Close to the Sigiriya rock fortress is another informative tourist attraction of Matale, the Sigiriya museum. A museum is a significant place as a research center, information center and a management office of Sigiriya. While you are passing by the outer moat of the Sigiriya and the lotus pond carved out from the outer moat you will find the museum adjacent to the main way.
The Citadel of Sigiriya or the lion rock is a rock fortress rising above 200 meters above the surrounding plain. Though it is located within the cultural triangle of Sri Lanka in Matale district of the central province of Sri Lanka has been declared as a UNESCO world heritage site.
. It is said that the flat topped rock formation of the rock fortress was built by King Kashyapa (477-495AD). According to the ancient epic, Chulavamsha’ King kashayapa who took possession of the reign from the rightful brother ‘Muggalan’ wanted to make his capital at the top of this massive rock surrounded by the jungle from all sides. But King Kashyapa was defeated by Mugalam with the help of South Indian tribes in 295 CE. Thereby Mugalan was attained to the throne and the transferred the kingdom to Anuradhapura. Eventually, the Sigiriya was turned back to a monastery complex. Sigiriya calls backs to a great civilization of Sri Lanka. The new museum, surrounded by the forest and water provides an atmospheric environment to explore entire Sigiriya area. Even the architectural design of the museum differs from other museums of Sri Lanka cause of the technology and materials used. By the way, this is one of the most beautiful, informative and beneficial museums in Sri Lanka.
Further copied Sigiriya frescoes, re created model of lion’s paw, spiral staircase, bubble fountain and many more significant elements are exhibited and preserved in the place. The prehistoric megalithic burials at Ibbankatuwa will be conserved in the same place gradually. This masterpiece took 4 years to be completed. It was funded by Japan through JICA to promote and conserve cultural heritages. At the same time, the well-laid museum will provide the chance to see you an introduction video which shows what the fortress looked like when it was in use. The air conditioned museum is comprised with all modern facilities. Definitely, it is recommended for the travelers to visit the Sigiriya museum first get well known and then move on to the Sigiriya rock fortress.