Located a mere 01km to the north of Sigiriya, the Pidurangala temple, became prominent in 5th century A.D. with the development of the Sigiriya fortress, and Sigiriya becoming the capital city of Sri Lanka. In the 18 years, the King Kashyapa reigned over Sri Lanka, this temple served as the Royal temple.
Archeological research shows however that the history of Pidurangala dates back to an earlier period; in the 2nd century B.C., the rock caves were used by the meditating Buddhist monks, according to the inscriptions found in the caves. Several drip-ledge caves are found in the area, used by monks for dwelling and meditating.
A long cave on the summit has been divided into three sections by walls, and in one cave which had been used as an image house, is the remains of a recumbent statue of the Lord Buddha depicted in death – it is 46.8ft long and made out of brick and stucco. The statue was vandalized by treasure hunters in the past.
The view from the top of the rock is breath-taking and covers Sigiriya, Ritigala, tanks of the area and surrounding forests. Climbing to the summit is not easy as the path ends near the top. But here there is peace.