The emblem of grandeur in the ancient city of Polonnaruwa
Ever wondered what life would have been like for a king of the 12th century in Sri Lanka? Among all the archeological wonders of Polonnaruwa the Royal Palace of King Parakramabahu can be referred as the most prominent one. This Royal Palace was built by King Parakramabahu the great whose reign was Polonnaruwa‘s golden age. The Royal Palace was known as the Vijayanta Prasada which originally had been a seven storied palace with thousand chambers. It is believed that this might have been like a skyscraper where King Parakramabahu used to look around at the marvelous things he had made and content himself. The Royal Palace of King Parakramabahu was declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1982 for its great historical importance.
Anybody who visits this sight will realize what a magnificent royal complex it had been back in the days of King Parakramabahu. At present you can see three stories of brick with holes that supported the top floors with traces of the original plaster that covered the bricks. The basic ground plan of the palace is similar to that of the Vijayabahu palace at Anuradhapura and the palaces at Panduvasnuvara and Yapahuwa. Mahavamsa records reveal that there were thousand chambers and also ruins of many buildings can be seen around the palace. These buildings may have been used for various purposes such as performing rituals, entertainment, rooms for palace aides and storage. According to historical records South and East Indian invaders have destroyed this amazing Royal Palace by burning it down.
The Royal Palace of King Parakramabahu would have been one of the tallest occupied buildings in the world during that era. Anyone who visits this beautiful ruin will be taken back on a journey to an era when Sri Lanka was a self-sufficient country ruled by one of the greatest kings in Sri Lankan history