The Kingdom of Dambadeniya
The Kingdom of Dambadeniya was a medieval kingdom in what is present day Sri Lanka. The kingdom’s rulers reigned from 1220–1345.
The first king to choose Dambadeniya as his capital was Vijayabahu III. He was able to bring about the unity among the Sangha that had fled in various directions due to the hostile activities of the invader Kalinga Magha and succeeded in holding a Buddhist convention in 1226 to bring about peace among the Buddhist clergy.
King Parakramabahu II was the king who inherited the throne after King Vijayabahu. He was considered a genius, who was a great poet and a prolific writer. Among the books he wrote are Kausilumina, which is considered a great piece of literature. Unifying the three kingdoms that existed within Sri Lanka at that point of time is regarded as greatest achievement.
King Bosath Vijayabahu, as the eldest son of King Parakramabahu the second was crowned in 1270. He was well known for his modest behaviour and for his religious activities. He was killed in the second year of his reign by a minister called Miththa.
After the demise of his elder brother Vijayabahu, Bhuvanekabahu I, as the next in line to the throne, shifted the capital to Yapahuwa for reasons of security. He followed his father’s footsteps as a writer and continued with the religious activities started by his brother Vijayabahu IV.
Yapahuwa Rock Fortress
Yapahuwa was one of the ephemeral capitals of medieval Sri Lanka. The citadel of Yapahuwa lying midway between Kurunagala and Anuradhapura was built around a huge granite rock rising abruptly almost a hundred meters above the surrounding lowlands.
In 1272, King Bhuvenakabahu transferred the capital from Polonnaruwa to Yapahuwa in the face of Dravidian invasions from South India, bringing the Sacred Tooth Relic with him. Following the death of King Bhuvenakabahu in 1284, the Pandyans of South India invaded Sri Lanka once again, and succeeded in capturing Sacred Tooth Relic. Following its capture, Yapahuwa was largely abandoned and inhabited by Buddhist monks and religious ascetics.
Yapahuwa served as the capital of Sri Lanka in the latter part of the 13th century (1273–1284). Built on a huge, 90 meter high rock boulder in the style of the Sigiriya rock fortress, Yapahuwa was a palace and military stronghold against foreign invaders.
The palace and fortress were built by King Buvanekabahu I (1272–1284) in the year 1273. Many traces of ancient battle defences can still be seen, while an ornamental stairway, is its biggest showpiece. On top of the rock are the remains of a stupa, a Bodhi tree enclosure, and a rock shelter/cave used by Buddhist monks, indicating that earlier this site was used as a Buddhist monastery, like many boulders and hills in the area. There are several caves at the base of the rock. In one of them there is a shrine with Buddha images. One cave has a Brahmi script inscription. At the southern base of the rock there is a fortification with two moats and ramparts. In this enclosure there are the remains of a number of buildings including a Buddhist shrine. There is also a Buddhist temple called Yapahuwa Rajamaha Vihara built during the Kandyan period.
The Tooth Relic was brought from Dambadeniya and kept in the Tooth Temple built for the purpose at the top of the third staircase. The relics were carried away from the temple here to South India by the Pandyas, and then recovered in 1288 by Parakkramabahu III (1287–1293), who temporarily placed them in safety at Polonnaruwa.
From Negombo – 06:00hrs
From Colombo – 06:00hrs
(1) From Negombo
(2) From Colombo
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* Pick up from your place (From Negombo or Colombo)
* 1st Sightseeing at Kingdom of Dambadeniya
* Lunch on the way to Yapahuwa Kingdom
* Sightseeing at Yapahuwa Rock Fortress
* Return back to your place about 18:00hrs
Hello LankaExplorer Holidays
My friend recommended me your travel company. and I am so happy about my tour. I was really enjoyed yapahuwa and Sri Lankan food . Also I would like to recommend to other people your organization
Hello Sampath ,
can’t believe where we were few hrs , it was wonderful place and I love those architectural in Yapahuwa. This is our 2nd visit in Sri Lanka and we missed it last time . Thank you for wonderful trip. I would like to recommend LankaExplorer Holidays as professional team work . Good Luck Sampath
Maya , 2018