Sailatalarama Vihara lies 7km inland from Ambalangoda. This temple sits on a domed hill with broad views over spice plantations and lakes towards the ranges of the Province of Sabaragamuwa. The temple has a 35m-long sleeping Buddha statue, built by donations. Pilgrims approach the dagobas and devale (a complex designed for worshipping a Hindu or local Sri Lankan deity) via 208 steps, but there’s also a road to the top. The statue is new and not the most outstanding example of its type and the compulsory ‘donation’ for foreigners (Rs 250) is a bit steep, but it’s worth coming here for the rural scenery and the views. Also check out the photo on the wall of a German-based monk standing in front of a cow bowing down in gratitude to the monk for saving it from the slaughterhouse! A three-wheeler from Ambalangoda should cost about Rs 500 return, with waiting time.
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