Seetha Amman Temple
Sri Lanka’s ancient history is closely intertwined with the old Sanskrit tale of the Ramayana, with many locations in the country steeped in old legends. The area in Nuwara Eliya referred to as Seetha Eliya, is believed to be one of the places where King Ravana held the kidnapped Sita, wife of Lord Rama.
The Seetha Amman Temple in Seetha Eliya, has been constructed in what is believed to be the last location Sita was held captive by Ravana. It is possibly the only temple in the world to be dedicated to Sita, and is extremely popular amongst the Hindu community, as well as tourists.
Although built in the early 2000s, the location of the temple appears to have been a sacred site for much longer, as supported by the discovery of three idols that have been worshipped for centuries. The idols were discovered in a nearby stream, with one purported to be of Sita herself. The stream itself is believed to have been where Sita bathed herself.
Legend states that the location of the temple is where the monkey god Hanuman attempted to rescue Sita from the clutches of Ravana, although Sita refused and asked for her husband to rescue her instead. Deep impressions on a nearby rock are believed by some to be imprints left by Hanuman, and others to be imprints left behind by Ravana’s royal elephant.
Surrounded by several Ashoka trees, the legendary tale of the temple is not the only feature that attracts travellers and devotees. The rustic appeal of the mountainous region, with forests and the glorious backdrop of the central highlands certainly make for a heightened experience of spiritual solace.