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The province is replete with many archaeological sites being the seat of four medieval kingdoms of Sri Lanka between the mid 12th and mid 14th centuries. Having been forced to move capitals due to foreign invasions, Sri Lankan kings nevertheless built magnificent citadels in areas like Panduwasnuwara, Dambadeniya, Yapahuwa and Kurunegala. Impressive remains of those citadels, palaces, Buddhist temples and monasteries provide breathtaking sightings to visitors.
The province is also home for other ancient Buddhist rock temples, mostly with 1st century BC roots, with wall and ceiling frescos, colossal Buddha images, stone inscriptions and sculptures dating from early medieval to 18th century.
With the sparkling blue surf of the Indian Ocean and scenic tropical lagoons, the province has a long stretch of wide, sun drenched golden beaches. These beaches extend from Waikkal at its southern end to the Dutch Bay in the Puttalam district.
Some of the province’s best beach resorts are Marawila, Talawila, Kalpitiya and Waikkal. These beaches are often with the bonus of a lagoon or a river front and make excellent bases for stay-put beach holidays. Some of the beach resorts also offer viewing of underwater coral wonderlands off Kandakuliya and Karaitivu. Many fishing villages are seen in the coastal areas.
Text by Neil Kiriella