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Historic Site

When should you visit a historic site? Historic sites are locations where pieces of political, cultural, or social history have been preserved. Often due to their cultural value. Historic sites can be temples, whole cities, pyramids, castles, churches or any other kind of buildings.

This is one of the most stunning historical sites of Sri Lanka. It's also very popular and heavily crowded at times. We show you how to avoid the crowds and make the most out of your visit. Also, make sure to read our 7 must-know tips before you visit at the end of the article.

Avoiding the Crowds

Sigiriya Stairs Sri Lanka by Falco Ermet, CC BY

It's significantly less crowded in the early morning and in the late afternoon. If you want to avoid midday heat and beat the crowds at the same time, be there at 7 a.m. sharp or visit in the late afternoon.  Visiting later in the day (about 2 hours before they close) also gives you the perfect light for a good shot of Sigiriya Rock.  Especially the intriguing fresco paintings are at their best in the late-afternoon light. However, for a perfect photo, it needs to be sunny. Avoid weekends and public holidays if possible, as in addition to foreign tourists many local and domestic visitor are there. Overview of public holidays: Sri Lanka Public Holidays. Opening hours from 7 am - 5:30 pm. The entrance fee is costly (30 $ in 2017), and the experience may get spoiled when you arrive at midday while sharing the place with tons of other tourists.

Climate / Weather

Sigiriya Rock by Vinnie Cartabiano, CC BY

'Dry season' in this area is from May to August/September but often overcast from June to August. It's a tropical climate with humidity around 80 % most of the year. October until December are the wettest months. From January to May it's frequently sunny. We spent two days at Sigiriya in January, and the weather was quite nice. Helpful weather overview: Climate - Average Monthly Weather Sigiriya

Sigiriya is a year-round destination. It usually offers the most pleasant weather conditions between January and June. However, showers can occur throughout the year.

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Any time of year within the same month as significant seasonal holidays such as Christmastime, 4th of July, and Halloween. The house will be magnificently adorned and stories will flow with rich historical texture.

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Hours are limited, you'll want to be mindful about making sure your schedule lines up with their times.

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Evening prior to sunset. Downtown Joliet can become congested with court traffic. Consider waiting until 4 pm or later. Sunset lights up the sharp features of the station.

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Depending on the season, allow for a 3-4 hour hike on the trail before dusk. You will have beautiful views at the end of your hike of the Industrial sites in the distance as their lights turn on and dramatic light and shadows on the old swing bridge.

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Most attractions are open from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Some windmills and houses are closed during the winter from November onwards.

Avoiding crowds

Very popular with almost two million visitors each year. Either you arrive in the morning or after 3 p.m. Even more crowded at the tulip season in April when tour buses combine Keukenhof with Zaanse Schans. Fewer visitors from mid-September on. October during the school holidays again more crowded. The quietest and less busy months are in the wintertime, but some windmills remain closed.

Beautiful to arrive by boat, offered only from May to October from Friday to Sunday. 

Where to Stay in Walking Distance

It's an open-air museum where you can spend a whole day. If you stay within walking distance you can enjoy the whole scenery also without crowds. Our favorite B&B is the Hotel "Heerlijck Slaapen op de Zaanse Schans". This means "sleeping excellent at the Zaanse Schans. The hotel has a bike rental service.

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