Sigirya Rock Fortress

Sigiriya Rock

Sigiriya rock commonly known by locals as the eighth wonder. It is an ancient palace and a fortress complex with major archaeological significance. Rock attracts hundreds and thousands of tourists each year. It is possibly one of the most visited tourist destination of the Island.

The rock fortress is located 15 Km away from Dambulla, one of the cities of cultural triangular of Sri Lanka. It is above 370 meters of sea level. Sigiriya Rock is a massive column rock standing alone nearly 100 meters (330 ft.) high.

The Sigiriya rock is believed that this place has served as a monastery according to the ancient Sri Lankan chronicle, the Chulvamsa The rock was selected by King Kasyapa (477 – 495 CE) to build a royal palace. After the death of king, it yet again became a Buddhist monastery until 14th century, when it was deserted.

Sigirya Rock Fortress
Sigirya Rock Fortress

UNESCO has listed Sigiriya as a World Heritage site and one of the best examples of ancient urban planning. Sigiriya gained international recognition due to the engineering capabilities displayed in its construction, the palace layout, frescoes and the mirror wall.

Ancient ruins at top of Sigiriya
Ancient ruins at top of Sigiriya

The fortress complex includes remnants of an ancient palace, surrounded by an extensive network of fortifications, vast gardens, ponds, canals and fountains.

The main entrance to the rock is located to the Northern side. It was designed in the form of a huge lion, and its feet can be seen today but unfortunately other parts have been destroyed. The name Sigiriya has originated due to this lion. The term has originated from the Sinhala word, ‘Sihagiri’.

Frescoes

Entire western wall is covered by frescoes, created during the time of King Kasyapa. Eighteen out of them have survived to this day.

They portray nude females and are considered to be either portraits of wives of King Kasyapa or priestess performing religious rituals. Even though the identity is unknown, paintings are unique and celebrating the beauty of females. Frescoes are of incredible historical significance.

Paintings at Sigiriya
Paintings at Sigiriya
Sigiriya Mirror Wall
Sigiriya Mirror Wall

Mirror Wall

Most remarkable part of Sigiriya is the Mirror wall. It is believed that during king’s reign it was polished comprehensively so that king could witness his reflection. Currently wall is strictly prohibited for public since the wall is painted with inscriptions and poems written by the visitors to Rock Fortress. The writings of the wall are clear evidence that the Sigiriya have been a popular tourist destination more than a thousand years ago.

Places near Sigiriya Rock

Dambulla cave temples are located close to the Sigiriya rock. Minneriya national park, Kaudulla National park, Namal uyana and Pidurangala rock few interesting places located close.

National Railway Museum

National Railway Museum

National Railway Museum is the national railway museum of Sri Lanka, located in Kadugannawa. The railway museum is owned by Sri Lanka Railways.

The museum was opened on 27 December 2014 in order to commemorate the 150th anniversary of railway service in Sri Lanka. Previously, the museum was located in Colombo.[2] The old museum has been opened in May 2009.

The museum has old engines, locomotives, rail cars, trolleys, carriages, machineries, and equipment’s that used since the beginning of Sri Lanka Railway.

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Bogoda Wooden Bridge

Highway Museum

Highway Museum, Kiribathkumbura

The Highway Museum is the first of its kind built in Sri Lanka. It is located in Kiribathkumbura, Kandy. The museum is maintained by the Road Development Authority (RDA).

Visitors can visit the place without any entrance fees. Also there is no time restrictions since it is located in an open space.

It has a pool of past construction equipment like Stone Road Rollers, Steam Road Rollers,Oil Road Rollers, Tar Boilers, Coal scales, Road Signs.

A model of the Bogoda Wooden Bridge is constructed there as well. It is stated that some of the equipment on exhibition is more than 175 years old.

Bogoda Wooden Bridge

Bogoda Wooden Bridge

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