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The UNESCO World Heritage Site-listed city of Polonnaruwa is one of Sri Lanka’s most ancient cities, dating back to before the 11th century. The city has been the seat of kingdoms and the building site of many important shrines and temples, all of which are now available to be seen by travelers to this city. Polonnaruwa is located in Sri Lanka’s North Central Province, just over 200 kilometers from Colombo. It’s best accessed by car, train, or bus from cities like Colombo.

The ancient ruins of the city are conveniently concentrated in the same area, commonly known as the Polonnaruwa Ancient City. This is where travelers can see landmarks such as the Gal Vihara Rock Temple, and most of the other important temples as well.

Travelers looking to learn more about the history of this area should not miss a visit to the Archaeological Museum, where artifacts and sculptures tell stories of this city’s ancient history.

There’s a lot more to see and do in Polonnaruwa, and the best way to discover what else this city has to offer in terms of attractions, landmarks, and hotels is by exploring the interactive map on this page.