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Dambulla Cave Temple

Explore the Buddhist mural paintings and statues in the Dambulla Cave Temple complex. Also called the Golden Rock, admire the cave temple's exquisite architecture, which is one of the reasons why this is a top tourist attraction in almost every Sri Lanka tour.

Dambulla is one of the world's heritage sites declared by UNESCO. Also, Damba means rock, and Ulla means fountain; thus, you can see water dripping from the main house.

Take advantage of the eye-catching Buddha images and rock paintings of vivid colors and shapes from the 2nd century BC to the 18th century at the Dambulla cave temple complex. Also, The Golden Temple Dambulla and the Cave Temple are the most impressive structures that fascinate many visitors.

If you wish to explore this Dambulla Royal Cave Temple and Golden Temple, book Sri Lanka tour packages by Indian Holiday, which are customizable. For now, we have prepared a detailed guide to Dambulla Cave Temple to learn more about this place.

Overview of Dambulla Cave Temple

Location Dambulla, Matale District, about 20 km from Sigiriya
Address Kandy - Jaffna Highway, Dambulla, Sri Lanka
Timings 7 am to 7 pm


  •  Visit the exquisite Golden Temple Buddhist Museum, which has a beautiful entrance from the golden mouth of a lion.
  •  Head to the five caves to see the statues and paintings.
  •  Dambulla Cave Temple is the best-preserved cave temple and must be visited for Buddhist mural paintings.
  •  Witness the 157 figures in the complex.

Dambulla Cave Temple Entrance Tickets

Here is the Dambulla Cave Temple entrance fee -

  •  Cost of entry to Dambulla Cave Temple: LKR 1500 (INR 341)

Note: The price is subject to change at the time of booking

About Dambulla Cave

Often called The Golden Rock, The Cave Temple, or the Royal Rock Temple, this cave temple complex is a significant attraction in Sri Lanka. Spread over five caves instilled over 20 centuries, the highlights of Dambulla Cave Temple is Buddhist art, including beautiful statues and murals of Buddha. There is nothing just like a Dambulla cave temple dress code. However, you must wear clothes that cover your shoulders and knees to pay respect towards the culture of this country. 

The largest and best-preserved cave temple in Sri Lanka, Dambulla Cave Temple, has existed since prehistoric times. And it was in the 3rd century BC that a monastery was built here.

In the 1st century AD, the caves were converted into shrines until the 18th century. Most of the work was done during the Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa times. Hence, a Dambulla Cave Temple tour gives you a better outlook on the prehistoric time of this country. 

The temples were finally restored during the 18th century, and the Kingdom of Kandy painted them. The paintings were very intricate religious images painted on the rock ceilings. And in 1938, the architecture was adorned with entrances and arched galleries. 

Also, more than 80 caves have been documented near Dambulla Cave Temple, but the major ones are the five that have statues and paintings. The largest of these caves is called Maharaja Vihara Cave. UNESCO declared Dambulla Cave Temple a world heritage site in 1991.

Let’s discuss the caves of Dambulla Cave Temple.

Cave #1 - The Devaraha Lena - The Cave of ‘Lord of the Gods’ - This cave has a 45 feet statue of Buddha in a sleeping position. It is said to be the final passing away of the Parinirvama statue of Lord Buddha. 

Cave #2 - The Maharaja Lena - The Cave of ‘Great Kings’ - This 125 feet long and 75 feet wide cave with a height of 21 feet has statues of King Valagamba and King Nissankamalla. King Valagamba’s statue is made of wood with details painted on it. The cave has around 60 images.

Cave #3 - The Maha Alut Viharaya - The Cave of ‘Great New Temple’ - It has a reclining statue of Buddha 30 feet long and is carved out of living rock. Also, around 50 Buddha statues encircle the main seated Buddha Statue with a Dragon Arch design.

Cave #4 - The Paccima Viharaya - The Cave of ‘Western Temple’ - This cave has impressive seated Buddha images with a Makara Torana in dhyana mudra’ posture. Also, statues of Lord Vishnu and Saman are found here.

Cave #5 - The Devena Alut Viharaya - The Cave of ‘Second New Temple’ - The newest cave at Dambulla, and its exact construction time is not found in any records. A massive 32 feet long reclined Buddha image is located here, along with ten more

Interesting Facts about Dambulla Cave Temple

  •  You have to climb 300 steps to reach the temple, which will take 10-15 minutes.
  •  There are no services for food and water atop the temple. Carry your snacks and beware of the monkeys.
  •  Dambulla Cave Temple is a sacred Buddhist site carved into caves in the 3rd century BC.
  •  The cave temple is divided into five caves.
  •  The Cave Temple and the Golden Temple are built in the same complex.
  • Rock cave temple Dambulla is counted as one of the most visited tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

FAQS About Dambulla Cave Temple

Q: How much is the entrance fee to Dambulla Cave Temple?

Ans: The Dambulla Cave Temple ticket price is INR 342. However, this price is subject to change at the time of booking.

Q: How much time do you need at Dambulla Cave Temple?

Ans: Dambulla Cave Temple timings are from 7 am to 7 pm, and exploring the complex will take a minimum of 2 hours.

Q: How many steps are there in Dambulla Cave Temple?

Ans: You have to climb 300 steps to reach Dambulla Cave Temple.

Q: Where is Dambulla Cave Temple located?

Ans: Dambulla Cave Temple Sri Lanka is located in Matale District, approx. 20 km from Sigiriya on the Kandy - Jaffna Highway.

Q: What is the difference between Dambulla Cave Temple, Dambulla Rock Temple, and the Golden Temple?

Ans: Dambulla Cave Temple and Dambulla Rock Temple are the same. They are different names for the same temple. However, The Golden Temple Sri Lanka Dambulla is part of the temple complex, located at the bottom of the hill, near the main road. The Dambulla Cave Temple is located on top of the hill.