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Poson Festival

A temple situated above the town of Mihintale, 11km from Anuradhapura, which is accessible by train from Colombo (206km).

The Poson Festival commemorates the conversion of Sri Lanka to Buddhism in the 3rd century BC. Illuminations and processions take place all over the country, but the best place to see the festival is at Mihintale.

It was here in this ancient city that Sri Lanka's king was converted to Buddhism by Arahat Maha Mahinda, the son of King Asoka (Emperor of India). As the king was hunting deer, Mahinda appeared to him in a grove and asked him a riddle about a mango tree (Ambasthale means mango tree). After the king had answered the riddle, he apparently agreed to follow the teachings of the Buddha and declared it state religion.

The Ambasthale Dagoba is a temple, which towers above the city of Mihintale, accessible by 1840 steps and built over the very spot where Mahinda is said to have appeared before the king.

Place : Ambasthale Dagoba, Mihintale
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