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Day1
Program:
After breakfast leave for Rathnapura. Exploring Gem Mines & Museums and streets where gem traders selling gems and also you can buy gems from the street traders at a reasonable price. Visit Maha Saman Dewalaya at Rathnapura. Evening transfer back to the Hotel
Route:
Colombo > Rathnapura & Back to Colombo (From any Location Tour can be arranged)
Distance:
approx: 190 Km
Drive Time:
approx: 5 hours drive
Meal Plan:
Lunch in a Local Restaurant
Places that can visit on this day:
Gem mines in Rathnapura

Gem mines in Rathnapura

There are many gem mines found around Ratnapura, about 200 of them working mines. Visitors can visit selected gem mines and explore the age old tradition of gem mining, observe the manual process of miners dig, wash and sift the stones whilst looking zealously for the precious stones lying amongst the ordinary. On the way back visitors can also meet the lapidarists who bring out the hidden splendour of the uncut gem stones. It is advisable to verify the authenticity of the Gems you wish to purchase, this can be done at the State Gem Corporation in Colombo or at a government certified gem valuation agencies.

Maha Saman Devalaya

Maha Saman Devalaya

One of the four reputed devalays for Saman, a Buddhist God, sited on the bank of the Kalu Ganga, situated 3 kilometers from Ratnapura town. It is said that this devale was originally built by AryaKamadeva, one of the ministers of the king Parakramabahu II (1263-1270 AD), to fulfil a vow. This was reconstructed by King Rajasinghe II, on the same location of the SamanVihare. Earlier it had been destroyed by the Portuguese and had built their fort and a church. They had used this place as the centre for administration and trading purposes in the province. The restoration of this sacred place was started after defeating the foreign invaders and the Samanvihara became Samandevale, which was systematically designed and constructed. It is now considered as one of the best architectural designs among the other places of its kind. The people especially in the Sabaragamuwa Province believe in God Saman as the protector of this area so their beliefs and rituals reflect the god. This devale holds a clolourfulperehera in the month of August every year. A large crowd of devotees visits it during this season. Twin-faced “Mahababa” is one of the interesting charachers, which is unique to this perehera. This is an ideal opportunity to see Sabaragamuwa dance as well.

END OF THE TOUR
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