An Interesting Kandy Itinerary
Kandy is the cultural capital of Sri Lanka, situated in the central highlands of the country. It is indeed the second largest city in Sri Lanka and the weather here is slightly colder than in Colombo. An ideal Kandy itinerary would include some of the best things to do in Kandy such as visiting the Temple of the Tooth, the Kandy Lake and the Elephant Orphanage. Due to its location, scenic greenery views are available from almost any location in Kandy. If you are keen on exploring the natural beauty and learning about the culture of Sri Lanka, Kandy should be on your list of places to visit in Sri Lanka. View a range of Sri Lanka Itineraries available here.
An ideal itinerary for your stay in Kandy would be as follows…
Day 1 – Visit to Dalada Maligawa (Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic)
The striking golden canopy on the outside of this Temple can be seen from far away and is what often attracts one to this popular destination. From the outside, one golden canopy amidst plain white walls is what you can see. The interior is even more stunning with richly carved and well decorated walls and ceilings. Inlaid woods, ivory and lacquer give an exceptional finishing touch to the interior. The Tooth Relic is preserved in a two-story inner shrine protected by two large elephant tusks. Seated on a throne, a gold lotus flower proudly holds the relic.
The temple is connected to an Octagon tower built in the early 19th century. This building was once a prison but now keeps a collection of palm-leaf manuscripts that tells the tale of Sri Lankan history. Also in the Temple compound is the King’s palace. There is a lot to learn about the culture and history of Sri Lanka during your visit to the Dalada Maligawa.
The best time to visit the Temple is in the early morning at about 7.00a.m because this is when the prayers takes place and you get to observe the Buddhist rituals as they are being carried out.
The best part about this attraction is that you can fit it into your Kandy itinerary regardless of which time of the year you plan your holiday in Sri Lanka.
See Also : Best time to Visit Kandy
There are no particular season times as this is a religious place and does not remain closed any time of the year.
Find out more about the Temple of the tooth.
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
Once you are done with your early morning visit to the Temple, drive to the elephant orphanage in Pinnawela, a town close to Kandy. The Pinnawala elephant orphanage houses elephants that were once abandoned and wounded in the jungles. Currently the orphanage caters to about 65-70 elephants brought in from various parts of the country. The daily feeding time for elephants is from 9.30-10.00am and 1.30-2.00p.m. In addition to that, the bathing of elephants happens from 10.00-10.30a.m and 2.00-2.30p.m. Time your arrival to the orphanage accordingly so you get to see the feeding and bathing sessions; an experience that should not be missed. You also get to mingle with the elephants personally, hence for animal lovers a visit to the orphanage is one of the best things to do in Kandy.
Stroll around the Kandy Lake
Later that evening, you can take a stroll around the Kandy Lake, a lovely centerpiece of the town. During your stroll observe the busy happenings of typical Kandyan life. Boat rides are available on the Kandy Lake as a relaxing leisure activity for tourists.
Day 2 – Royal Botanical Gardens
The Royal Botanical Gardens are one of the best places to visit in Kandy. Begin day two with a drive to Peradeniya, a town just 4 kms from Kandy, which is home to a gigantic garden full of flowers, plants, giant trees and beautiful landscapes of picnic areas. The history of these botanical gardens dates back to the ancient Kings of Sri Lanka but has been altered during the British rule. Measuring a massive 60 hectares of land, this is the largest botanical garden in Sri Lanka. Some of the main attractions here are the orchid house, the large banyan tree, the giant Javan fig tree, an avenue of royal palms, the suspension bridge and the many bats flying around.
The park can get quite crowded on weekends and holidays with romantically inclined local visitors. A cafeteria is available but you are also allowed to carry your own picnic material. It is better to visit the gardens in the morning hours in order to avoid the rain, particularly if you are in Kandy during the rainy season.
See Also : Places to Visit in Kandy
Hantana Tea Museum
Later that evening you can schedule a visit to the nearby Hantana tea museum in your Kandy itinerary where you can learn about the tea manufacturing process. It was the British who first discovered that tea grows well in Sri Lanka and today, tea is a vital source of income for country. This museum was an ancient tea factory which is now converted into a museum solely dedicated to the history of tea in Sri Lanka.
This is an annual Buddhist festival celebrated in Kandy. A grand procession takes place every year (in July or August) in which you can see the brilliant display of talents such as stilt walkers, fire dancers, kandyan dancers, whip crackers, drummers and much more. A casket replicating the Sacred Tooth Relic is carried on an elegantly decorated elephant as part of the procession. Citizens from all over the country come to see this festival and tourists in particular time their holidays in line with this ten day long festival. If you want to witness this awe-inspiring procession, visit Sri Lanka during July or August and you will be lucky to have experienced it in your Kandy itinerary.
Related articles to Kandy Perahera :
- Guide to Kandy Perahera
- 5 Interesting Facts about Kandy Perahera
- 5 Best Places to Visit in Kandy during Kandy Perahera Season
How plan the perfect Kandy Itinerary?
So as you can see there are several popular places to visit in Kandy and hence don’t forget to include this wonderful city in your Sri Lanka itinerary. Our team at Sri Lanka Holiday Ideas can assist you in preparing an exciting itinerary for your holiday by including the best places to visit in Sri Lanka. We will arrange transport and accommodation for you to get around and make the most of your holiday.
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