Thiriyai - most interesting archaeological site of eastern Sri Lanka
Thiriyai, also known as Tiriyai or Tiriyaya, is a village at Sri Lanka’s East Coast, situated 42 km north of Trincomalee. On a hill in Thiriyai's hinterland is a Buddhist temple and archaeological site comprising Sri Lanka’s best preserved round temple, which is known as Girihadu Seya. The form of a circular Vatadage has become typical of Sri Lanka's classical Buddhist architecture. Remarkably, Tamils played a crucial roles in the construction of the ancient Buddhist temple of Thiriyai. Though this seems to be almost forgotten in today's ideological divides and guidebooks, many Tamil merchants trading along the shores of the Guld of Bengal in the first millenium, which corresponds to the Anuradhapura period, were in fact Buddhists and not Hindus. Thiriyai is still an off-the beaten path destination, although its worth visiting indeed: It’s both the most important and the most beautiful archaeological site of the Eastern Province.