I took this photo at The #Temple of #Bacchus also known as the sanctuary of #Atargatis with its 69m length and 36m width and its 18.2m high columns makes you feel like an ant when you walk through its entrance. There is no antique temple of this size anywhere else in the world that is so well preserved. Atargatis was the second diety of the Phoenician pantheon, and formed a couple with Baal. She was the mother of the gods and represented female fecundity, sexual desire and war, with her vine, her crescent and her lions. There is no evidence that this temple was converted in to a church, as may be found elsewhere in the Levant.
Sometimes it’s easy to miss the simple things along a journey. I had missed several opportunities to take pictures of the fisherman’s boats in Galle and this was to be my last day here. Enroute back to the hotel I asked my taxi driver to pull over so I could take a few photos. What I had not realised was what lied in the horizon on the hills. The taxi driver simply gestured in the direction of the hills as we were driving past in Singhalese. I simply nodded my head and pointed in the direction not knowing what exactly lied there. We drove up steeply for a few minutes before driving through a little tropical jungle and arrived at this temple. It was pin-drop quiet here, this temple had been built recently as a gift from the people of Japan. I was amazed to find that the only people here were the taxi driver, a monk and I. Having seen so many tourists in the area I was a little surprised not to see many more here. May be it was the heat? We took off our shoes and went up to the Stupa. Its large, very large and you really do feel minuscule in front of it. As one direction faces the main temple the other side faces out on the Indian Ocean. There are some magnificent views here, given the elevation it is at. After a few more shots, we headed back down, on the way stopping over at a mental health facility (primarly for the excellent views!) which was aptly placed in the hills far away from civilisation. May be it would be too much to read in to why this was here, so far away, high in the hills overlooking Galle?