The island of Sri Lanka is full of ruins and remnants of its prestigious history. Discover the story that the Kings left behind during your Sri Lanka vacations. Let me guide you through the beauty of history that silently rests in a promised land.
The story of the Kingdom of Anuradhapura
A Sri Lanka vacation without a visit to Anuradhapura means you are missing out a lot! Did you know that Anuradhapura was the first kingdom of Sri Lanka? And believe me, the ruins are still ready to be explored. In your Sri Lanka vacation tours pay a visit to Anuradhapura to sightsee some of Sri Lanka’s first stupas and statues.
The religious significance of Mihintale mountain peak
Buddhists believe that it was on this rock, that Buddhism was first introduced to Sri Lanka. King Asoka, emperor of India sent his ordained son, Mahinda Thera to Sri Lanka to spread the peaceful Buddhist doctrine. King Dutugemunu who was a friend of King Asoka encountered Mahinda Thero on this rock, embraced Buddhism, and established this new doctrine as the national religion in Sri Lanka.The cave on the mountain peak is said to have been the residence of Arahant Mahinda and his missionary troop that was sent from India. On your Sri Lanka Vacations , visit this sacred rocky mountain surrounded by a dense forest.
Ruins of Mihintale
At the bottom of Mihintale rock is the remnants of a hospital. Between the steps leading to the peak of the rock and the hospital, you will encounter the famous Kantaka Chetiya. This circular stupa has some fascinating frontispieces called vaahalkada which you must witness in your Sri Lanka vacation tour.
Along with these monuments, there is a refectory, slab inscriptions, a Dagoba, a giant statue of the Buddha, and ponds named Kaludiya Pokuna (Black pond) and Naga Pokuna (Serpent pond) which makes Mihintale a historical destination that you are ought to explore in your Sri Lanka vacation tour.
- Ritigala forest monastery
- Sandakadapahana – One of the finest and well-preserved moonstones in Sri Lanka
- Lovamahapaya brazen palace
- Isurumuniya temple
- Ranmasu Garden
Walk into the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa
If you thought that Sigiriya is the only World Heritage that you would witness during your Sri Lanka vacation, you are wrong. The ancient city of Polonnaruwa is another UNESCO World Heritage in Sri Lanka which is absolutely worthy of your Sri Lanka Vacation Tours
Being the second Kingdom of this island, it is also one of the untouched ancient cities where urbanization is given a separate part of the Polonnaruwa district. On your next Sri Lanka vacation, get ready to time travel back to the era of brick and stone!
Vatadage (Stupa house)
Although there are many stupa houses around the world, the Polonnaruwa Vatadage is known as the best to date for many reasons: the stupa in the middle, one of the famous moonstones and the two damsels carved on the guard stones at the entrance, the state-of-the-art carvings on the moonstones and guard stones, 4 Buddha statues and the alluring pillars around the stupa to protect it.
In your Sri Lanka vacations, wandering around places like these in Polonnaruwa will be like entering into a different dimension of paradise Sri Lanka.
The royal palace of King Parakramabahu
Another interesting site for your Sri Lanka vacation is the royal palace. Believed to have had 7 stories and around 1000 chambers, this palace is an indication of how grand the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa must have been.
Although destroyed by Cholas during their invasions, the ruins of this glorious palace reveal the true craftsmanship of the artists of Sri Lanka.
As the entrance pillars on the ground level are still visible, through this Sri Lanka vacation tour you will be astonished to explore the essence of the monumental art, culture, and engineering of ancient Sri Lanka.
Other top attractions of Polonnaruwa
- The kings’ audience hall
- The king’s swimming pool
- Gal Vihara (Rock temple)
- Thivanka image house
- Shiva Devale
- Buddha statue at Lankathilaka
Sigiriya; the must-visit for your Sri Lanka vacation tours
The well-known UNESCO World Heritage situated near the city of Dambulla is a must-visit for your Sri Lanka vacations. It’s a shame for locals to admit it if they have never visited this masterpiece.
Sigiriya Rock Fortress
The city of Sigiriya cries out a conspicuous history dating back to the 5th century. This rock fortress is going to be one of the sensational historical sites you will visit in your Sri Lanka Vacation Tours
Sigiriya (The lion’s paw) is a humungous rock in the middle of a dense forest in the center of Sri Lanka. King Kasyapa built a fortress in this high rock to prevent invasions from his step-brother Prince Moggallana, who was resentful towards him for stealing his rightful thrown.
The journey of exploring Sigiriya in your Sri Lanka vacations begins from a stroll through the city that King Kasyapa constructed. You will walk through the King’s pleasure gardens until you meet the famous giant paws carved in stone which is the entrance to the fortress. The rest of the stone lion was destroyed by the invasion of Prince Moggallana and what remains is the lion’s paws.
In this Sri Lanka vacation tour, the sight of the beautiful Sri Lankan damsels painted on the walls, the mirror wall, and the breathtaking views when you climb to the top of the rock would hang your jaw open. This would be an unforgettable part of your Sri Lanka Vacations as you wander through a land full of history!
Other top attractions near Sigiriya
- Dambulla cave temple complex – The largest and the best-preserved cave temple complex in Sri Lanka. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage.
- Pidurangala rock
- Pethikada ancient art gallery
- Ibbankatuwa megalithic tombs
- Dambulla Buddhist museum
This amazing journey of your Sri Lanka vacations will feel like walking in and out through the doors of history. Whether you are visiting with your family and friends or even alone, reserve a Sri Lanka itinerary of 2 weeks and spend an incredible few days exploring the mysteries left behind these prestigious ruins of a rich culture. Make your Sri Lanka Vacations histobulous!