• Entrance


You are about to enter the remains of the Sigiriya rock fortress, built by king Kasyapa in 473 CE. His story, is one of cruelty and intrigue, vision and grandeur, betrayal and patricide.

Lets start our story with Kasyapa's father, King Dhatusena. During his youth, the country had been invaded by south Indians and the whole island was under their rule. Young Dhatusena who was of royal blood had been ordained as a Buddhist monk however his calling was elsewhere… discarding the saffron robes of a monk he took up arms, to free his people from twenty-eight years of foreign rule. During this period, he fell in love with a woman of a lower caste and they had a son, who they named Kasyapa.

After a ten-year campaign, Dhatusena succeeded in ousting the Indians and installed himself as king and set up his capital in Anuradhapura. He got married to a woman of a royal bloodline and had another son, Mugalan.

Even though Kasyapa was the eldest, as a consequence of his lowly birth, Kasyapa was overlooked as heir-apparent and Mugalan was declared next in line to the throne, thus sewing the seeds of hatred between the brothers.

To continue the tour, proceed to the top of the inner Rampart.