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Complete guide to Sri Lanka’s Culture & Heritage

Complete guide to Sri Lanka's Culture & Heritage

Sri Lanka has a colourful history that goes beyond 2000 years! Some of the ancient cities still hold the splendour of these historical monuments and buildings, and most have earned the title of world heritage sites. Bright white temples, beautiful palaces, beautifully carved ponds built for ancient royalty, statues of Lord Buddha and various other cleverly constructed monuments that cannot be explored in just one day!

Gigantic temples, ruins of structures in ancient cities, spectacular cave temples and more. Wall paintings of beautiful maidens at the Sigiriya rock fortress, the ever famous Cultural Triangle is a place where travellers can marvel upon the World Heritage Sites within a small area.

The Dalanda Maligawa or known as the Sacred Temple of the Tooth, lies in the majestic capital of yesteryear, Kandy. This sacred place is home to the sacred tooth relic of the Buddha and boasts unique architecture and craftsmanship. So, if you are looking for the epitome of traditional culture, Kandy is the place to be.

In the city of Galle, on the other hand, you will be able to witness the colonial heritage of Sri Lanka. The infamous Dutch fort at Galle is one of the well-conserved in Asia. With Cobblestone streets and beautiful bungalows built initially by the Dutch, the Galle fort teems with life and is one of the premium tourist magnets in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka has a plethora of cultural heritages. UNESCO has well lionised the profundity of Sri Lanka’s culture, has earned its way in six World Heritage Sites in the country:

  • The meritorious city of Anuradhapura
  • The ancient city of Polonnaruwa
  • The golden temple of Dambulla
  • The ancient city of Sigiriya
  • The sacred tooth relic in the city of Kandy
  • The old town of Galle and its fortifications

In Sri Lanka, Buddhism has a vast influence over the cultural heritage. South India, has also contributed towards the Sri Lankan history and culture. When the Dutch, the Portuguese and the British colonised the island, even they gave some of their own cultural traits and concocted a vast mix of unique art, architecture, food and much more. The historical art, nan architecture possesses the traditional Buddhist Crest. With several temples, dagobas (dome-shaped buildings), and enormous Buddha statues in various parts of the island.

The ancient cities of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa proudly display the archaeological legacy of Sri Lanka. The former royal empire, Kandy, is known as the cultural hub of the country. A major port of arrival, at a bygone era, the city of Galle, houses some of the most prominent and fascinating colonial monuments of Sri Lanka. The excellent craftsmanship is portrayed in the spectacular wood carving, weaving, pottery and metalwork. Sri Lankan ves muhunu (masks) are hand made in the city of Ambalangoda, and these make for the perfect souvenir. Ratnapura is a town made famous by the exquisite gems.

Esala Perehara

The world-famous extravaganza, the Esala Perehara, is a delightful, vibrant procession of beautifully decorated elephants, traditional Sri Lankan dancers and lights take place each year in August. It is held in the cultural hub in Kandy and celebrations go on for two weeks. The Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha is carried in a sacred casket around the city in a parade during this ritual, and for this task, only a specially trained tusker is bestowed with the role of carrying the Tooth Relic.

To experience the culture and heritage in Sri Lanka is a beautiful thing. If you are interested in taking a deep dive into the spectacular sites, we at Travel Center UK are more than happy to assist you, we have the best deals, from escorted tours to cheap flights. So, call or email us and book now, don’t wait too long!


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