Kurullangala Prehistoric Cave Arts – Ella


Kurullangala Prehistoric Cave Arts in Karandagolla, near Ella in the Badulla District. It isn't apparent to approach the top, but once you reach, beautiful cave art structures are placed in such a breath-taking outlook that makes you wonder whether you are in that era at that time. The intricate art that has been done to accuracy consists of generous birds, peacocks, forms of humans and rock art that cannot be identified, and all this is reckoned to be over 5000 years old.
The trek to the summit starts through the bushes, which are reached from the Ella Wellawaya main road. That involves rock climbing. Therefore, please accompany a knowledgeable guide and necessary climbing equipment like ropes and harnesses.

More details

Unveiling the Ancient Drawings

The sprawling canvas of cave paintings covers a significant rock surface area, with some drawings etched so high that they seem almost beyond human reach. Sadly, the ravages of time and exposure to the elements have caused many drawings to fade. In certain areas, layers of painted rock have weathered away over the millennia.

The Enigmatic Bird Paintings

Nearly 100 meters above the central cave art, two bird paintings stand tall on a rock face known as Pettigala, defying access by ordinary means. The use of red ink for these drawings unifies them with the rest of the artwork, and intriguingly, the handprint of the ancient artist is still visible in a few areas.

The Arduous Hike to the Past

Embarking on the hike to Kurullangala demands both physical endurance and mental resolve. The arduous journey stretches for approximately 5-6 hours and encompasses treacherous sections, including almost vertical climbs. Hikers must carry ample water, food, and a medical kit to ensure safety.

Unravelling the Mystery

The most intriguing question surrounding Kurullangala's cave art pertains to the motivation behind its creation. Why would ancient inhabitants go through the considerable effort of painting these rocks, some of which are nearly inaccessible? The mystery deepens as we ponder whether this site was once used as a refuge by ancient cavemen in hiding or if it served a more sacred or ceremonial purpose.

The Kurullangala Prehistoric Cave Arts in Ella are a testament to our ancient ancestors' ingenuity and artistic capabilities. The majestic cave art, hidden amidst the lush jungles and treacherous terrain, offers us a glimpse into a long-lost world. While these artworks' true purpose and significance may forever remain in mystery, the wonder they inspire in modern-day explorers is a testament to their enduring allure.


1. Are the cave arts of Kurullangala open to the public?

Yes, the site is accessible to the public, but reaching it requires a challenging hike and the assistance of a local guide.

2. What is the best time to visit Kurullangala Prehistoric Cave Arts?

The best time to visit is during the dry season, typically from December to April, to avoid monsoon rains and slippery paths.

3. Can I take photographs of the cave art?

Photography is allowed, and capturing the intricate details of ancient drawings is encouraged.

4. Is there any ongoing research on cave art?

Scholars and researchers continue studying and analysing cave art to uncover more clues about its origins and significance.

5. Is there any accommodation available near Kurullangala?

Most visitors prefer to stay in Ella, where accommodations can be found, from guesthouses to luxury hotels.




Submit a Review

Send reply to a review

Hotel Booking



Send listing report

You already reported this listing

This is private and won't be shared with the owner.


Girl in a jacket



Sign in

Send Message

My favorites

Application Form

Claim Business