F&W Free Preview All You Coastal Living Cooking Light Food and Wine tab Health myRecipes Southern Living Sunset
My F&W
quick save (...)

Dambulla Cave Temple

Golden Temple of Dambulla
Dambulla , Sri Lanka http://www.goldentemple.lk/siteN/

What Lies Beneath: Hundreds of gilded Buddhist statues, some 50 feet long, sit, stand, and lie beneath 21,000 square feet of tapestry-like cave paintings depicting Buddha and his life. Statues of Ganesh and Vishnu are also garnished daily with fresh garlands from the pilgrims who come to worship.

How Did It Get There: Carved out of the side of a rock by the hands of Buddhist monks 22 centuries ago, this five-chambered cave temple has been in continuous use as a monastery ever since. As thanks to his saviors, an exiled king, who hid among the monks for 14 years before returning to power in the 1st century B.C., is credited with turning the caves into the temple that it is today.

Cool Bonus: Later kings followed suit, adding statues and paying for the temple’s preservation, but when the royalty stopped helping, an unknown donor stepped in and had the deteriorating paintings and sculptures refurbished in 1915.

advertisement
The Dish
Receive delicious recipes and smart wine advice 4x per week in this e-newsletter.
The Wine List Weekly pairing plus best bottles to buy.
F&W Daily One sensational dish served fresh every day.
American Express Publishing ("AEP") may use your email address to send you account updates and offers that may interest you. To learn more about the ways we may use your email address and about your privacy choices, read the AEP Privacy Statement.
How we use your email address
advertisement
Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Already looking forward to next year (June 19-21, 2015)? Relive your favorite moments from the culinary world's most sensational weekend in the Rocky Mountains.