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Updated by Joanna James on Mar 29, 2021
Headline for Exciting things to do in Dambulla – Off the beaten track in Sri Lanka
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Joanna James Joanna James
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Exciting things to do in Dambulla – Off the beaten track in Sri Lanka

Dambulla is not by any means one of the more prominent places in Sri Lanka, but it is a must-visit if you're visiting the country. It is an ancient kingdom surrounded by dry-zone forests and archaeological wonders. It is home to some of the best resorts in the country as well.

1

Climb Rose Quartz Mountain

There is no shortage of things to do in Sigiriya and the nearby areas. If you're planning to visit this historic city check out Heritance Kandalama, it's one of the best resorts the country has to offer. Dambulla is home to the largest rose quartz mountain in Asia and also Sri Lanka's largest ironwood forest. This magnificent mountain of light pink quartz is easily scalable and takes a hike of about 30 minutes to reach its peak. It is located in a small but beautiful nature reserve which is most famously home to thousands of butterflies.

2

Dambulla Cave Temples

This historic site is located nearly 160m above the ground and consists of 5 caves that house dozens of Buddha statues and paintings. The site is said to date back to the 1st century BC according to Sri Lankan historical texts and ancient Buddhist scriptures. It is a breathtaking place that is worth the hike to reach. Apart from the interior of the caves the views of the surrounding areas once you reach them are worth the trip by itself.

3

Climb Sigiriya

Often cited as the 8th wonder of the world, you'll easily see why when you visit this amazing place. Sigirya is a giant rock that stands alone on a flat forest plain. It rises hundreds of meters into the sky and on top of it, you can find the remains of an ancient palace which history claims were built by a renegade king in exile and myth suggests belong to an era forgotten by history. Sigiriya was rediscovered by a British explorer in the 19th century and to this day baffles experts as to how it was built and the engineering that went it to creating its ponds and water system. The rock has frescos that are renowned by art experts the world over and at the summit, you can see for hundreds of miles in any direction.

4

Elephant Safari

Dambulla is surrounded by quite a few amazing national parks among which Minneriya is probably the most famous. It is home to a large population of wild elephants and you have to go on a safari to see these majestic creatures up close in their natural habitat. Apart from the elephants, you can see many other wild animals such as leopards, sloth bears, buffalos, and deer. The national park is quite beautiful on its own, to be honest.

5

Watch a cricket match

Sri Lankans are very passionate about their cricket and Dambulla is home to an international stadium, so if you visit Dambulla be sure to watch a match if one is happening. The atmosphere is electric and the noise and euphoria ecstatic. You don't need to be a fan of the sport to enjoy a match in Sri Lanka, the crowds make it fun.

  • A true believer that the pen is a mighty weapon, ventures into reaching the minds of every reader with the earnest hope of leaving an indelible stream of thought.

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