Climbing Sigiriya Rock will be a highlight of your time in Sri Lanka. Located in the Matale District near the town of Dambulla, the iconic Sigiriya Rock is one of the most popular landmarks and valuable historical monuments in Sri Lanka. Originally used as a monastery, this ancient palace and fortress complex is of great archaeological significance. Climbing to the top of this lion shaped fortress will take you on a ‘1270 step’ hike up a steep climb but once you reach the top you are rewarded with an awe inspiring 360 degree view. The trip takes about 45 minutes each way and will definitely be one you can tick off your bucket list. Sigiriya Rock consists of a citadel and has ruins of palaces, the Lion Gate, gardens, moats, the Mirror wall and many beautiful frescoes (paintings made in wet plaster on walls). The name was derived from the Lion claws carved at the entrance of the Lion Gate.