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Updated by Roland Lefevre (Uditha Dharmawardhane) on Sep 24, 2014
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Top 05 Places to Visit in Dambulla – a plethora of experiences

In Sri Lanka excursions are the best means to unearth all the historical wonders that this island is so famously known for. Dambulla for instance has attractions that go centuries back in time and are truly a marvel to explore.

1

The Golden Temple

The Golden Temple

The Golden Temple in Sri Lanka is by far the most significant location in all of Dambulla. This temple has a colossal statue of a seated golden Buddha of a 30 meter height which is considered by Sri Lankans as one of the largest in the world. The Golden Temple is part of the historical rock temple which has paintings that goes centuries back in time. Hundreds of devout Buddhists visit the temple every day placing flowers and offerings by the Golden statue. Visiting the temple gives one a glimpse of the religious cultures eminent among the Buddhists in Sri Lanka.

2

Dambulla Museum

Dambulla Museum

The Museum in Dambulla is perhaps the first spot you will encounter upon entering the city. In here a large collection of age old art can be found that range from cave paintings to 18th century frescoes. Each exhibit is presented with a detailed English language explanation. Some of the tools and materials used in Sri Lanka during the early years are also displayed in this location. It helps to visit the Dambulla Museum prior to the city's main attraction so that one may get an interesting prologue to the attractions that await.

3

Iron Wood Forest and Rose Quartz Mountain

Iron Wood Forest and Rose Quartz Mountain

This forest in Dambulla has a history that goes back to the 10th century since it was declared as a human sanctuary by King Dappula who reigned at that time. The trees found here are believed to have been planted by those who sought sanctuary here. The Rose Quartz mountain range in the garden, which is believed to be over 500 million years old is geologically significant since it has quartz deposits of White, rose and violet color.

4

Bird Watching

Bird Watching

The unspoiled nature of Dambulla has given rise to a thriving bird life that has attracted a world of nature lovers to this city. Most of the bird watching tours in Dambulla are organized in the Rose Quartz Mountain and Iron Wood Forest area.

5

Cave Temples

Cave Temples

Atop the Golden temple is where the famous cave temples lie which makes the most significant part of the Royal Rock Temple complex which sits at a height of about 160m atop the road on the Southern part of Dambulla. The revered cave temples of Dambulla are almost symbolic to the whole island and can be visited from Heritance Hotels in the region. The complex consists of a total of 5 separate caves each with a plethora of Buddhist statues of which there are a 150 in total. Within these caves an absolute stunning collection of paintings can be found some of which are over 2000 years old. It was a sanctuary for Sri Lanka’s ancient Kings these caves; each of whom left a unique mark on the interiors of these 5 fascinating caves. All the 5 caves are open for the public to visit but the most astounding collection of relics are found in Cave number 2 known as the Maraja Viharaya.