Archaeological Museum
Archaeological Museum
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  • Kai Wah
    Malaysia2,797 contributions
    Overview of Polonnaruwa Architecture
    It is hard to miss this museum where is located right after the ticketing counter of Polonnaruwa Ancient Site. Worth to check it out which provides a good overviews and narrations of the architecture and structures of the ancient world at Polonnaruwa. A short visit of 30 mins to have some basic understanding would make the visit to the heritage sites more meaningful.
    Visited February 2020
    Traveled as a couple
    Written March 11, 2020
  • Terry M
    Hamilton, Canada4,638 contributions
    A NICE INTRODUCTION TO POLONNARUWA'S RICHES
    While you cannot take photographs, the museum does give you some perspective of the site. Some pieces of note included a bronze chest, ancient hospital tools and statues of Siva Nataraja and the amply breasted Sivakamasundari. The layout is quality over quantity. It can readily be visited in under an hour.
    Visited January 2020
    Written February 5, 2020
  • phait_lee
    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia529 contributions
    A quick introduction to the past kingdoms and kings of Sri Lanka
    The museum gives a quick introduction of what to expect from the Polonnaruwa archaeological site. It mainly showcases the 3 great kings of Sri Lanka, and the civilisation, education and religion that they brought to the people. Unfortunately you can’t take pictures inside the museum.
    Visited January 2020
    Traveled with friends
    Written January 10, 2020
  • Janka K
    Brno, Czech Republic6,241 contributions
    The start point for your Polonnaruwa hitorical sigh tour
    The museum is not as interesting as seeing the historical sights themselves, but it's definitely necessary to understand what you will actually visit at what location and what you will actually see. At the same time, this is a ticket office where you need to buy a ticket to enter different museum locations. As with anything at Sri Lanka, tourists and locals get very different prices for entrance tickets.
    Visited December 2022
    Traveled as a couple
    Written April 2, 2023
  • selvakumar2015
    684 contributions
    A small but beautiful museum in Pulanaruva, Sri Lanka.
    Located in natural settings surrounded by ponds brimming with water lilies, the archaeological museum of Pulanaruva needs atleast two hours to see the various artifacts discovered during archaeological excavations in and around Pulanaruva, Sri Lanka. The artifacts/ remains of both the victors and the vanquished are displayed in various sections of the museum. The museum is air-conditioned with a quiet ambience. The visitors, though few, comprise both domestic and international tourists. The entry fee is quite reasonable and the staff are friendly. A visitors book is also available for your comments. Enroute to Pulanaruva we also saw a few wild elephants. For unknown reasons, photography inside the museum is not allowed. Worth visiting.
    Visited September 2022
    Traveled solo
    Written October 17, 2022
  • S P
    15 contributions
    Rude and unhelpful staff let things down here.
    The staff are very rude and unhelpful here. They pressure you to buy tickets even for people who don't want to go. They followed us to the car for some reason to check who was in the car. Its all very strange. Rude and unhelpful staff let things down here.
    Visited February 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written February 4, 2023
  • Sipke vink
    Cairns, Australia206 contributions
    A must see
    Shame you are not aloud to make any pictures there are some interesting objects in display well worth it to see and explore
    Visited March 2020
    Traveled as a couple
    Written March 11, 2020
  • Riccardo R
    Udine, Italy208 contributions
    An excellent introduction to Polonnaruwa history and archaeology
    Excellent museum located in Polonnaruwa city centre, near the lake. Entrance is included in Polonnaruwa archaeological site ticket (Rs 3500 in January 2016). Very interesting guided tour (free) led by an archaeologist. On the first room, a large model of the city and ruins gives an idea of how enormous the city was. Many photos of the monuments before and after restoration. Stone sculptures of Hindu deities, Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, fragments of columns and capitels. Interesting stone boxes with offerings. Dancing Shiva Nataraja in bronze. Really worth the visit (better before the ruins)
    Visited January 2016
    Traveled solo
    Written February 16, 2016
  • lovethisplanet2014
    Palmerston, Australia223 contributions
    Some interesting originals but altogether in a sad state
    Mainly before-after pictures and a few models, The original items are worth it but don't plan for too much time in here. The aircon isn't working so it's like a sauna, too.
    Visited April 2019
    Traveled with friends
    Written April 29, 2019
  • worldnomad_01
    Los Angeles, California1,634 contributions
    Small but informative museum, worth your time
    Located outside the archeological park and near the ticket counter, the small museum would give you a feeling of the history of the place you're going to visit, an idea of the splendor that must have been the capital of the second oldest kingdom of the country, the Kindom of Polonnaruwa.
    Visited November 2018
    Written December 12, 2018
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.0
273 reviews
Excellent
69
Very good
117
Average
67
Poor
14
Terrible
6

Janka K
Brno, Czech Republic6,241 contributions
Dec 2022 • Couples
The museum is not as interesting as seeing the historical sights themselves, but it's definitely necessary to understand what you will actually visit at what location and what you will actually see. At the same time, this is a ticket office where you need to buy a ticket to enter different museum locations. As with anything at Sri Lanka, tourists and locals get very different prices for entrance tickets.
Written April 2, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

selvakumar2015
Chennai, India684 contributions
Sep 2022 • Solo
Located in natural settings surrounded by ponds brimming with water lilies, the archaeological museum of Pulanaruva needs atleast two hours to see the various artifacts discovered during archaeological excavations in and around Pulanaruva, Sri Lanka.

The artifacts/ remains of both the victors and the vanquished are displayed in various sections of the museum.

The museum is air-conditioned with a quiet ambience.

The visitors, though few, comprise both domestic and international tourists.

The entry fee is quite reasonable and the staff are friendly.
A visitors book is also available for your comments.
Enroute to Pulanaruva we also saw a few wild elephants.

For unknown reasons, photography inside the museum is not allowed.

Worth visiting.
Written October 17, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

S P
UK15 contributions
Feb 2023 • Family
The staff are very rude and unhelpful here. They pressure you to buy tickets even for people who don't want to go. They followed us to the car for some reason to check who was in the car. Its all very strange. Rude and unhelpful staff let things down here.
Written February 4, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sipke vink
Cairns, Australia206 contributions
Mar 2020 • Couples
Shame you are not aloud to make any pictures there are some interesting objects in display well worth it to see and explore
Written March 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Riccardo R
Udine, Italy208 contributions
Jan 2016 • Solo
Excellent museum located in Polonnaruwa city centre, near the lake. Entrance is included in Polonnaruwa archaeological site ticket (Rs 3500 in January 2016). Very interesting guided tour (free) led by an archaeologist. On the first room, a large model of the city and ruins gives an idea of how enormous the city was. Many photos of the monuments before and after restoration. Stone sculptures of Hindu deities, Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, fragments of columns and capitels. Interesting stone boxes with offerings. Dancing Shiva Nataraja in bronze. Really worth the visit (better before the ruins)
Written February 17, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

lovethisplanet2014
Palmerston, Australia223 contributions
Apr 2019 • Friends
Mainly before-after pictures and a few models, The original items are worth it but don't plan for too much time in here. The aircon isn't working so it's like a sauna, too.
Written April 29, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

worldnomad_01
Los Angeles, CA1,634 contributions
Nov 2018
Located outside the archeological park and near the ticket counter, the small museum would give you a feeling of the history of the place you're going to visit, an idea of the splendor that must have been the capital of the second oldest kingdom of the country, the Kindom of Polonnaruwa.
Written December 12, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Flo
26 contributions
Feb 2020 • Couples
Some nice exponation pieces but very little information.
Why number the pieces if there are no explanations as to what the numbers are? Why put several pieces together with the mere description „hindu ritual utensils“ without any further information on how or what for they were used?
Please put some effort into proper curation of the museum!
Written February 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Albia-Newton
Evanton, UK3,941 contributions
Feb 2020 • Couples
Has done nice artefacts and gives an understanding of the site. So much more could be done with a couple of films and a bit of computer graphic work. An opportunity waiting to be taken
Written February 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rosario_it
Belgium1,827 contributions
Aug 2018 • Solo
This museum is very good.
One good advice is to visit it before visiting all the sites present in Polonnaruwa. This because you will earn something more about the site in general which you can explore later.
Written July 8, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Archaeological Museum - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Frequently Asked Questions about Archaeological Museum

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Archaeological Museum Information

Excellent Reviews

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Very Good Reviews

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Archaeological Museum Photos

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