Tissamaharamaya, also known as Mahagama, was discovered by the Prince Mahanaga, brother of the famous King Devanampiyatissa in the 3rd Century BC.
The city of Tissamaharama is documented to have been in its peak during the time of King Kavantissa, where the well-known stupas of Maha Dagoba, Sandagiri Dagoba, Yatala Dagoba and Menik Dagoba and the beautiful man-made reservoirs of Tissa Wewa and Debara Wewa were built.
Tissamaharama Sri Lanka, once a sanctuary from marauding Dravidian invaders from Southern India, is an ideal access point for the nearby Yala National Park, Bundala National Parks and the Katharagama Pilgrimage.
The man-made lake of Tissa Wewa in Tissamaharama was built by King Kavantissa in the 2nd century BC, and lies on the north end of the city. The embankment of Tissa Wewa is 11,000 feet long (two miles) and 25 feet high with an area of approximately 550 acres.
The Tissa Wewa in Tissamaharama receives water through the ancient canal of Jaya Ganga and fills the tanks of Ranmasu Uyana and the Royal water garden next to the Isurumuniya Viharaya.
According to the History Chronicles, around 12,000 Arahats have lived in the Tissamaharama area during the times of King Kavantissa. The Maha Dagoba, Sandagiri, Yatala Dagoba and further down about half a kilometre is the Menik Dagoba, all believed to have built by the King Mahanaga in the 3rd century BC to provide housing for the monks in Tissamaharama.
You can find regular buses from most major towns which will take you to up to Panigama and tuk tuks are available from there to Tissamaharama.