Unraveling rich History of Sri Lanka
The ancient Sri Lankan civilization and its remnant ruins of the great cities that once flourished will fascinate you and are nothing short of staggering.
The ancient cities of Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya, Dambulla and sacred city of Kandy are the main towns that encompass the Cultural Triangle of Sri Lanka.
Our cultural triangle sites and cities are situated in the centre of our island nation, spreading from the north central to the central hills of the country. Some of the cities which includes ancient sacred city of Anuradhapura is a World Heritage site. These sites are frequently visited 365 days of the year by millions of local and foreign pilgrims, laymen, clergy and travelers alike. Extensive ruins of immense archeological value give a deep glimpse in to the islands history. Remarkably advanced civilizations developed by Kings of these eras have been deeply engraved in the history and pride of Sri Lanka.
You can easily reach Anuradhapura from Kalpitiya within a matter of two and a half hours. These great ancient civilizations have been based on agriculture, Buddhism, and ancient healing wisdoms of Ayurveda. The cultural triangle boasts of a by gone era through its Architecture, craftsmanship, landscaping and arts and cultural heritage of ancient Sri Lanka. To date Sri Lankans take pride in the ancient kingdom capitals.
Anuradhapura was the first Capital of Sri Lanka. It was perhaps one of the greatest monastic cities of the ancient world, especially when looking at Buddhism and its world history.
Anuradhapura was the ruling capital from 4th century B.C. to 11th century A.D. It was ruled by roughly close to 100 Kings.
The ruins of Anuradhapaura Sri Lanka’s first capital encompasses a myriad of sacred Buddhist sites of worship and importance such as monasteries, Dagobas (Dome like gigantic structures), palaces, ponds, the ancient Bo Tree which is a sap of the original Bo tree from Buddha Gaya under which it is believed Lord Buddha attained enlightenment. If you happen to be there on a full moon poya day you would be left wonder at the sea of worshippers dressed in white who offer their prayers and meditate under the Bo Tree in Anuradhapura. Aroma of burning sandalwood jos-sticks, Lotuses offered to the sites of worship, the traditional clay oil lamps burning will leave you with an unforgettable sense of spiritual experience of another culture.
Polonnaruwa was the Royal capital in medieval 1073 and late 13th century. Two of the greatest Kings of Polonnaruwa period who get credit for the city’s development were King Vijayabahu I and Parakramabahu I. Looking back at history introduction of Buddhism to Sri Lanka happened during 247 BC in Mihintale. It was King Devanampiya Tissa who reigned and converted to Buddhism on a symbolic Full moon Poya day that is all important to a Sri Lankan who follows the teaching of the Dhamma teachings of Buddhism.
The Gal Viharaya (Stone temple) ruins include magnificent granite sculptures of Lord Buddha among many other sculptures and temples. The Archealogical sites and the museum in Polonnaruwa is a useful deep guide to the rich heritage and history of this Kingdom.
The Dambulla Rock cave temple is an image house of intricate and complex Buddhist images and is almost the epitome of Buddhist image house. The breathtakingly beautiful frescoes adorn its rock ceilings in a myriad of stories of Lord Buddha and Buddhist mythology. The colorful and skillful frescos date back over 2,000years. Dambulla is in one sense astonishing and in another dramatic as one of the most visited Buddhist heritage sites of the ancient world the world over.
Sigiriya the palace in the sky, is perhaps the most striking and mesmerizing dynasties built in 5th century AD by the great Kind Kashyapa. Sigiirya is a rock fortress Palace on top of a gigantic rock. It has been suggested by archaeological enthusiast as the 8th wonder of the world.
The climb and experience of Sigiriya will leave you astonished of the architecture, design, skill and engineering minds of this era and the people of this civilization. The views from the top of the palace amidst its many water pools and ruins of a palacial residence will baffle you. Needless to brag the view from the climb to the top will astound you from a birds eye view of the area, the architecture, the beautiful gardens and ponds placed perfectly the ruins of temples in a distance and the many Tanks built by Kings of the dynasty.
Sigiriya also called “Sinha-giriya” or Lions rock is simply designed after what the name suggests; A rock fortress that is designed after the shape of a gigantic Lion. On the way to the top of the fortress you will encounter the massive Lions paws the Lions mouth and be mesmerized by the frescos of beautiful damsels painted into the side of the rock and the mirror wall which to date reflects the amorous poetry carved on the side mirror walls, by men who were captivated by the beauty of these exquisitely painted damsels. The fortress was King Kashyapas safety harbor from the era of feuding dynasties.
Sigiriya pops up like a gigantic wonder surrounded by thick dense emerald green jungle where there is abundant wildlife.
A short drive away will lead you to game parks of Minneriya and Wasgamuwa. These parks are very popular for larges herds of elephants of 100 strong. What better way to end your cultural triangle expedition than drinking in the beauty of Sri Lankan Wildlife, flora and fauna.
Your wildlife expedition can be arranged by us for a professional and safe Jeep Safari early in the morning or at dusk when it’s the best time one can be guaranteed to spot game.