If exploring ancient cities spark your interest, Polonnaruwa is the best place to visit during your stay in Sri Lanka. The list is long as to what you can do in Polonnaruwa.
One of the main historical places in Polonnaruwa is the Royal Palace. As you enter, you can witness the ruins of the once magnificent palace. The palace is known to have served many kings and primarily King Parakramabahu I. This palace is thought to be massive back in the day with over 1000 chambers, however, at present only a few walls remain.
The Parakrama Samudra is another historical monument built by King Parakramabahu during his reign in the 12th Century. Only a portion of the reservoir remains at present and originally the reservoir consisted of 5 large reservoirs known as Thopa Vawa, Eramudu Vewa, Dumbuthulu Vewa, Kalahagala Vewa and Bhu Vewa. Even though the reservoir is no longer vast, the ancient structure is a sight to admire.
The Minneriya National Park
The Minneriya National Park is famous for its “gathering” (the gathering of elephants) with more than hundreds of elephants spotted in one sighting. The gathering in the national park is believed to be the largest grouping of elephants in all of Asia. The elephants can be seen eating and bathing in their natural habitat. If you’re lucky you may even be able to spot other wildlife inside the park; leopards, peacocks and deer and even more diverse wildlife like purple-faced leaf monkeys.