The Sabaragamuwa Maha Saman Devalaya is considered the main Devalaya of deity Saman except for the Shrine at top of Sri Pada.
When they first landed in Sri Lanka, the Portuguese armies marched towards Seethawaka looting and destroying all Buddhist structures. Saman Devalaya was among the structures that got affected. Due to being constructed on higher grounds, the temple grounds were considered a perfect location for the Portuguese fort. Later the King Keerthi Sri Rajasinghe (1747 – 1781) marched from Kandy and regained Ratnapura, destroying the Portuguese Fort, and re-built the Maha Saman Devalaya on the site.