Nissanka Latha Mandapaya is an ancient, unique historical monument located in Polonnaruwa city. It was constructed by King Nissanka Malla who ruled the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa in 1187-1196. This place is named after him. “Mandapaya” is a pillared structure, open on all four sides with a roof. You can find Nissanka Latha Mandapaya near the western entrance of the “Dalada Maluwa”. Dalada Maluwa is a place where you can see the most sacred and oldest monuments of the Polonnaruwa city.
The most important feature of this Nissanka Latha Mandapaya is the shape of this building and the stone carvings of the stone pillars. Nissanka Latha Mandapaya is an actual work of art, built on an elevated stone platform accompanied by many stone pillars around it. These pillars have a unique shape of curved lotus stalks. There is a small stone stupa at the center of this platform which is now partially destroyed. There are eight pillars around this stupa each having a height of about 8 feet. According to a stone inscription, this place was used by the king to listen to Buddhist sermons or “pirith”. Originally, this building had a tilted wooden roof supported by stone pillars, but only the granite is preserved to this day. The entire building is surrounded by a stone fence.