for centuries and acts as a major turning point for the Sri Lankan monarch of old.

    Duration: 1 hour

    Stop At: Dagoba of Thuparama, Anuradhapura Sri Lanka

    Considered to be the oldest stupa in the country and, arguably, the oldest in the world, the Thuparama Stupa in Anuradhapura, has origins that go all the way back to the 3rd century BC, during the reign of King Devanampiyatissa. However, there is also an inscription to claim that the place of worship was built during the reign of King Gajabahu in the 2nd century AD. Located in the Mahamewnava Gardens of Anuradhapura, the walls of the stupa are steeped in many tales and elements that are of great interest to the history buff. The original design of the stupa was one that resembled that of a ‘heap-of-paddy-rice’, however, due to the many invasions from India and Europe, the original temple was looted and destroyed, and was only fully restored in the 19th century, in the form of the typical bell shape that you would normally see in any stupa.

    Duration: 45 minutes

    Stop At: Rathna Prasadaya, Abhayagiri Complex Anuradhapura, Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka

    Literally translated as Jewel Palace, the Ratnaprasadaya, located in Anuradhapura, belongs to the Abhayagiri Monastery complex and was built by King Kanittha Tissa during the 2nd century AD. Once believed to be a structure so magnificent that it was deserving of the title, ‘Jewel Palace’, only its foundations in the form of the large monolithic stones can be seen in the present day, however, it is still possible to reimagine how it would have looked like by understanding the illustrious history it possesses. Before it was confirmed to be a palace, it was called the Elephant Stables, due to the large monolithic stone pillars that graced the complex.

    Duration: 45 minutes

    Stop At: Twin Baths (Kuttam Pokuna), Watawandana Road, Anuradhapura 50000 Sri Lanka

    One of the best specimen of bathing tanks or pools in ancient Sri Lanka is the pair of pools known as Kuttam Pokuna. The said pair of pools were built by the Sinhalese in the ancient kingdom of Anuradhapura. These are considered one of the significant achievements in the field of hydrological engineering and outstanding architectural and artistic creations of the ancient Sinhalese. Water for the ponds were brought from the Bulankulama / Puliyankulama Tanks, passed trough a de-silting, purifying process and sent to the ponds. These ponds would have been used by the senior monks of Abhayagiriya Monastery as there is a large pond called Et-pokuna where more than 2000 Bhikkhus could use it at a time for bathing.

    Duration: 45 minutes

  • Departure Point :
    Traveler pickup is offered
    We pick up from all hotels and places in Negombo and Colombo Airports
    • Bandaranayake Intl Airport, Colombo Sri Lanka
    Departure Time :
    7:00 AM
    Return Detail :
    Hotel Pickup :
    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Near public transportation
    • Infants must sit on laps
    • Most travelers can participate
    • This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
    • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
    • Face masks required for guides in public areas
    • Face masks provided for travelers
    • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
    • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
    • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
    • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
    • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
    • Guides required to regularly wash hands
    • Regular temperature checks for staff
    • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
    • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
  • You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.



Age Req.


Fitness Req.


Group Size


Organised by Crystal Holidays

Activity ID: V-240142P156

More like this

Is this your business?

If this is your business, Claim Your Listing so you can manage and update your profile through our Business Portal.

Or you can improve this listing by Suggesting an Edit .