Points of Interest - Anuradhapura

Sri Maha Bodhi

Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi is a sacred fig tree in the Mahamewna Gardens, Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka. It is said to be the right-wing branch (southern branch) from the historical Sri Maha Bodhi at Buddha Gaya in India under which Lord Buddha attained Enlightenment. It was planted in 288 BC, and is the oldest living human-planted tree in the world with a known planting date.[Today it is one of the most sacred relics of the Buddhists in Sri Lanka and respected by Buddhists all over the world.

The other fig trees that surround the sacred tree protect it from storms and animals such as monkeys, bats, etc.

In April 2014, the government banned all construction within 500 meters of the tree. Only construction that obviously will not harm the tree will be allowed.

In the 3rd century BC, it was brought to Sri Lanka by Sangamitta Theri, the daughter of Emperor Asoka and founder of an order of Buddhist nuns in Sri Lanka. In it was planted by King Devanampiya Tissa on a high terrace about 6.5 m (21.3 ft) above the ground in the Mahamevnāwa Park in Anuradhapura and surrounded by railings.

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