Kandy was the last capital city of the Sri Lankan Kings, and it is an official Unesco World Heritage Town. Getting to this sprawling city in the central highlands of Sri Lanka will take you through the breathtaking landscape of endless tea plantations. Coming from Ella in Hill County? Then, you may be up for one of the most scenic train rides of your life. Kandy is a beautiful city with a large man-made lake in the centre, and there are many things to see and do in and around this peaceful town. Home to plenty of shops and restaurants, you can easily spend a couple of days here, soaking up the ambience while staying in a private Sri Lanka villa within walking distance of the lake. Your villa will be the perfect base from where you can go explore, and you can be sure you will enjoy every minute of your time.

1. Stroll around and picnic at Kandy Lake

Totally free of charge and nonetheless something you will love and shouldn’t miss out on! Circling the artificial, man-made Kandy Lake located in the heart of town, a lovely stroll of 3.5 kilometers, is a wonderful experience. Kandy Lake was built in 1807 by King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe next to the city’s main attraction ‘The Temple of the Tooth’. Folklore tales say that the island in the middle of the lake was a bathing spot for the king and that it connects to the palace via a secret underwater tunnel. At the lake, it is wonderfully peaceful and tranquil, surrounded by old trees and lush greenery. There are also tons of exotic birds to be spotted. Why not bring a picnic basket and sit on a bench by the side of the lake, taking in the views and spending undisturbed quality time with your loved one(s)? At the southwest corner of the lake, you will find a playground that kids will definitely love.

2. Visit the sacred Temple of the Tooth

Located next to the lake in the royal palace complex, sits the sacred, golden-roofed Temple of the Tooth. Inside the temple, there is guarded golden stupa with a special casket believed to contain the left upper canine tooth of Lord Buddha himself, taken from him while he was lying on his funeral bed. The temple is one of the most sacred pilgrimage sites for Buddhists in all of Sri Lanka. From the outside, the temple doesn’t look too impressive, but inside it is beautifully carved and decorated with woods and ivory. Worshippers bring lotus and frangipani flowers every day. The Temple of the Tooth is Kandy’s main attraction so do take note that it can get crowded.

3. Wander around in the Royal Botanical Gardens

Located approximately 5.5 km to the west of Kandy, the Royal Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya has over 4,000 species of plants including medicinal plants, local spices and a large collection of orchids. Manicured lawns, peaceful lakes, a suspension bridge, ancient trees, colorful flowers – wandering around here sure gives you peace of mind and allows you to connect with nature. It is one well-maintained oasis of bliss and peacefulness. A fruit bat colony has taken these gardens as their home, and you can see hundreds of them hanging in the treetops of the tallest trees.

4. Watch a Kandyan Dance

After sunset and a delightful dinner, brace yourselves for an impressive, traditional Kandyan Dance performance. This enchanting dance is said to descent from a ritual known as Kohomba Kankariya brought over by Indian shamans traveling to the island. The performance features beautiful costumes, hypnotizing drums, gorgeous dances and an exhilarating fire-walking act. The show lasts for one hour, and it is great fun for kids, too.

5. Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue

This temple catches your eye as it features a mighty impressive all-white, giant Buddha statue. The Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue is one of the biggest Buddha statues in all of Sri Lanka, and as it sits on top of a hill, the views at this place are also amazing, especially if you climb the stairs located on the back of the Buddha. Visible from almost anywhere in town, standing in front of this 26-meter tall Buddha statues is quite imposing, indeed.

 

 

Written by Stephanie of Villa-Finder.com