To the east of the Cultural Triangle, following the Anuradhapura era is the second ancient capital of Sri Lanka, Polonnaruwa. The Plonnaruwa legacy may have lasted for only two centuries however judging by the colossal monuments and monasteries it left behind it is clear that it was dynasty that cannot be easily forgotten. The archaeology remains at Polonnaruwa are exhibited at the Museum of the Central Cultural Fund and its visitor centre.
It was King Vijayabahu I who defeated the Chola invaders and regained its land after 52 years. Since then Vijayabahu devoted his long reign to the restoration of the country. However Polonnaruwa is largely King Parakramabahu’s city. He built walls that would surround the city and further strengthened the fortifications of its inner city. The great Parakramabahu tank was built after he linked up and expanded three former tanks of Polonnaruwa.
Polonnaruwa is an unprecedented place due to its spectacular works of architecture that belong to both Buddhist and Hindu cultures. Stupendous image shrines like Lankathilaka, the Tivanka Image house, Gal Viharaya, Vatadageya and the Seven story edifice known as the Sathmahalprasada, just to name a few from the long list of invaluable sites that can be visited.