Hill climbing in Sri Lanka

We decided to hire a driver to visit the sites of Dambulla and Sigrinya, as they were just far enough away that taking buses would have made for a stressful day.  Our first stop was Dambulla, where we climbed a hill and saw the famous cave temples.  There are five different temples perched on the top of the hill, with statues of Buddha and beautiful cave paintings inside them.  We spent time exploring these and watching some of the people worshipping and bringing flower offerings.

 

 

Julie and Karen at Dambulla
Julie and Karen at Dambulla

 

View as we walked up the hill
View as we walked up the hill

 

Statues in the temples
Statues in the temples

 

Inside a cave temple
Inside a cave temple

 

After a lunch break we headed to Sigriya, also known as the Lion Rock. The top of this rock was the site of King Kasyapa’s city in 480AD. Mum checked out the museum while Reuben and I headed up the rock.  A short stroll through the water gardens brought us to the foot of the rock, where we took a steep staircase up the side of the rock.  About a third of the way up, we took a side route up a steep spiral staircase attached to the side of the rock, which led to the famous cave frescoes depicting women (possibly mythical beings).  We had seen copies of these in the museum in Colombo, so it was really interesting to see the real thing.

 

Reubs at Sigriya
Reubs at Sigriya

 

The mighty Rock
The mighty Rock

 

Steep steps
Steep steps

 

Cave paintings on the way
Cave paintings on the way

 

Going back down the staircase we continued around the side of the rock and up to a large plateau where two lion’s paws remain (pictured above) – the only remnants of the former entrance.  We climbed right up to the top from here and explored the layout of the former palace as well as the stunning views.  The climb was steep but not actually as bad as I had thought it would be – the whole walk there and back took under two hours in the early afternoon heat and we definitely took our time taking photos and exploring.  We really enjoyed our trip but though both were quite steep – at $15 NZD each for Dambulla and $36 NZD each for Sigiriya they seemed very expensive compared to other World Heritage sites we have visited. (Sometime in the future I will write about the different sites we have visited and the price for each for entry!)

 

Reubs and the lions paws
Reubs and the lions paws

 

View from the top
View from the top

 

Good advice!
Good advice!

 

After the descent
After the descent

 

 

 

One Comment Add yours

  1. Mum Bunn says:

    That was such a good day! I put Dambulla in my “Three Favourites” list for Sri Lanka. Thanks again for your support and encouragement to make it to the top, and back down again. Karen makes a wonderful mobile handrail!!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s