Sigiriya Rock Fortress
Here is a tale worthy of Shakespearean tragedy – a page from Sri Lanka’s history books: 1600 years ago King Dhatusena had a son, Kashyapa – by a woman of low caste – before his marriage to a royal bride. While the King had a younger son by his wife in line to be king, Kashyapa staged a coup and ordered the murder of his father to claim his rightful place as heir to the throne. The younger heir apparent Moggallana, fled to India in fear of his life. Realizing his younger brother could return with an army, Kashyapa moved his base of operations to Sigirya, loosely translated at the Lion’s Rock. The strangely inspired Kashyapa built a citadel in the skies with complex engineering, spectacular frescos that beguile most artists today, tropical gardens and waterways. A giant lion-headed gatehouse and stairway guarded to the entrance to this palace in the clouds.
14 years later and the winds turned on Kashyapa’s new found glory. His allies became him enemies in support of his brother’s return from India. Refusing to heed the warnings of his soothsayer’s Kashyapa came down from Sigirya and rode his elephant mount into battle.
Shortly after, Kashyapa took his own life.
Many other events occurred between Kashyapa’s birth and death – events that enrich this story and blur the lines between good and evil. Tales that bring in visitors from far and wide to visit the magnificence in engineering, architecture, landscaping, culture and art combined.
This is why Sigiriya is sometimes referred to as the 8th Wonder of the World as in one of UNESCO’s high priority World Heritage Sites. Come join in the story of this irreverent, yet spiritual and ingenious ruler of Sri Lanka. This is how we preserve our immortality.