Thivanka Image House
Thivanka Image House
4.5
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles88 reviews
Excellent
43
Very good
35
Average
9
Poor
1
Terrible
0

Peter M
Melbourne, Australia1,293 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2023 • Friends
This in in Polonnaruva Sri Lanka. It was constructed by King Parakamabahu 1 (1153-1188). It is famous for its 100 paintings. It was covered by jungle for 500 years and rediscovered in 1855 by SM Burrows
Written 14 November 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Janka K
Brno, Czech Republic8,172 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022 • Couples
At the time that I visited the place, ti seems that the place was undergoing some reconstruction, or that it needed to start to be permanently protected from rain, as it was completely covered under scaffold tin roof.
I liked the ornaments on the outside part of the building - some statues were really preserved and very detailed. It must had been a lot of work to create them.
Written 2 April 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kai Wah
Malaysia3,578 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
This is one of my favourite parts of the ruins at Polonnaruwa Ancient Site. Another awe-inspiring architecture built by the King Parakramabahu, The Great since 12th century. Intricate details of carvings of the exterior complex with amazing murals/ wall paintings at the interior of the structure with three massive Buddha statues housed here, hence the given name as Thivanka which literally means three curves. No photo-takings allowed inside the complex in order to protect the murals. Must-visit as part of the sites at Polonnaruwa Ancient Site with entrance fee of USD25. Well worth the penny especially for history buff!
Written 12 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

DipuKV
Pune, India3,056 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019
Buddha statues, image houses, stupas galore! The Thivanka image house gives you a good glimpse of the beauty of the place!
Written 13 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

zaawaaz
Singapore, Singapore118 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2019
A clean place, and really hope when the visitors are inside the main area that they do not speak loudly as it is quite not so good ettiquette. Otherwise it is quite a spruced up building and the carvings are quite visible. Inside you can see some beautiful paintings. 15-minute visit.
Written 14 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jitub77
Singapore, Singapore54 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
This place was beautiful but we had to rush through to it because it was at the fag end and we were very short of time. The only reason we did go was because i had read reviews mentioning this as a must-see site and it did turn out to be one. Suggest planning ahead by making a list of such must-see places, the optimal route to cover these and the starting your visit. Hiring a local guide here will help.
Written 23 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ShvRm_Traveller
Goa, India578 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018 • Family
It is located towards the end of tour to Polonnaruwa Archaeological Sites and is one of the important place, which is a must visit. The place had served as a temple to Lord Buddha, having been built in 12th Century. The Temple is in ruined state, however, whatever remains, given an indication of past magnificence. The site is also import, from the point of view of ancient art and has frescoes on the interiors. The whole site is covered by a huge metal roof, to preserve, whatever is left. No photography is allowed inside the temple. The visitor going inside, have to follow a demarcated passage.
Written 24 November 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rob
Dublin, Ireland2,929 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2017 • Solo
This is the most northerly point in Polonnaruwa but it's worth making the journey up no matter what form of transport you are using. It's a fairly crumbling building but they built a canopy over it to help preserve it. Some parts are fairly intact and others well less so. you can go inside but you are lot allowed take any pictures so if you just have to visit yourself to see what it's like. Trust me it's worth it!
Written 3 February 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

mrdom
7,787 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2018 • Solo
Up the dirt road near Gal Vihara and the exit, this is a good option for cyclists because not many people come up here. The building is quite detailed and looks great from the outside and then the inside has remains of interesting frescoes and a quite unusual buddha statue. No photography is allowed and the staff peer down the hallway to enforce it.
Written 26 January 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Titus D
Sri Lanka6,908 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2017 • Friends
It's really historic place and you should visit it. It's around 2.4 Km away from main road. Good if you have a guide with you or at least a guide book is mandatory as either of them will explain the relevance and meaning of the drawings.
As the last place to visit in Polonnaruwa Archaeological site, should visit thisplace
Although it is not on the main road and not visited by the group tours you should visit this temple if you get the chance. It is very close to Gal Vihara and the two should be visited together.
At Thivanka Image house, you can see ancient classical arts and enchanting sculptures of the Polonnaruwa era. The word 'Thivanka' literally means 'three curves'. Since it is the largest image of Lord Buddha in this image house is curved in three places, it is called 'Thivanka'.
In Polonnaruwa, this place has one of the tallest brick built Lord Buddha statue named "Tivanka".
#The curves are from shoulder, hip and knee.
The shrine contains lots of beautiful fresco.
When we visited this place there was a person who explains almost all the important things about this ancient place.
This is another place for frescoes other than at Sigiriya but more accessible and are at ground level. Unlike Sigiriya this frescos are painted on the wall of a Buddhist temple
This image house has drawings which was done a couple of centuries ago.

Despite the outside being covered in scaffolding, it's still possible to see some fantastic stone carvings (quite unlike anything we'd seen in Anuradhapura).
The inside of the Image House has a church-like feeling in it. The keeper opened a small door so that we could walk on the corridor which runs behind the giant headless Buddha. Although the murals are worn out, they're still worthy of inspection.
#There are frescoes explains about Buddha. You have to watch carefully and understood what it is. There are no frescoes we have seen like these in the world the places I visited.
Both inside and outside the Image House is beautiful. It has currently with a huge roof constructed over the whole site for its preservation and protection.
# A headless standing Buddha inside, as well as the remains of beautiful paintings and artwork and wonderful carvings.
All those paintings are about stories, while in the entresols the Bodhisattva in Tusitha heaven. Inner room appear the incidents of Buddha. There are so many decorations to see. Inscriptions and chronicles saying this statue of Lord Buddha is decorated by a valuable jem earlier but it was disappeared & the statue was destroyed in 993 AC.
This historical site seems to be rarely visited or so it seemed when we did. They allow us to fully explore this valuable site.
Written 13 December 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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THIVANKA IMAGE HOUSE: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

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