Dambulla cave temple, Sri Lanka

Left the hotel for Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya on the Sunday morning. It’s commonly known as the Golden Temple, Rock Temple or Cave Temple of Dambulla.

Photos on the way

Photos on the way

Dambulla is a big town, situated in the Central Province of Sri Lanka. It has a population of 68,821 inhabitants in the 2012.

Photographs around the Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya

Photographs around the Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya

Dambulla Cave Temple, also known as the Golden Temple of Dambulla, is a World Heritage Site, situated in the central part of the country.

Got the ticket and going into the Golden Temple.

Got the ticket and going into the Golden Temple.

This is the Golden Temple.

This is the monastery of Golden Temple complex Dambulla.

The Golden Buddha statue, Dambulla golden temple, just downhill from the Cave temple.

Local believers visited the temple for prayer on the Sunday morning. The traditional clothes of the old women are lovely.

Local believers visited the temple for prayer on the Sunday morning. The traditional clothes of the old women are lovely.

The Sunday school has been held for the children. In this country, children must learn Buddhism.

The Sunday school has been held for the children. In this country, children must learn Buddhism.

That day, the Sunday school has been held for the children. In this country, children must learn Buddhism.

The Sunday school at the Golden Temple, Dambulla.

The Golden Temple and the line of the Buddhist priests’ images. Don’t you have an eerie feeling?

The Golden Temple and the line of the Buddhist priests’ images. Don’t you have an eerie feeling?

The starting point to the Cave Temple of Dambulla.

The starting point to the Cave Temple of Dambulla.

Climbed to the Sigiriya Rock yesterday, I was really tired and do not want to climb the stairs today.

Climbed to the Sigiriya Rock yesterday, I was really tired and do not want to climb the stairs today.

Walking up to the Rock Temple of Dambulla

Walking up to the Rock Temple of Dambulla

 Arrived at the gate of the Cave Temple

Arrived at the gate of the Cave Temple

The rock towers 160 m over the surrounding plains. I was tired to climb the hill.

Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya

Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya

This temple complex dates back to the first century BCE. It has five caves under a vast overhanging rock.

Plan of Caves Dambulla (from Sri Lankan Explorer)

Plan of Caves Dambulla (from Sri Lankan Explorer)

The first Cave temple is called as Devarajalena Vihara, the Lord of the Gods Temple.   

Entrance of the Cave Temple

Entrance of the Cave Temple, first room Devaraja (King of the Gods).

The reclined Buddha statue of Devaraja cave temple

The reclined Buddha statue of Devaraja cave temple

The large 45 feet Sleeping postured Buddha statue is said to be the Parinirvana status or the final passing away of the Lord Buddha.

The seated Buddha statue and the Venerable Ananda Thera image of Devaraja cave temple

The seated Buddha statue and the Venerable Ananda Thera image of Devaraja cave temple

Cloister of the Cave temple

Cloister of the Cave temple

The second cave Maharaja (the Great Kings), the largest temple.

Next door, pious locals pray in the temple all day long.

Next door, pious locals pray in the temple all day long.

Inside view at Maharaja (Great King) Cave Temple, Dambulla.

Inside view at Maharaja (Great King) Cave Temple, Dambulla.

Standing Lord Buddha image with flanking attendants

Standing Lord Buddha image with flanking attendants

Reclined Lord Buddha image at Maharajalena Cave Temple

Reclined Lord Buddha image at Maharajalena Cave Temple

A lot of Buddha statue in the Maharaja cave.

A lot of Buddha statue in the Maharaja cave.

Maharajas (great kings) of this cave, King Vattagamani Abhaya and King Nissanka Malla

Maharajas (great kings) of this cave, King Vattagamani Abhaya and King Nissanka Malla

Small pond on the outside of the corridor. Purple water lily is the national flower of Sri Lanka.

Small pond on the outside of the corridor. Purple water lily is the national flower of Sri Lanka.

The third cave, the Maha Alut Vihara (Great New Monastery) acquired wall paintings in the typical Kandy style. It was built in the reign of King Kirti Sri Rajasinha (1747–1782).

Next door of Maha Alut Vihara (Great New Temple)

Next door, Maha Alut Vihara (Great New Temple)

Inside view at Maha Alut Vihara

Inside view at Maha Alut Vihara

The nine meters long colossal reclined Buddha image at The Maha Alut Viharaya

The nine meters long colossal reclined Buddha image at The Maha Alut Viharaya

Seating Buddha statue and the king of Kandy at the Maha Alut Viharaya.

Seating Buddha statue and the king of Kandy at the Maha Alut Viharaya.

The seated Buddha image under the dragon arch and the King of Kandy who built this temple cave, Kirti Sri Rajasingha in the Royal costumes.

Rock wall paintings, at The Maha Alut Viharaya

Rock wall paintings, at The Maha Alut Viharaya

Outside view of the thired Cave, Maha Alut Vihara.

Outside view of the thired Cave, Maha Alut Vihara.

Next fourth Cave, the Pachchima Viharaya (Western Temple) Dambulla. (Cave 5, constructed later, is actually further west.)

The door of the Pachchima Viharaya

The door of the Pachchima Viharaya

The fourth cave is relatively small. The figures of seated Buddhas in the meditation posture sit around the walls. A small dagoba stands in the middle; the crack in the side is the work of thieves who broke in, believing the dagoba to contain the jewellery of Vattagamini Abhaya’s wife, Queen Somawathie.

Inside view of fourth cave of the Pachchima Viharaya Dambulla

Inside view of fourth cave of the Pachchima Viharaya Dambulla

Seating and standing Buddha images of the Pachchima Viharaya.

Seating and standing Buddha images of the Pachchima Viharaya.

Murals of rock ceiling at the Pachchima Viharaya Dambulla.

Murals of rock ceiling at the Pachchima Viharaya Dambulla.

The final cave Devan Alut Vihara (New Temple), Pachchima Vihara Dambulla.

The stairs up to the fifth room.

The stairs up to the fifth room.

Devan Alut Vihara is the most modern of the temples and  the images here are made of brick and plaster.

The Buddha images of Devan Alut Vihara (the new temple)

The Buddha images of Devan Alut Vihara (the new temple)

The Reclining Buddha Image.

The Reclining Buddha Image.

The main figure is a 10m reclining Buddha. Since the room is narrow, it is impossible to take the whole body.

Buddha images

Buddha images

Wall paintings of The Maha Alut Viharaya is done on a plaster face.

Wall paintings of The Maha Alut Viharaya is done on a plaster face.

The Arhats, Buddhist saints who have attained enlightenment, are offering flowers to the Lord Buddha (left). The Arhats are venerating the Lord Buddha by Namaskara posture by arms (right).

Exit the caves to the precincts

Exit the caves to the precincts

The sacred tree, Bo

The sacred tree, Bo

Gate of Cave Temple, after this I headed to the next destination Matale.

Gate of Cave Temple, after this I headed to the next destination Matale.

Distant view of Sigiriya Rock, from Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya.

Distant view of Sigiriya Rock, from Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya.

Flora of Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya

Flora of Dambulla Rajamaha Viharaya

 

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