Kalutara Temple (Viharaya) and the Bo Tree- are the first two highlights any traveller would see when they are entering the Kalutara district. These attractions have historical stories that should be learned by the younger generations.
The Bo Tree
It’s a known fact that the Lord Buddha attained Enlightenment under a Bo Tree in Bodhgaya, India. The Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi in Anuradhapura is a sapling of this Bo Tree in India. Later, 32 saplings of Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi were planted across Sri Lanka, and the Kalutara Bo Tree is one of them.
The original Kalutara Bo Tree only survived until the 15th century AD. Then, a Pandyan prince planted a Bo Tree in Kalutara to get the support of the locals, which is what you get to see and worship even today.
Sri Lanka was invaded by the Portuguese, Dutch, and the English from time to time, and the Kalutara Bo Tree was almost ruined by them. However, none of them could destroy the tree in full.
One of the best things to do in Kalutara during your stay at Turyaa Kalutara Hotel is to visit the Kalutara Viharaya. It’s one of the very few hollow stupas in the world.