5th century rock fortress shadow cycling – Sigiriya

Uncover an isolated village before biking around the shadow of the 8th wonder of the world – Sigiriya Rock Fortress. Afterwards, cycle to a second rock fortress dating back to 1st and 2nd century BC.

sigiriya cycling tourSLDT/1702/CY03

Why should you book this trip?

  • Sri Lanka Day Tours' cycling tour of Sigiriya takes you on a journey into the areas surrounding the Sigiriya Rock Fortress.
  • It offers you an alternative activity to be engaged in during your time in Sigiriya.
  • Acquire more knowledge about daily routines of the villagers and interact with them directly.
  • Visit the Stupa believed to mark the spot where King Kashyapa, creator of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress was cremated.
  • Visit the less frequented but equally important Pidurangala Rock.
  • If you have not visited the Sigiriya Rock yet, it’s possible to couple this tour with the Sigiriya climb.
  • You will be led by knowledgeable and experienced cycle guide.




+94 70 222 8222




Included in the price

  • High quality, well-maintained mountain bikes with helmets
  • The services of a knowledgeable and experienced cycling guide
  • Drinking water during the cycle tour
  • Packed snacks and refreshments during the trail
  • Entrance permit for the Pidurangala Temple
  • Emergency back-up at any time
  • All Government taxes



  • Transportation to starting point and from the end point of the cycle trail
  • Any extra beverages or food and snacks consumed
  • Entrance fees to Sigiriya Rock Fortress
  • Optional activity costs
  • Any personal effects not mentioned here
  • Any tips for the attending staff
  • Any others expenses not mentioned in Price Inclusions section




Tour in brief

Do get in touch with your sales consultant as soon as the booking is confirmed, where you will be advised on the meeting point. Our cycling guide will meet you at the designated point on time.

Sri Lanka Day Tours' cycling tour of Sigiriya takes you on a journey into the areas surrounding the Sigiriya Rock Fortress.

The cycling tour starts at the entrance to the Sigiriya Rock Fortress. From there, you ride through "Thalkote", a remote isolated village to the Thalkotawewa (reservoir). At the village, you will be able to see and experience how traditional farming (paddy and other crops) is done. Chena cultivation (slash and burn farming) is prevalent in the area. The region's clean air and friendly environment is perfect for stress relief. The village borders Thalkotawewa, its main source of water.

Thalkotawewa and the thickets surrounding it are also perfect for bird watching in the morning and evening (the typical tour times). If you choose to take the tour in the morning, you may even witness signs of the presence of wild elephants in the area the night before. Stop and interact with villagers in the area and enjoy their hospitality. Make sure you take in the rich history of the area, as you make brief stops at a few of the archaeological sites.

Two of the important archeological sites we cover in this trail are the Stupa, believed to mark the spot where King Kashyapa, creator of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress was cremated and the Pidurangala Viharaya which dates back beyond the first and second century BC. Pidurangala was used as a Buddhist monastery and became a prominent place during the reign of King Kashyapa (473 - 495 AD).

A climb of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress is available as an add-on to an already exciting tour.

We stop at different places to meet the locals and to refresh ourselves.


  • Clients should bring suitable clothing for warm, windy and rainy conditions
  • Recommended items such as insect repellent and sun lotion should be brought by clients
  • Lightweight clothes and suitable footwear for cycling should be worn on the ride
  • Water bottles and refreshments should be carried by clients at all times 


Pidurangala climb

Pidurangala is a breathtaking rock formation located just a few kilometres north of Sigiriya. Its history is interwoven with that of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress and because it is far more difficult to climb, it has often been overlooked by tourists.

The history of Pidurangala Viharaya dates back beyond the first and second century BC. It was used as a Buddhist monastery and became prominent during the reign of King Kashyapa (473 – 495 AD).

Prince Kashyapa killed his father King Dhatusena and fled to Sigiriya to build a more secure place to prevent retaliation attacks from his half-brother Mugalan. With the arrival of King Kashyapa, the Bhikkus who were meditating there were requested move to the nearby Pidurangala.and were compensated when Kashyapa refurbished the temple.

Pidurangala was also formed by volcanic activity much like the Sigiriya rock.

Pidurangala appears larger than Sigiriya and its upper surface is steeply sloped which is why it was not suitable for large-scale building activity. The rocky outcrops that surround the central rock indicate what the area around Sigiriya may have looked like prior to its preparation as a royal citadel. The Pidurangala area has been occupied on and off for over 2500 years by monks who lived in the caves around the site.

Climbing to the top of Pidurangala Rock is more strenuous than climbing Sigiriya.

If you are fit and adventurous it is a climb worth making and will take you around two hours.

The climb can be divided into two stages.

First Stage

This climb has very steep irregular steps leading to a landing. This stage is strenuous but doable by reasonably fit people. (If you climbed Sigiriya you can climb this).

Second Stage.

This is predominately uncharted territory. It has no clearly defined paths or stairs. The second stage of the climb starts at the far end of this landing, past the Reclining Buddha, and should only be attempted by those who are fit and not over-weight. Your size and fitness becomes a major issue here because you have to climb up steep boulders and creep through very tight crevices. This stage is definitely not for the unfit or overweight.



Built by king Kashyapa in the 5th Century AD and abandoned soon after his death, the Sigiriya Rock fortress is unique among ancient architectural, artistic, and engineering feats. Some of Sigiriya's mysteries remain unsolved to this day.

Remnants of the royal palace on top of the 200-metre-high monolith, and the gardens in the surrounding area exhibit the practical and aesthetic value of Sigiriya as the home of a powerful king.

The fertile lands of Sigiriya have been used for agriculture for at least 2000 years. It is thought that the area has been inhabited since pre-historic times.


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