Sigiriya is called Lion Mountain or Lion Rock in English.
Image Credit: Photograph by SylvainB/Shutterstock.
One of the most well-known sites in Sri Lanka, Sigiriya is a granite monolith that rises above the jungle in the center of the island nation.
The sides of the rock are nearly vertical, and people who climb to the flattened summit must navigate a series of stairs that are not for the faint of heart.
The views from this nature-made tower are tremendous (as long as you do not suffer from vertigo), but the real attractions are the remnants of an ancient civilization that visitors encounter during the climb.
The most captivating relics are frescoes that date back to the 5th century. The mountain also includes a series of tiled staircases and ancient gardens.
Historians say that the monolith was site of a fortress in the 5th century by a powerful Sri Lankan king. These military structures were subsequently turned into a Buddhist monastery.
I caught a wave to my head, and then another one right after that,” says photographer Fred Pompermayer of this shot he took of surfer Adriano De Souza riding a wave in the early morning darkness in Mentawai, Sumatra.
“It took all of my energy just to get back to the boat after that.
”Pompermayer and De Souza were part of a team that had spent time surfing during the day and traveling at night by boat from island to island.
On the day this photo was taken, the team arrived at the location around 4 a.m. and jumped in.
Mount Sinabung volcano spews lava and ash during an eruption seen from Tiga Pancur village in Karo.
Photograph: Antara Foto/Reuters
Mount Sinabung is a Pleistocene-to-Holocene stratovolcano of andesite and dacite in the Karo plateau of Karo Regency, North Sumatra, Indonesia, 25 miles from the Lake Toba supervolcano.
Many old lava flows are on its flanks and the last known eruption, before recent times, occurred in the year 1600.
Solfataric activities were last observed at the summit in 1912; recent documented events include an eruption in the early hours of 29 August 2010 and eruptions in September and November 2013, January, February and October 2014.
Between 2013 and 2014 the alert for a major event was increased with no significant activity.
On 2 June 2015 the alert was again increased, and as of 26 June 2015 at least 10,000 people have been evacuated, fearing a major eruption.
The long eruption of Mount Sinabung is similar to Mount Unzen in Japan, which erupted for 5 years after lying dormant for 200 years.