Dambulla caves
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Guide To Explore Dambulla Caves Today

Are you thinking of visiting Sri Lanka? It is a tropical paradise. Moreover, there is sand, caves, animals, and temples as attractions. The Dambulla Caves is one of the biggest tourist attractions.

Many tourists visit these caves, which are situated atop a 160-meter-high rock. You will find the five caves cut out from a prehistoric rock face.

Researchers have found many skeletons in the caves. It points towards prehistoric existence as well.

It is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

You will find more than eighty documented caves in and around the area.

Moreover, there are many burial sites inside the caves.

Ancient Sri Lankas might have lived there before the Buddhists arrived.

The Dambulla Caves Decoded

The pilgrimage site dates back to the first century B.C. Each cave has a different interior. Located on the Kandy-Jaffna highway, you cannot afford to miss the place.

You can see many Buddhist statues, the statues of his disciple Ananda, and other Hindu deities as well.

The largest one is called Maharaja Vihara Lena. It means the cave of the great kings.

If you happen to venture inside the largest cave, you will find life-size statues of the great kings, Valagambahu and Nissankamalla.

Apart from them, there are numerous Buddha statues and a small stupa as well. Eleven Buddha statues surround the stupa. The Cave of the Divine King and the Great New Monasteries are part of the complex.

There are two other attached caves as well.

They form the fourth and fifth cave.

The experience is surely ethereal.

The Dambulla caves temples are surely an enigma.

Apart from the big one, there are other caves as well. You will find them painted with historical scenes.

Moreover, they are brightly painted but with dim lights.

The murals and paintings are prominent.

A distinguishing feature is the large bowl installed centuries ago.

It was placed to catch dripping rainwater.

During drought, it never dries. Dambulla is a spectacular sight.

Dambulla CavesThings You Need To Know About Dambulla Caves

  • If you happen to go this way, plan other sightseeing activities as well. You will have ample spare time after visiting the Dambulla caves temples. You can also visit the Sigiriya Rock, Pidurangala Rock, and visit Kaudulla National Park. It is famous for elephants.
  • You might hear other names for the complex. Furthermore, the complex is called Dambulla Rock Temple or Golden Temple. The Golden Temple is at the bottom of the hill.
  • The best time to visit is in the morning or in the breezy evening time. You can enjoy the stunning sunsets from the cliff.
  • You have to wear modest clothing when you enter the Temple Complex. You need to cover your shoulders and cannot wear shorts. Borrow a wrap from the entrance if you have nothing modest.
  • It is a climb uphill. If you are fit and fine, you can make it in 10 minutes.

Dambulla CavesFAQ

How long does it take to see Dambulla Caves?

You can finish the temple tour in 1-2 hours. It takes a lot less time to visit the complex. The caves are mere over-hangings. You can run up and down quite fast if you are fit. Sit and relax atop the hillock. Spend some time with the monkeys.

How many steps are in the Dambulla cave?

You have to climb 364 steps to reach the Cave complex.

Is Dambulla worth visiting?

Yes, Dambulla Caves is worth visiting. It is a UNESCO World Heritage structure. The caves temple is dedicated to Lord Buddha and ranks high on most pilgrim’s list.

If you love history and culture, then this is the place to be. Dambulla caves temple offers innumerable murals and Buddha statues for you to admire.

How do you get to the cave in the Dambulla Temple?

Dambulla caves temples are located about 160 km from Colombo and 73 km from Kandy. You will get buses from Kandy Central Bus Station.

There are buses every half an hour. If you avail yourself of express buses, you can reach within 2 hours. You can also take a taxi.

If you are in Colombo, take the train. You can reach fast.


The archaeological authorities have taken great pains to preserve this natural heritage. It is an active ritual center even today. If you are visiting Sri Lanka, visit the caves. Your trip will be incomplete without it.

This pilgrimage site for twenty-to centuries deserves a standing ovation. Explore the place if you love history, cultures, and murals.

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