One can easily reach Pothgul Rajamaha Vihara by travelling nearly 4 km ahead from Ratnapura town along Pothgul Vihara road and then proceeding about 2.5 km forth across Karangoda by turning right at Kotamulla junction. This place of worship is located on top of a wonderful mountain which is in the opposite side of Kalu River, parallel to Sabaragamuwa Maha Saman Devale. This sanctuary has also been gifted with few land-grants as an honor to Maha Dhamma Rakkhitha thero who once gave shelter to King Walagamba who was hiding himself here and there due to rival calamities. A recumbent sculpture of Lord Buddha that would measure about 37 cubits long and a small stupa has been erected in a boulder cavern which is also enriched with drip-ledges.


An endless dark tunnel and a bottomless deep well that is on the boulder are among the amazing things available in this sacred place. Folklore recites that a flower fallen into this well would appear from the well in the land of Saman Devale. The authors have no assurance as how far the folklore speaks the truth.

The Buddhist canon penned at Mathale Aluvihara was rerecorded at Pothgul Rajamaha Vihara and distributed to all the temples in Sabaragamuwa and Sothern province in the reign of King Walagamba. As this is a place dense with various and numerous books, it was entitled as “Pothgul Vihara”.An extensive fact is that many people have stayed here helping to make library books. The small piece of circle that is removed when binding books is locally called “Karan”. A small heap of Karan eventually mounted at bottom of the bolder hill, where Pothugal Vihara is located. This Karan mass could be viewed as a large mountain. In pursue of the fact village was named as “Karangoda”. This clearly implies the mass collection of books that have been reserved in this place of honor.


For the subsistence and maintenance of this temple King has granted tree villages namely Veragama, Ayagama and Porohinna. Pothugal vihara is a bureau that belongs to Pelmadulla Rajamaha Vihara. Vehalle Dhammadinna thero the incumbent of Sri Pada, Sri Medhankara thero from Galle, the incumbent thero of Sabaragamuwa and low country and Malimbada Dhammadhara thero the incumbent of Pelmadulla Rajamaha Vihara have also abided in this place of worship.

All the live and material properties that belong to Angammana Vihara were offered to Pothugul Vihara by Panavenne thero though after a while these properties were plundered and destroyed by Portuguese in the same way they plundered all the properties in Sabaragamuwa Saman Devale, when they were invading Sabaragamuwa region. There after they have used this sanctuary as one of their fortresses. Among all the temples done by King Walagamba single cannot be seen today. Only the premises of this sacred place and constructions done by Kirthi Sri Rajasinha remain unto now.

Five village grants were donated to this vihara by King Sri Vikrama Rajasinha in the days of incumbent Millatiye Shilawansha thero. Every painting in the image house belong to Mahanuwara epoch. Thus it is our responsibility to safeguard this sacred place that has been a great support in enhancing doctrinal knowledge of monks, elites and inhabitants in Sabaragamuwa.

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