Kandy is approximately four hours by road from Colombo and is a favourite destination for the first time visitors to Sri Lanka. In the first place, do you know Kandy has much more attractions other than the famed Sacred Tooth Relic? As a matter of fact, the city is such a big draw as it has stayed culturally relevant, even today. In addition, there are many facets that embody the Kandyan resolve everywhere. These are amplified in every nook and corner of the city. From buildings, architecture, people or sport, the list is endless. Ultimately, these will form a tapestry of vivid insights which will linger on for years to come.
In order to fall in love at first sight, with this glorious city spend a few days at Yoho Kandy City Rest. From here you can discover many places to visit in Kandy. Moreover, there are many budget hotels in Kandy for you to get up close and personal with this historic city. Here are some must-see attractions that we hope you love as much as we do.
We love Kandyan Architecture
Even in the modern era, there are elements of age-old Kandyan architecture that adorns recently constructed buildings. From shopping malls, hotels to houses the design overtones in most instances have an intimate affinity with the cultural past. Moreover, traditional Kandyan architecture consists of temple structures, carvings on stone, wood, timber columns, murals adorned on walls etc. Likewise, a case in point is the roof structure of octagon “Paththirippuwa” which is replicated barring the original size, in many structures.
We adore the Udawatta Kele Sanctuary (Royal Forest)
The Sanctuary is located within a hilly area behind the Temple of the Tooth Relic. Uniquely, this forest is considered to be a vital bio-reserve. Furthermore, it helps the densely populated modern day Kandy city breath clean air. Thankfully, The forest is rich with vegetation and a good place to hike or trek. Additionally, there are important landmarks to see in the sanctuary. They are, the Water Pond, Highest peak “Kodimale”, The Senkanda Cave, and the Garrison Cemetery. In addition, there are also several Buddhist temples and hermitages inside the forest reserve.
We have a soft spot for the Commonwealth War Cemetery
If you think a cemetery is the most unlikely place you want to visit in Sri Lanka, then think again. Do you know this war cemetery was home to brave hearts who sacrificed their lives during the World War II? Interestingly, the lawns enveloping the cemetery are beautifully curated and maintained in pristine condition even today. Definitely, a heaven to feast your eyes on.
We are nuts about the Millenium Elephant Foundation (MMF), Kegalle
Approximately one hour drive from Kandy on the Colombo-Kandy road will get you to Randeniya, Hiriwadunna. Here you will find MMF managed by the Samarasinghe family. In fact, this foundation is dedicated to improving the welfare of domestic elephants throughout Sri Lanka. However, many visit this place to be surrounded by elephants and have close encounters with them. Further, riding on top of these tame elephants and walking side by side with them is an attraction in it’s itself.
We love the panoramic views from the Bahirawa Kanda
The Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue is located on top of this hill. The 88 feet high Buddha statue is something one should not miss while in Kandy. Consequently, the white statue can be seen from most parts of the city as it is strategically located on top of the Bahirawa Kanda (devil’s) hill. Without a doubt, this place showcases a breathtaking view of the entire Kandy town.
We are stuck on brass – The Brass Wear Village, Kalapura Road, Kandy
This artisans village is approximately 13 km from the Kandy town. Here, local craftsmen are seen creating various brass ornaments such as oil lamps, souvenirs, jewellery boxes and many other intricate ornaments made out of brass. In fact, on the same visit, you can also visit Gadaladeniya temple, Ammbackke and Lankathilaka temples as they are in the same area.
We go nuts on Kamatha Lunch, Cashew Nuts and Cane Craft
While in Kandy enjoy a traditional Sri Lankan lunch at a “Kamatha” (harvesting field) which is served right in the middle of a paddy field. Enroute to Kandy see beautiful Sri Lankan village damsels selling cashew nuts by the roadside at Kadju Gama (village). Also, you can stop briefly at Weweldeniya to see household items and ornaments being made by using Cane as the main raw material.