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Explore cultural heritage of Sri Lanka

By Carlton Leisure - 25/11/2014

statue-of-buddha-sri-lanka

Enjoying a beautiful location in Indian Ocean, the island country of Sri Lanka appears to be specially designed for tourist. This South Asian country is home to spectacular beaches, great wildlife, verdant tea estates and an array of drool inducing delicacies. In addition to this, the country is home to timeless ruins which have great appeal among visitors. Most of these sites have been listed in UNESCO’s world heritage list. Here we list some of the major cultural sites of Sri Lanka.

Sacred City of Anuradhapura

This one of the most sacred cities for Buddhist was founded around a cutting from the 'tree of enlightenment', the Buddha's fig tree. The cutting was brought here in the 3rd century B.C. by Sanghamitta. The city has served as political and religious hub for more than 1,300 years. This once flourishing city was deserted after an invasion in 993. This historic city remained hidden amidst thick forests for many years but now it is open for tourists and general public.

Ancient City of Polonnaruwa

Polonnaruwa was made capital of Sri Lanka after the destruction of Anuradhapura in 993 in an invasion. On their arrival the tourists will be able to see the Brahmanic monuments built by the Cholas and the ruins of the fabulous garden-city built by Parakramabahu I in the 12th century.

Golden Temple of Dambulla

Golden Temple of Dambulla has been an important religious site for several centuries. This one of the well preserved cave temples in Sri Lanka attracts several followers from around the world. The temple complex has several Buddhist mural paintings and more than 157 statues.

Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications

The city was founded by the Portuguese in the 16th century. The city reached heights of prosperity during 18th century, before it came under colonial powers. This fortified city shows a marriage of Europeans and South-East Asian architectural styles.

Ancient City of Sigiriya

Ancient City of Sigiriya is also a must watch destination for cultural buffs flying to Sri Lanka. On their arrival, the tourists will be able to see ruins of capital built by the parricidal King Kassapa I during the end of fifth century. The tourists should explore a series of galleries and staircases emerging from the mouth of a huge lion.

Sacred City of Kandy

One of the most sacred sites for Buddhists, Kandy is commonly referred as the city of Senkadagalapura. The city has served as the last capital of the Sinhala kings. The city also holds a specific place in Buddhist religion as it houses the Temple of the Tooth Relic (the sacred tooth of the Buddha).