Monday, October 17, 2016

Pidurangala Rock: Sigriya Twist with Off Beat Adventure

If you are on the historical trail of North-Central Sri Lanka, I am pretty sure that you will have Sigriya, the multi-million year old rock, in your itinerary. Sigriya, with its gorgeous ancient city, the prehistoric frescoes and amazing water gardens demands that extra attention. After all, it is one of Sri Lanka’s top highlights and definitely one of its most visited historical sites.

A Sigriya sunset view as seen from the top of Pidirangala Rock, Srilanka

But, if you wish to experience Sigriya with a slight twist and have some off-beat adventure thrown in as a bonus, I would recommend that you climb Pidurangala Rock, a massive rock located a few kilometres north of Sigriya. Pidurangala offers an interesting mix of a rugged climb, a Buddhist temple, ruins of Buddha statues, stunning sunrises and sunsets and a view of Sigriya worth dying for.

Admiring Sigriya from Pidurangala Rock, Srilanka

All you need to do is take a tuk tuk from your hotel or from Sigriya, reach the base of the temple and begin the steep climb from here. As the climb is quite steep and rugged, it is advised to wear a good pair of walking shoes and carry some water and biscuits/energy bars for hydration and nutrition. The climb in total is about 30 minutes and you will see nothing except a dense tree cover for about 20 minutes. Do not worry and keep climbing the steps and following the arrows made on the rocks. When you feel a strong gust of wind hitting you on your chest, you are pretty close to the top.

Pidurangala - offers the best views of Sigriya

The top is flat and rocky with a boulder or two and some shrubs. You more or less get a 360 degree view from the top of Pidurangala rock. You see Sigriya straight ahead, the hills in the background and the lakes and the forest cover in the foreground below. Personally, I feel the wind, the view and the entire landscape make it a perfect place to have breakfast or that late evening snack.

Trekking to the top of Sigriya to discover this view of the Sigriya Rock

Go here for sunrise or sunset and watch the golden rays of the sun dance on Sigriya and its surrounding green landscape. It is always recommended to carry a camera as sunrise and sunsets here are usually dramatic. As it is pretty windy on top of the rock, drones are rendered useless. If you wish to catch the first rays of the sunrise or the last rays of sunset, you will pretty much ascend or descend in darkness. A flashlight or headlamp will surely come in handy at such times.  Let me know how your Sigriya Twist Adventure goes from the top of Pidurangala rock.

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