Kandy, the cultural capital of Sri Lanka is a haven for seekers of tranquillity and spirituality. Travellers visit Kandy, either as a part of the ‘Cultural Triangle’ or as an individual destination, to slow down after they’ve tasted chaos in Colombo, the bustling capital of Sri Lanka. Home to several ancient temples, nature parks, and natural landscapes, Kandy is where one can see remnants of Sri Lanka of yesteryear as well as the parts of what constitutes the heritage of this teardrop-shaped island.
Looking for top things to do in Kandy? Our list might be able to help:
Visit the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
Meeting with the giant Asian elephants is the highlight of their Sri Lanka trip for many tourists and there’s no better place than the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage to accomplish the goal. Now home and breeding ground to over 90 elephants; the orphanage started off by saving, protecting and providing for five abandoned baby elephants. The visitors to the orphanage remain very excited to see the star elephants here called Sumana, Mathali and Kumari, three of the oldest residents of the orphanage.
Pay Homage at the Temple of Tooth Relic
The tooth relic temple, home to a tooth of Buddha, an important Buddhist relic is a star attraction in Kandy. However, tourists looking to have a glimpse of the scared tooth should ensure that they visit during the hours of Puja (prayer). Even then, it is not that you will get to see the actual tooth as it is kept in a series of six gold caskets, one within another. There are several other smaller temples in the complex as well as the Royal Palace in its vicinity that can be explored by inquisitive tourists.
Get Charmed by the Kandy Lake
The nucleus of tourist activity, the artificial Kandy Lake is a great place for a leisurely stroll in Kandy. A number of restaurants, cafes and eateries are situated around the lake and one could spend hours drinking coffee or tea and enjoying the stunning view of the lake from these eateries. For those who would like to see the lake more closely, boat riding trips across the lake are available. The lake is a great place for tortoise spotting as well. Besides, an array of significant pieces of architecture can be found around the lake, including the aforementioned Temple of Tooth Relic.
Give a Treat to Your Sense of Smell at Ranweli Spice Garden
Get to know the spices that go behind the cooking of the sumptuous Sri Lankan fare at the Ranweli Spice Garden. All your senses will come alive as you walk through the garden, looking at exquisite variety of plants including Turmeric, Peppercorns, Cloves, Cardamom, Vanilla, Cinnamon, Cocoa, and Aloe Vera. Through a guided trip of the garden, you can learn about the process of plantation, cultivation and distribution of these spices. A peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city, the spice garden will have a special appeal for nature lovers.
Watch a Kandyan Dance Performance
Delve deeper into the discovery of the Sri Lanka’s great art and culture by witnessing a flamboyant and boisterous Kandyan dance performance at the Kandyan Art Association Hall. Through a series of acrobatics and dance movements accompanied by high-octane playing of drums, the dancers highlight various aspects of Sri Lanka’s art and life. A fire walking ritual towards the end of the performance gets the crowds very excited.