Foot Print Holidays
Polonnaruwa was the medieval capital of Sri Lanka and the second capital of the Island in the 11th and 12th centuries AD. In AD 993, the “Cholas” looted and burnt Anuradhapura and used Polonnaruwa as their military base for 77 years, resulting in an interesting blend of South Indian Hindu Culture and Sinhalese Buddhist art and architecture.

Taking inspiration from their Hindu conquerors, the resurgent Sinhalese kings moved to this city, triggering an amazing artistic renaissance.

The "Galvihara" rock sculptures which consist of three splendid statues of Lord Buddha in the upright, recumbent and sedentary posture carved out of a cliff face of granite, by unknown artists, can be awarded for the artistic quality of the best. Out of the three, the largest figure, a 14 meter reclining Buddha is of such beauty that it inspired hundreds of years of Sinhalese art, but was never matched. Here the variations in the colour of the rock appear as a veil of ripples washing over the figure of the Buddha as he slips to Nirvana…………….

Also in Polonnaruwa see the remains of the 7-storied palace, the Vatadage, Kirivehera, Lankathilaka Temple, Galpotha and many other ruins of interest.

“Not even a drop of water from the rain must flow into the ocean without being made useful to man”, declared the Grand Monarch Parakramabahu when he constructed the “Parakrama Samudra” - Sea of Parakrama…………tank which covers an area of 2,430 hectares ( 6000 acres ). This monumental feat of engineering had 11 channels leading water off in different directions to fed a network of irrigation canals and minor tanks.

Around 1923, Polonnaruwa returned to the jungles after the capital city migrated southwards.
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