Built in the 5 th century AD, this magnificent complex of geometrically laid gardens, pools, and fountains ( still operatable but not in function) as well as oldest surviving murals of maidens has been a palace of the King Kasyapa. Built on top of a 200m high rock, the entrance to the climb once has been through a lions head. Only the huge paws remain today.
Half way up the rock is beautifully painted bare breast ” Maidens ” with flowers whose existence is still a mystery. SIGIRIYA is a must to see in Sri Lanka since it considered as the eighth wonder of the world, The occupation of the gigantic fortress ended when Kasyapa killed himself in a battle with his brother .
Pidurangala Temple – 20 minutes
Pidurangala Royal Cave Temple was built by King kassyapa in 5th century A.D. Spread over 13 1/2 acres, the monastery gave sanctuary to 500 meditating bhikkus (Buddhist monks) and a very important place of Archaeological site. Pidurangala Temple is home for the Largest Image of – – Reclining “Buddha” Statue in Asia,built of Clay & Brick & 48 1/2 feet in Length.
Polonnaruwa – 45 minutes drive
Well preserved City full of Ancient Dagobas, Temples ( Hindu ), Ponds, Moonstones & Beautiful parks. Polonnaruwa which lies 216 km northeast of Colombo was the second capital of Sri Lanka after the destruction of Anuradhapura in 993 AD. Also known as Sri Lanka’s medieval capital (11th – 13th Century AD) is a well-preserved city full of ancient dagobas, moonstones, beautiful parks, massive buildings and stunningly beautiful statues.
The majestic King’s Council Chamber, the Lotus Bath, the Lanka Thilaka Viharaya, the Gal Viharaya (rock temple), Watadage ( Round Temple ), Atadage, Thiwanka Temple ( with Great wall paintings )and the statue of one of Polonnaruwa’s great king, King Parakramabahu, are a few of this capital’s memorable sights. The Sea of Parakrama – a vast 12th century man-made reservoir dominates the city.
Dambulla Temple – 10 minutes drive
Dating back to the 1st century BC, this is the most impressive cave temple in Asia. It has five caves under a vast overhanging rock, carved with a drip line to keep the interiors dry. In 1938 the architecture was embellished with arched colonnades and gabled entrances. Inside the caves, the ceilings are painted with intricate patterns of religious images following the contours of the rock. There are images of the Lord Buddha and bodhisattvas, as well as various Gods & Goddess.
Anuradhapura – 1 hour drive
Well preserved City, full of Ancient Dagobas, Temples ( Hindu ), Moonstones, Ponds & Beautiful
Parks – dated back to the 5th century BC. Walk through the ruins and discover the ancient remains of an old civilization, adorned with beautiful man made lakes. The area is plenty of species of birds and monkeys. Anuradhapura is where you can see the most historical l & the Oldest Tree in the World, The Bo Tree ( Ficus Religiosa ) is venerated by
Hundreds of Thousands of Buddhist all over the world
Ritigala Mountain – 45 minutes drive
Sri Lanka is blessed with so many diverse archaeological sites of historical and cultural values. One such site is the monastic complex on the lower slopes of the Ritigala Mountain – situated in Sri Lanka’s North Central Province, 25 miles (40 kilometers) southeast of Anuradhapura. These ruins are some of the most distinctive the island has to offer importance at 766 m above sea level, and 600 m above the surrounding plains, Ritigala is the highest mountain in northern Sri Lanka.
Aukana – 45 minutes drive
The Avukana statue is a standing statue of the Buddha near Kekirawa in North Central Sri Lanka. The statue, which has a height of more than 40 feet (12 m), has been carved out of a large granite rock face during the 5th century. It depicts a variation of the Abhaya mudra, and the closely worn robe is elaborately carved. Constructed during the reign of Dhatusena, it may have been made as a result of a competition between a master and a pupil. Avukana statue is one of the best examples of a standing statue constructed in ancient Sri Lanka. It is now a popular tourist attraction in the country.
Mihinthale rock – Sacred Buddist site – one hour drive
13 KM east of city of Anuradhapura on the Trincomalee road is the Mihintale rock. It is on this rock that the historic meeting between King Devanampiyatissa and Arahath Mahinda, the son of Emperor Asoka of India, is said to have taken place in 247BC. This meeting led to the King converting to Buddhism and the establishment and growth of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.
Namal Uyana ( Iron wood ) & Pink Quartz Mountain – 30 minutes drive
IRON WOOD – NA (in Singhalese)(MESUA FERREA)Tree is Endemic to Sri Lanka. The Jathika Namal Uyana in Sri Lanka is the largest ironwood forest and pink quartz mountain in Asia. The Ironwood Tree is endemic to Sri Lanka and the replanted forest is over 260 acres in extent. According to archeological researcher’s findings, the pink quartz in this historical place has a history of more than 550 millions of years. Namal Uyana is situated in 7kms from Madatugama junction of Colombo-Anuradhapura highway in Sri Lanka. Iron Wood forest is a unique forest in Sri Lanka where the Iron Wood trees dominate the vegetation of the 260 acres of forest. .