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Ambalantota. The Artifacts Town

Ambalantota is a tidbit for Sri Lankan archaeologists and scientists from around the world, thanks to the numerous archaeological artifacts discovered in this area of the deep south of Sri Lanka. Today Ambalantota is a small town on the way from Hambantota to Tangalle. It is here that evidence of the history of the times of the Sanskrit and the pro-Sanskrit civilizations is found. Finds relate to the history of man 7000 years ago.

Archaeological Monument of Godawaya
The human skeleton found in Godawaya is at least 7000 years old. Several prehistoric stone tools, as well as animal remains, were discovered from the Godawaya at Archaeological excavations in Ambalantota.Archaeologist Kay Sanat and his team of archaeologists together with German scientists began research of this area after discovering tools made of granite and quartz. These tools were used by prehistoric people on the territory of the current abandoned quarry. The skeleton was sent to the Colombo laboratory for research.

The quarry was abandoned in 2004. And then archaeologists noticed pieces of quartz on part of the quarry wall. Prehistoric man used these tools, made of granite and quartz. The head of the group of researchers Upali Jayasinghe said that during the excavations a skeleton of a prehistoric man was discovered. The skeleton was found in the burial chamber, his head was directed to the north.

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Godawaya is a small fishing village located in the mouth of the Walawe River between the Ambalantota and Hambantota. Originally, this place of archaeological excavation was called the Goda Pawata Pattana or Gotta Pabbata Patana because of the huge rock overlooking the Indian Ocean, at the foot of which the excavation site is located. After the disappearance of the civilization of prehistoric man, it was a port town and a transit point on the sea Silk Rout, at least in the 2nd century AD. The year is now a reserve. Beach villages are important for nesting leatherback turtles.

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Ramba Rajamaha Viharaya
The temple complex in the region of ancient Ruhuna is located on the banks of the Walawa Ganga River, in the village of Udarata on the Nonagama-Ratnapura road. It is about 12.8 km. from Ambalantota.
Maha Nagakula was the capital of the Ruhuna Kingdo in the south of ancient Sri Lanka in the 11th century AD. Ramba Viharaya was the main temple of Maha Nagakula town, where a large number of artifacts were found during excavations. Ramba Viharaya was the Royal Temple. In this temple, King Vijayabahu I was hiding, who arrived here in 1055, while he was planning a war against the Chola invaders from South India. Sri Lanka belonged to the Cholas for 53 years.

From here, the area of Ambalantota, the king led agitation among the rulers of even very separated countries, such as Burma, Kalinga and Pandya, in order to form an alliance against the Chola dynasty. The army of Vijayabahu I made three attacks to surround Polonnaruwa and defeated Chola. His son Vikramabahu continued to reign in Polonnaruwa, and the prince Parakramabahu continued the best military traditions of his ancestors. These reasons prompted historians and archaeologists to carry out research in the field of Ambalantota, which played such an important role in the history of the whole of Lanka. They found a large number of monuments scattered on an area of 200 acres of land in the jungle.

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Ramba Rajamaha Viharaya was the most important religious and academic center of Ruhuna between the 10th and 12th centuries. Scientists of the time, such as the Monk Piyadassi Thera and the Reverend Mahanagasen Thera, lived here in other temples around him. It was a region of developed civilization. A large number of artifacts, which were found by various research groups of scientists during the dry season, prove this fact. The place itself is unique, because here was the ancient international port Godawaya. And this fact is irrefutable.

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Traders usually traveled from China to the Arab part of the Indian Ocean, and Sri Lanka served as an ideal place for transit trade (import of re-export), where customs duties were collected.
The inscriptions of the 1st century BC showed that King Gajabahu donated funds collected as a customs duty for the benefit of the temple. It is believed that this was near the mouth of the Walawa river, and that the ships followed the journey to Mahanagakula.

An unusual Buddha image from white sandstone was found here during the excavation. The image differs from what was found on other shakes, since this image was hollow.

When we speak of Ramba Vihara, one must speak of Manavulu Sandeshaya, a poem in the Pali language, which contains about 30 stanzas. This is said to be the answer to the Buddhist message of the priest from Ramanna Desh, named Maha Kashyapa. He sent a letter to the Pali high priest in Ramba Viharaya, asking about life in Sri Lanka. But in reality, under the author's name, Manavulu Sandesaya, the heir of King Parakramabahu, King Vijayabahu II, was hiding. According to the chronicles, he believed that the chief priest at that time was Nagasena. There is also an inscription in the Pali language about Ramba Viharaya. Under the trees of Ramba of the Banyan clan, the priests taught religion. In this regard, Ramba Viharaya (Banyan Vihara) is also referred to as Kehelgamuwa.

During the 11th century, ships arrived from Ramanna Deshaya (then Lower Burma) to the southern part of Lanka, including Godavaya. This area was an economically prosperous region in the 15th century AD. At the time of the Portuguese and Dutch conquests, the chief priest named Maha Kappinna lived here.
Although this place was a role model, and the monastery in Maha Nagakula during the 11th and 12th centuries flourished, now this place is somewhat deserted. Restoration and restoration of some of the exhibits is still ongoing.

Gotha Pabbata Rajamaha Viharaya
Gotha Pabbata Rajamaha Viharaya is located on the rocky place of the mouth near Walawe River in Godawaya between Ambalantota and Hambantota. The temple is believed to have been built by the local king Gotabaya (the father of King Kawantissa) in the 2nd century BC.

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Sri Lankan and German archaeologists excavated this monastic complex and on the western side of the monastery and discovered the ancient House of Image and House of Head. Three different statues were found here: standing Buddha about 3.5 meters high and two statues of a Bodhisattwa, each about 1.80 meters in height. These statues even contain traces of the original paint.

Historians were particularly interested in the customs building on the eastern side of the ancient monastery. The building was decorated with an ornament depicting an elephant, placed in its trunk lotus flowers. Clay seals, like lids, bearing the lion's logo, were used to seal and seal goods and cargo to prove that the customs duty was paid.

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More about the history of the Hambantota area, where Ambalantota is located, you can find out by visiting these places, hotels owned or cooperated by Lankarus. Exciting historical excursions to the many priceless historical monuments of the Tangalle to Hambantota region are available in the home region of our company.

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