Sigiriya Lion Rock Fortress
$30 - Foreigners
(Rs50 - locals)
7:00 AM – 5:30 PM
(Last entry 5:00 PM)
3-4 hours for site tour
60-90 Minutes to the top
(Juice Bar is Excellent)
Main Entrance & Exit only
(No toilets on site)
Sigiriya rock fortress was built by King Kasyapa 1,600 years ago. It burst briefly into pre-eminence with breathtaking expressions of architecture and art and then in a mere 18 years it faded into oblivion and was soon forgotten.
Sigiriya was the largest and most sophisticated single construction project ever undertaken by the ancient Sri Lankans. The ruins of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress seen today are less than twenty percent of the structures that once graced the area. Most buildings were made of wood. Consequently, there is very little evidence of these structures. Those built with stone and brick have survived the ravages of time and provide us a rare glimpse of the opulence and grandeur of an ancient era. Many ruins still lay hidden in the forest and are yet to be discovered.
It is difficult for a modern tourist to comprehend the absolute splendor of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress 1600 years ago. Few ancient cities surpassed it for its ecologically-sensitive, grand vision and aesthetic elegance. It is one of the best preserved examples of ancient urban planning in the world.
Imagine this was a magical place; an earthly paradise of lush gardens, ponds, fountains, and brightly colored pavilions. Its centerpiece was a huge rock which appears as though it were a large cloud tethered to earth festooned with a spectacular work of art, the Sigiriya Frescoes, which harked up to a Sky Palace on top of a 200 meter tall rock.
No holiday to Sri Lanka would be complete without a visit to Sigiriya - Kasyapa's masterpiece.
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