Ratnapura or the City of Gems is the hub of sourcing natural gems in Sri Lanka. The famed Ceylon Blue Sapphire emerges from the mines in Ratnapura. The gem market in Ratnapura is an open market space where people buy and haggle over precious stones. Apart from this interesting trade, there is so much to be explored within this scenic city. Built during the Dambadeniya Kingdom, the Sabaragamuwa Maha Saman Devalaya is steeped in history and myth. The Devalaya has been a place where the Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha was kept and where the Dalada Perahera was conducted for over a decade. The adjoining museum houses parts of the initial structure of the temple as well as other historical artefacts. The Potgul Len Raja Maha Viharaya is yet another site of historic importance. The three caves of the temple house ancient Buddhist statues dating back to Anuradhapura and Kandyan eras.

Despite history and mystery surrounding Ratnapura, it is a beautiful city blessed by the splendor of nature. Drive along its picturesque paths and witness long plumes of white frothy water off in the distance, cascading down from great heights. Among such waterfalls in Ratnapura are Bopath Ella, Alupola Ella and Denhena Ella. Sinharaja Rainforestis also situated in close proximity to Ratnapura. Away from the gem market is a Dutch Fort that reflects Old Dutch architecture. The National Museum of Ratnapura is housed at the historic ‘Ehelepola Walawwa” which used to be the stately mansion of one of Kandy’s well-known aristocratic families.

Ratnapura - VISIT 2 SRI LANKA
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