How to Design Sigiriya

Welcome to visit Sigiriya Rock, and we hope to give you a brief overview of the important places and Sigiriya Map layout here so that this trip can be more than just another trip that adds meaning and value.

Overview of Sigiriya Rock Layout

The plan of Sigiriya Rock and its various locations are named in the plan. The following is an introduction to the designated locations and Sigiriya map layout

Places to visit

1 Outer Rampart2 Outer Moat3 Middle Rampart
4 Inner Moat5 Inner Rampart6 Western Entrance
7 Southern Entrance8 Northern Entrance9 Water Garden No 1
10 Ambagaspitiya Inscription11 Ancient Plaster12 Water Garden No 2
13 Southern Summer Place14 Water Garden No 315 Octagonal Pond
16 Inner City Wall17 Boulder Garden18 Stupa
19 Image Cave20 Bodhi-tree Shrine21 Deraniyagala Cave
22 Cobra-Hood Cave23 Boulder Arch No 224 Asana Cave
25 Audience Hall26 Plaster with Graffiti27 Boulder Arch No 1
28 Ancient Pathway29 Terraced Garden30 Mirror Wall
31 Painting32 Lion’s Paw33 Lion’s Paw Terrace
34 Palace35 Palace Complex36 Thorne
37 Petangala38 Miniature Water Garden39 Preaching Rock
40 Cistern41Count Yard42 Prison Rock
43 Mapagala

Sigiriya Architecture

Anthropologists and archaeologists believe that the ancient Sigiriya materialism is one of the highest in the world. They point out that there are two main areas of output here. The first is the concern about security. The second is the specialization of artistry.

In addition, many scientists around the world have acknowledged that Sigiriya occupies an excellent place in comparison to the architectural concepts created by ancient world cities.

There are several differences in the design of Sigiriya compared to other Sri Lankan city designs. Safety has always been a priority here the palace is located in the center of the city complex. It further appears that the fort, which was a fort, was built without thinking that it would protect it.

Here, it is clear that the center of the rock, which is in a north-south orientation, is taken as the midpoint and the city is formed linearly so that the north-south and entrance and many of the artworks are oriented westward.

Notable features of the city include gates. Fences and moats and caves what make it special is the types of stones used to create them and how they are made and the way they are made by building environmental connections.

How the doors are designed

There are four gates to enter Sigiriya. Of these, the west gate occupies a prominent place. Scientists believe that the west may have been the main entrance because all the creation in the rock are oriented west. Another reasons for this view is that there is access to the western inlet moat. The other thing is that, this door is more aesthetically pleasing than any other door.
         The other main entrance are the north facing gate towards Pidurangala and the south-Facing gate. These two gates look very similar. The most beautiful and glorious of all these gates was the lion gate to climb the rock. Scientists speculate that the head of this lion gate may have been destroyed.
                               Analyzing all these facts, it is clear that in the design of the Sigiriya fortress and the city, the gates were designed in such a way as to increase security, taking into account many factors.

Design of Walls and Moats

There were two moats and three walls mainly around the city of Sigiriya. The shortest wall found at the beginning is called the outer wall. The outer wall is a massive earthen structure about 130 feet wide and nearly 6mils long. The widest moat that comes with it is called the outer moat. The outer moat is about 175 feet wide and 13 feet deep. The plain area is found after the outer moat, followed by a narrow but deep moat, with a rampart including a higher one.

Sigiriya water Technology
Outer Moat

Scientists believe that the outer wall was made of mud, the middle wall made of brick and the inner wall made of stone at the end.

Another special feature of this place is that the eastern walls are twice the distance from the center of Sigiriya to the western walls. However, the fact that the eastern walls are not as systematic and beautiful as the western walls is still an unresolved issue.

Cave Design

Among the Sgiriya creations, the first is the cave design. Some of the caves are said to be more than 5000 years old. However, many drip-lined caves dating back more than two or three hundred years to the King Kashyapa period have also been found. In particular, dripstones can be seen only in the caves to the west of Sigiriya rock. The most famous of this cave is the Naipena cave (Cobra Hood Cave).

Cobra Hood Cave
Cobra Hood Cave

Types of Stones used and How they are Used

One of the main features of Sigiriya obstetrics and Gynecology is that it has been used in a wide variety of designs for the world. The dripping on the rocks here is considered to be the oldest knows use of stone. There are also unbelievable dripstones on the Sigiriya rock that could have been made in such a distant time. It is about 1200feet high from the ground, and 160 feet wide from the top of the rock, with a straight cut across the western and northern halves.

Black stone has been used extensively for ditches, ramparts and columns In addition, you can see the construction of ponds, stone seats, pavilions, etc.

Limestone is a type of stone that contributes to Sigiriya architecture after granite. Limestone has been used extensively for watchtowers, rafters, water lilies, drainage systems and the surface of buildings.

sigiriya technology

Brick is the main type of stone used in the construction of Sigiriya from a small comb wall to a large wall. Brick have been used to create much of Sigiriya. Scientists believe that millions of bricks may have been used to complete the palace complex on top of the Sigiriya Rock, and it is difficult to imagine how such a large mass of bricks could have been carried to the top of rock as high as 660 feet.

Hundreds of thousands more bricks may have been used to create the mirror wall on the western slope after the upper palace complex, and to create the entire lion statue, which now has only two legs left. Brick has also been used extensively in the design of ponds, housed and other city building.

Use of Wood

In Sigiriya architecture, woods have also been used extensively. Many of the designs on the rock surface, made of brick or other stone, appear to have been open pavilions. Since almost all of their roofs were tile roofs, the roof was also made of wood for tiling.

Use of Clay

Flat tiles and roof tiles have been used for the roofs and clay has been used extensively for this purpose. Also, clay has been used extensively to make tower heads. The heads of these towers were beautifully finished.

Building Design

In addition to the royal palace complex of Sigiriya architecture, another important part of the city is the house architecture. This main raw material used in the construction of Sigiriya urban houses is granite, brick, limestone mortar and wood. Mostly brick was used and granite and wood were used sparingly. Limestone mortar has been used to make these interconnected.

Garden Planning

The Sigiriya Park Complex is one of the most important and oldest garden designs in the world. In particular, starting from the moat on the west side of the Sigiriya rock, the walled landscape features a garden with a variety of object-oriented dynamics. In particular, it can be seen that these parks have been created with a focus on water retention. This park complex can be divided into three parts. Namely as;

Rock Gardens

Slightly above the symmetrical water park, there is a rock garden. This garden is not designed to be as symmetrical or harmonious as a water park. It is designed to be asymmetrical or mismatched. Presumably, there must have been some kind of creation in every rock here. This is because almost all of those rocks have the foundations or pits needed to build a building. There is also a large water tank made of granite in the garden, and a throne made of stone about 16 feet long. In addition, there is an auditorium made of stone. From the end of the rock garden, there is a large stone and brick wall to enter the inner city.

 Yard Design

sigiriya garden

                         Yard design is another part of Sigiriya architectural design. These yards are designed to be near the base of the rock. These symmetrical circular yards, made of succulent stones, are arranged so that one is higher than the other around the rock. In addition, the courtyards of the rock are designed to resemble the courtyards of the palace.

Size of Sigiriya

The height of Sigiriya rock is 200 meters or nearly 1200 feet. The city of Sigiriya, which includes the Sigiriya rock, is spread over an area of 3 km in length and nearly 1 km in width. With a large lake, several temples, the Mapagala Fort, waterways and drainage systems, and parks and water parks, this city boundary is a mirror that reflects the past life of the arid region. (But according to the archaeological evidence found, there is evidence that the Aryan people lived in this area even long before the time of King Kasyapa. For example, the walls of the Mapagala Fort, which are made of stone blocks of various sizes on the south side near the Sigiriya rock, have been confirmed to be centuries old.)

The Mapagala Fort Complex is located about 400 meters south of the Sigiriya Rock and covers an area of about 17 acres. There are about 2 hills in this complex.

Kurutu Gee written on the Sigiriya Mirror Wall

People use Sigiriya murals to write Sigiri Kurutu gee. Although there is no public mention of Sigiriya from the 14th to the 19th century, it can be understood that many Sri Lankans climbed and visited Sigiriya by exploring Kurutu Gee. Seeing the nude and semi-nude female figures on this Sigiriya rock, the thoughts that came to their minds rose to the poem, thus the Sigiri Kurutu gee was written.

Many of the writers of Sigiri Kurutu Gee have followed the traditions and have not been able to clearly understand the eras or kingdoms in which they were written. However, many of these Kurutu Gee is full of erotic flavours.

However, according to some linguists and archaeologists, these Sigiriya songs have a linguistic resemblance to that of Anuradhapura, and according to some written sources, traces of the folklore of the Anuradhapura period can be seen.

Although another Commissioner came after Mr H.C.P. Bell, Prof. Senarath Paranavithana started reciting Kurutu Gee after he was appointed as the third Commissioner of Archaeology (First Sri Lankan Commissioner) in Ceylon. In 1956 he published a two-volume book titled ‘Sigiri Kurutu Gee’ containing 685 Sigiri Kurutu Gee. Linguists are of the opinion that the publication of this book has revealed a great deal of information about the ancient Sinhalese.

However, Sigiri songs have given an important place in our literature. Also, through this, we have been able to uncover a lot of information about Anuradhapura, which has been the capital of our country for the longest time. It is also fortunate that it reveals some of the facts that have been buried in our literature and history due to later threats of foreign invasions and epidemics.

Sigiri songs can be cited as a multifaceted source. The reason for this is that the different people who came to see this Sigiriya represent different provinces and different classes, so the ideas that have been written are different. That public interest can be considered as multiple sources.

Another special point that can be pointed out here is that the real ideas of the people are expressed in the same way as it is not traditional here. It is clear that religion has taken precedence over our history in general, as well as in almost every other written text and inscription. But here a separate subculture has begun to emerge as people, without any fear or suspicion, come forward to write their own erotic ideas, free from religions.

Sigiriya Murals

Sigiriya murals are one of the most famous paintings in the world. According to the Sigiriya Cretaceous, written in the 8th century AD, there were nearly 502 Ranwanlian (Sigiriya women’s paintings), but only 21 are clearly visible today.

There are several specialities in these paintings. Some of the main ones are that the human bodies are slightly smaller than the average size, and only nude female figures are worn above the waist. Prior to the painting, the plaster was laid on the stone and according to unconfirmed facts, the plaster was made from raw materials such as bananas, milk and Dahaiya. Ingredients such as Gotukiri, Ranavara, Cosmul and spider clay have been used to colour these paintings.

In women’s painting, no matter how well the use of colour is done, the artist has also been able to add three-dimensionality to the images by highlighting the darkness and light by drawing the oil tip tight and light. Also, because of the brush strokes on the body parts of the female figures, these images look like nude female figures with a beard. As mentioned in the literature, rounded breasts, slender arms, broad, muscular, narrowed eyes, and copper lips can be seen in the same way in these paintings. These nude female figures are mainly found on the western slope and in addition, can be seen in the Deraniyagala cave and the Naipena cave. You can see that there are three types of beautiful girls in these female figures. Above the waist, you can see nude golden women, as well as blue women wearing bras, as well as individual and couples. Another special feature that can be seen here is that all these female figures are covered with clouds below the waist, pretending to be from the clouds. The background of the women emerging from the red clouds as the sun sets is also a special feature.

Prof. Senarath Paranavithana has introduced these two types of women, namely, golden women as electricity and blue women as rain clouds.

Among these women’s paintings, there are a variety of smooth action techniques. Some women awaken a flower bud. Other put flowers in pots. Another woman can be seen laying flowers on the ground. In addition, there are women holding flower pots, looking at the flowers.

Sangarama Complex

The monastery complex begins with the ruins of a small dagoba at the beginning of the rock garden. To the right of it, there is an idol house and a Bodhi tree attached to the cave. The monastery complex is believed to date back to the 23rd century BC. Going a little further, you will find a part of a monk monastery called Deraniyagala Cave. After passing these, as you ascend below the stone arch, to the right is a small footpath overlooking the royal pavilion and the small pond on its rocky plateau. The footpath leads to the cave monasteries. The Naipena Cave and several other small rock monasteries can be seen in the area. Many of these caves have dripstones and short brick walls. In one of the monasteries, there is a seat made of stone and the walls are whitewashed and painted. In addition, remnants of the Naipena Cave can be seen.

Craft Techniques Used for Drawing

Specialists believe that the artist used six basic principles to draw these Sigiriya paintings. These are the principles of size, shape, image, colour, beauty and analogy. All of these paintings can be considered young women, depending on how the body parts are drawn. No matter how hard a woman tries to maintain the naturalness of her body, she even wears wrinkles on her abdomen when the body bends. Today, only standing postures remain, but specialists speculate that there may have been other postures in the past.

 There are expressions of the nature of the Sigiriya paintings. Those who were fascinated by those sentiments wrote Sigiriya Kurutugi. The Sigiriya paintings are considered to be among the finest in the world, as the colour combinations are well done and the feminine elegance is properly polished.

Surprisingly, however, it has survived for nearly 1,500 years, protected from natural forces such as the sun and wind, and from birds such as the storks that make their nests on art.

Forgotten after the 14th century, Sigiriya was revived by Forbes, a British major. He has been in Sri Lanka for about 11 years and has written a book about it. In addition to the contents of the book, he visited Sigiriya twice during his explorations. On his second trip, he noted that he had seen some boldly painted paintings of a protruding part of the rock. That was around the middle of the 19th century.

It is said that Mr.H.C.P. Bell, a British civil servant who is the first Commissioner General of Archaeology in Sri Lanka, visited Sigiriya and started the conservation of Sigiriya after visiting and reading Mr Forbes’ reports.

There are three types of paintings in the history of the world and three methods are used to draw them. One method is called fresco, the other is called Frescolestro, and the other is called Tempera. The first method is to draw with water-based paint in a wet mortar, while the second method involves the application of paints using adhesives. The third method is to apply a fresh mortar and paint with a combination of organic glue and colour before it dries. According to this method, only a considerable amount of the dye is processed per day and the colours are prepared for the day before starting work the next day.