The 13 meter high statue carved out of solid granite, goes back to the 5th century, to the reign of King Dathusena. (about 50 km south of Anuradhapura).On a rainy day, it is said, that one can see droplets of water falling off the tip of the statue’s nose hitting the ground exactly between the toes.- a testament to the architectural accuracy of the sculptor. The brick enclosure around and above was built recently to protect it from weather. According to tradition the magnificent 12m (30ft) standing Aukana Buddha was sculpted during the reign of Dhatusena in the 5th century – though some sources date it to the 12th or 13th century.
Aukana means ‘sun-eating’, and dawn, when the first rays light up the huge statue’s finely-carved features, is the best time to see it.There’s a local story that the statue is so finely carved that a drop of water would fall from its nose, without any breeze, between the Buddha’s feet. The reconstruction of the brick shelter over the statue looks like it was built by rail engineers, and detracts a little from the scene. There’s another statue nearby, inferior and incomplete but nevertheless worth a visit