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Cave temple of Dambulla

The caves in "Dambulla Gala", which tower up to 180 m, were probably used as a monastery as early as the first century BC.

The monastery's significance peaked in the eleventh and seventeenth centuries.

Paintings in a cave

The five caves are ornamented with splendid frescoes and contain numerous statues, most showing Buddha in varying positions.

The rock also offers a beautiful view across the surrounding countryside; to the east you can see Sigiriya Rock.

Small dagoba with Buddha statues

For many years visitors were not permitted to take photos in the caves because a monk had observed a tourist committing the sacrilege of having her photo taken while sitting in the lap of one of the statues of Buddha.

In 2003, this ban was lifted and visitors are now permitted to take photos on the temple grounds and in the caves. The use of flashlights is not permitted in the caves.

City Map of Dambulla

City Map of Dambulla