The ruined cities of srilanka take the visitor back through many centuries during which a unique Civilization flourished. anuradhapura, sigiriya and polonnaruwa, extending from the 3rd century bc To the 12th century ad record a grandeur unsurpassed.
The gentle sway of Buddhism which, transformed the indo-aryan Sinhalese has produced Magnificent feats of architecture and construction. in the massive dagobas, the ornate pleasure Gardens and palaces and the exquisite sculpture which abounds, particularlv at Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa.
The ruvanveliseya ,abhayagiriya , jetawanaramaya , thuparama All at Anuradhapura are dagobas which are still venerated by the Buddhists. well preserved and Restored these grand Buddhist shrines of the past reveal the past glory of a city which in its heyday, Exceeded in size some of the largest cities of the modern world.
The Samadhi statue of the seated, meditating Buddha, the intricately sculpted guardstones And moonstones speak of a standard of sculpture and artistry which is unmatched up to this day.
Polonnaruwa, shows the interesting blend of the influence of south indianhindu culture on the Sinhala Buddhist art and architecture. The shivadevales are interesting transposition of the hindu Style of décor. the gal vihara complex, of the seated, standing and reclining Buddha sculpted in Granite is one of the most evocative pieces of the sculptors art anywhere. The lankatilleke Viharaya shows a unique style of brickwork architecture while the tivanka image house Has some of the best examples of Buddhist frescoes of the 11th century.
The vatadage complex of temples, with the temple of the tooth relic and the nissanka Latamandapayaall show the heights of stone craft and artistry which prevailed in this period Of lanka’s history.
Sigiriya was an interregnum of great excitement. Built by kasyapa who killed his father to gain His wealth, this literal fortress in the sky,is a masterpiece of construction,artistry and irrigation. it was A resort of pleasure, a citadel of beauty and fortress of strength.sigiriya has been made famous Throughout the world for the frescoes on its rock wall. The heavenly maidens, preserved as part Of the world’s artistic heritage. While the frescoes are certainly captivating, there is much more To see and discover at sigiriya, which was later a monastery.
Dambulla or the golden rock is a cave temple which dates back to the 1st century
BC.its rock ceiling is one large sweep of colourful frescoes which depict Buddhist mythology and The tales of the buddha’s previous births. within the cave temple is the collection of the largest Number of Buddha statues in one place.
One of the most important places of worship at Anuradhapura is the srimahaBodhi, the Oldest historically documented tree in the world,dating back to over 2000 years with clear Documentation.