Osthrove Ceylon Travels (Pvt)Ltd
Sigiriya

Mount Sigiriya (Sigiriya) is located 170 km northeast of Colombo and 24 km from Dambulla. In Sri Lanka, in the V century. AD Kasapa (477-495), the eldest son of King Datusena (459-477), was to inherit the throne, but the father decided in favor of the youngest son of Mogallan (Kassapa's mother was a concubine). Kassapa burned with hatred for his father and imprisoned him, and in 477 participated in his murder. Moggallana was horrified by the terrible deeds of his elder brother and disappeared in South India. Fearful of revenge, Kassapa decided to build a capital in a remote place. And he chose the rocky mountain Sigiriya, 180 m in height. The King and his architects cleared the place around the cliff and built a magnificent city surrounded by gardens with fountains and pools. They built the most amazing staircases in the world: the stairs are carved between the paws, throat and jaws of the incredible size of a lion. Leo is the emblem of the state and a form of intimidation. At the top of the cliff was built a citadel palace. The citadel begins with the ‘platform of the lion’, from which only paws remained. Steps lead to a terrace measuring 1.7 hectares, where once there was a palace.

According to the description of ancient travelers, the pediment of the palace, built of marble and surrounded by gardens and reservoirs, was paved with precious stones. The giant royal throne is well preserved. Travelers also describe a gallery with frescoes and a ‘mirror wall’, polished with the help of a mineral. Frescos depicting the procession of princesses or palace ladies, as if soaring in the air, and covered with an egg white composition with honey of wild bees, retained their bright colors. Unfortunately, of the 500 frescoes, only 18 have survived. For 18 years of government from the top of the rock Kassapa imagines himself the master of the universe. Confident of his strength, he sent a message to his brother, who returned from India with the army, that he wants to fight with him on the plain. But the decision was made unsuccessfully. In the midst of the battle, Kassapa's elephant moved to the nearest pond to drink water. The army decided that the king was fleeing and began to retreat. Left alone, Kassapa cut his throat. Mogallana destroyed the citadel, destroying the traces of the former master, and taking power into his own hands, restored the capital to Anuradhapura. Subsequently, the ruins of Sigiriya were discovered in the middle of the XIX century by an English hunter. Now this monument of history is under the protection of UNESCO. Thousands of tourists aspire to Sri Lanka to see one of the wonders of the world!