For those travelling from Negombo to Dambulla or Sigiriya or Anuradhapura via Kurunagala or Yapahuwa, Dambadeniya is definitely worth considering a stop on their way to the more famous sites. Actually, Dambadeniya has two major attraction. The former castle rock can be climbed. It’s a nice vantage point comparable to the Yapahuwa rock. And similar to Yapahuwa, it harboured a royal palace built after the Polonnaruwa and prior to the Kandy period. Traces of brick buildings and post holes once carrying wooden pillars of royal pavillons can still be seen on the plateau atop the steep rock. Three natural pools and an ancient stairway are further attractions of Dambadeniya rock. Not far from the monadnock is the temple, which served as the tooth temple of those Sinhalese kings residing in Dambadeniya in the 13th century. However, the wooden architecture that can be seen today, is mostly from the Kandy period. Most interesting are Kandyan paintings in the upper storey of this edifice. The key is available in the monastery’s small museum which is quite charming, too.
Nuwan Chinthaka Gajanayaka