The Lion Rock Citadel (Sigiriya), Sri Lanka
The Royal Citadel of King Kasyapa (479-496 AD) (A world heritage Site).The Lion Rock Citadel Sigiriya stands high above the surrounding plain, visible for miles in all directions. The rock rests on as steep mound that rises abruptly from the flat plain surrounding it. The rock itself rises 200m & is sheer on all sides, in many places overhanging the base. It is elliptical in horizontal plain with its flat summit spreading an area of 1.5 hectares taking a gradual slop along the long axis of the ellipse. The site is at once a palace & fortress.
Asia’s oldest surviving landscape garden Complex rampart, Grand urban planning with brilliant combination of geometric square module & natural topography.
On the terrace : On the terrace are Audience hall, Cobra Hood cave, caves & hollows, where early Buddhist monks lived, studied doctrine & meditated. Here we are at the Lion gate. We stroll into the mouth & through the lion’s throat to the iron stairways, begin the main climb.
Golden Dambulla Rock Temple (Rangiri Dambulu Temple) (A world Heritage site)
From the rainwater reservoir to the temple
On entering these elegantly portal led caves, we begin to feel like that we are right inside a cozy richly decorated tent hung with brilliant carpets. The rock ceilings are painted with intricate patterns of Buddhist images following the natural contours of the rock, with its gold sheen illuminating the caves. Dambulla rock temple is housed for a collection of 150 serene statues of Buddhist Order & the island’s history.
The Sacred City of Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka
Renovated Stupas, Ruins of Stupas, Monasteries & Temples ,Life-line: Great Ancient Man-made Lakes (Rainwater Reservoirs)
You must see the Glorious Golden Sand Stupa, Serene Samadhi Buddha Statue, Enormous Jetavana Dagoba, Isurumuniya Rock Temple, Sacred Sri Maha bodhi tree.
The Stupas second only to great pyramids
The capital of the island by King Pandukhabaya (437-366 BC), the builder of the first rainwater reservoir ( tank) of Lanka. The temples & monumental dagaba’s, amongst greatest architectural feats of its age. Almost all of the tanks have been restored & even to date provide the lifeline to farmers, the irrigation of the province.
Sacred Sri Maha Bodhi tree
The Buddhist nun Sanagamitta, as a gift from her father, the Mauryan Emperor Asoka in the 3rd century BC. Today, the huge specimen of this Peepal has no rival to the claim of being the oldest recorded tree in the world.
Loha Maha Prasada (Brazen Palace)
What we have today is ruins of a vast building, next to the sacred tree.
Golden Sand Stupa (Ruwan Weli Seya Dagoba)
Golden Sand Stupa (Ruwanweli Seya), contains a range of exhibits discovered on the site along with explanatory displays.
200m north of the Thuparama Vatadage, on the opposite side of the road are the ruins of the Royal Palace date from the 12th century AD, with glory and prestige.
the Ancient Kingdom of Reservoirs (846AD – 1302AD) Sri Lanka, A World Heritage Site
In between Wildlife at Minneriya National Park, Wasgomuwa National Park, Kaudulla National Park and Eco Hotels at Kandalama & Habarana. We mustn’t fail to see: The Sea of Parakrama, Polonnaruwa Vatadage, Gal Vihara, Stone book and Lankatilaka Vihara.
Just north of present-day Polonnaruwa town, 140km (90 miles) north of Kandy, are the ruins of ancient Polonnaruwa, which date from the late 10th century. The Royal Palace King Parakramabahu the great (1164-1196 AD). : It was a massive wood and stone structure seven storeys in height, with a floor plan of 31m by13m (100ft by 43ft).The upper floors were of wood, and only the massive, 3m (10ft) thick lower walls survive. Nissankamalla’s Palace King Nissankamalla (1187-1196 AD), The less well preserved than those of the Royal Palace, but are attractively located.
The Thuparama : The style of temple architecture which flourished at Polonnaruwa, and the only one to survive with its roof still in place.
Lata Mandapaya : West of the Vatadage is the Lata Mandapaya, a miniature dagoba encircled by stone columns topped with carved lotus buds, and surrounded by a carved stone trellis.
Kandy’s location over the river, Mango trees, the man-made lake right at the centre of the town, the surrounding hills, the nature reserve, the temple, the ambience, the royal history, botanical gardens, and cultural attractions around the city; everything about the town is beautiful. Look to the content of your heart & play Golf too .
The town centre, close to Kandy picturesque lake set in a bowl of hills, is a delightful jumble of old shops, antique & gemstone shops, a bustling market & fine selection of hotels, guesthouses & restaurants.
If you really want to get away from all the king’s culture & king’s men, there is wilderness. The rugged Knuckles Range (within the Central Massif), just east of Kandy, is the hill country’s last great wilderness area & a wonderful location for trekking, cycling & bird spotting. The highest peak in the Knuckles Range (KR) is 1904 m.