Sri Lanka is well known for its cultural heritage. The most popular region among tourists is the cultural triangle. Within two days you can visit the most popular cultural sites in Sri Lanka. Having a long written history that dates back to the 3rd Century BC has been instrumental in developing the Tourism industry in SriLanka
Sri Lanka has eight UNESCO World heritage sites. Having this many sites, in a small country is great. The most visited ancient city is Polonnaruwa, The Rock fortress of Sigiriya is claimed to be the 8th Wander of the World. Anuradhapura is the most impressive ancient city with massive relic Temples. Dambulla is the largest painted cave temple in the World. Kandy was the last indigenous Capital of the Country and it still remains the cultural hub.
The sacred city of Anuradhapura
Anuradhapura the longest-lived Capital in the World from the 5th Century BC till the 10th Century AD is known for its impressive relic temples. The tallest temple at Anuradhapura was the third tallest monument in the World at that time.The sacred Bodhi tree is the oldest tree in the World with a recorded history that dates back to the 3rd Century BC.Ruwanweliseya is the best-preserved relic temple in the country with a white Cristal on the top of the pinnacle that reflects the sunlight onto the devotees. The Samadhi Buddha statue, The twin ponds, Brazen Palace & Isurumuniya are the other highlights in Anurathepura
The ancient city of Polonnaruwa
The medieval Capital of SriLanka was flourishing from the 10th to the 12th Century AD. The monuments here are in better shape and well preserved as they are younger than the ruins in Anuradhapura. Most of the monuments are close to each other which makes it easier to explore. The ancient city is close to the largest ancient man-made reservoir called Parakrama Samudraya. The highlight of Polonnaruwa is the Rock temple or Gal Viharaya. There are four statues of Buddha carved out of a single piece of granite rock.
The golden temple of Dambulla
The Golden Rock temple was built in the 1st Century BC by a King who was driven away by the South Indians from the ancient Capital. The King lived in these caves for nearly two decades. He converted all five caves into temples. The paintings on the walls and the sealing are amazing. Natural colors have been used to paint the caves
The ancient city of Sigiriya
The Rock fortress of Sigiriya was the Capital of Srilanka in the 5th Century BC for nearly two decades. The 600 feet rock was converted into a fortress with moats with Crocodiles & sinking mud, Stone catapults, and many other obstructers.
The views from the top are breathtaking and you get to see the outer rim of the once active volcano. Sigiriya was the inner core of the volcano. This is easily the most visited ancient monument in Srilanka and is a highlight for most people.
The sacred city of Kandy
The most visited city by Tourists is the cultural center of Sri Lanka. The lake in the heart of the city makes Kandy unique. The highlight of Kandy is the Temple of the tooth where the Tooth Relic of Buddha is housed. This is a very active temple with hundreds of pilgrims visiting it daily. The best time to visit the temple is during the ceremony. Another highlight in Kandy is the Royal Botanical Garden which is in an area of 67 hectares.
The Dutch fort in Galle
The Dutch are one of the few living World heritage sites. The fort was first built by the Portuguese. But later on, the Dutch re-furbished and expanded it.
You can walk all the way around the fort seeing the highlights such as the Dutch church, National Museum, Dutch Hospital complex, lighthouse, flag rock, and the clock tower
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