Thursday, July 7, 2011

Sri Lanka - Dambulla Cave Temples

Having spent a couple of hours climbing up and down Sigiriya Rock we thought we should climb some more steps.  It was a major change for us - living in Vientiane the entire city is flat and as the buildings are mainly low-rise we have not climbed many stairs or hills lately.

I wasn't expecting much when we drove into the parking area at the Dambulla Cave Temple and saw this Buddha - luckily this was a museum and we skirted around it heading for the hills
Unesco has done some work to help restore and light the temples, built into caves high up on the hill

According to the guide there are 153 Buddha statues, 3 statues of Sri Lankan kings and 4 statues of god and goddess. The murals painted on the rock face cover an area of 2,100 m².

The caves were serene and full of the smell of tropical flowers brought as offerings

Most locals were dressed in formal clothing or school uniforms, this sunny Saturday afternoon.  On the way up we saw monkeys 'attacking' children to steal the flowers they carried and then eating the centres of the flowers.  The kids took it in their stride, didn't make a fuss, didn't scream or cry.  And these weren't the cute storybook variety of monkey - they meant business

After an overload of step climbing and descending we returned the van to drive to the tea plantation where we were spending three nights.

1 comment:

  1. We also went and thought the caves were amazing...! What memories! Can't remember any scary monkeys though ;-)