Sri Lanka: Polonnaruwa (southern sites)

Ancient City of Polonnaruwa is the ruins of the capital city of the 10th century kingdom that unified the entire Sri Lanka. It’s a massive sprawling city with many ruins in remarkable perfect shape. The southern sites contain the ruins of the royal palace and baths, council chamber, and the spectacular circular arena of Polonnaruwa Vatadage. The latter is adorned with several Buddha statues from four entrances and well preserved moon stones (semi circles with lunar calendar of bull and elephants on them). Given the tremendously religious significance f the place, you are required to take your shoes off – so you can see tourists jumping and prancing on the hot black rocks to avoid inevitable sole burn from sun-overheated ground.