A Word A Week: Mural – Ancient Frescoes at Sigiriya

Ancient Frescoes at Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

About half way up the face of Sigiryia, a mountain fortress in Sri Lanka, hardy climbers will find a cave covered with frescoes of exotic maidens. These ancient murals (5th century AD) covered much of the face of the rock fortress at one time, but now only fragments remain. Other previously frescoed caves are inaccessible, as seen in the second photograph.

Sigiriya: 5th century AD frescoes on cave walls depicting maidens (though there is some discussion re the date and iconograpy).

Sigiriya: 5th century AD frescoes on cave walls depicting maidens (though there is discussion re the date and iconography).

The front of Sigiriya.

The front of Sigiriya.

Climbing up to the cave painting level meant traversing many narrow, worn steps, steep paths, and finally, a spiral, metal staircase. It just about did me in. I passed on climbing to the top of Sigiriya. Sigiriya is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

A Word A Week: Mural


Explore, Photography, Travel


Hey, Kat. Thanks for asking. It was wonderful. I loved the country and the people. The only hassle was the terrible traffic in and out of Colombo and the terrible state of the roads up into the highlands.


Glad you had a wonderful time in SL. It’s the people of Sri Lanka that I absolutely love – have fond memories of them too.


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