Anuradhapura - Photos by Sri Lanka Travel Agency, Andorra, Andorra la Vella

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This was the country's first capital and was the island's ruling city for over a thousand years from 380 BC onwards. The remains of this ancient city are considered to be one of the county's greatest attractions and its magnificent palaces, temples and stupas are indicative of the civilised nature of the Sinhalese people who built them. The complex is home to several key attractions, including the Jetavanarama Dagoba building and the Bodhi tree under which the Buddha is alleged to have gained enlightenment. At a little over 125 miles from Colombo, Anuradhapura can be visited on a long day trip but an overnight excursion is a better option.