Kandy in Sri Lanka is the country’s last glorious kingdom. Many days, Kandy’s skies seem endlessly bruised, with a dense fog sticking to the hills overlooking the city’s beautiful centerpiece pool. Gentle hill-country breezes lighten the fog softly, exposing vibrant houses in the middle of Kandy’s surprising forested halo. In the center of town, the three-wheelers graze around slippery edges, raising a soft spray that threatens the silk saris worn by local women. Here’s a town that looks amazing even though it’s raining.
Then when the drizzle fades away, the cobalt blue skies expose a city of majestic colonial-era then Kandyan architecture, none more spectacular than the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, one of the most important temples in Buddhism.
History and culture are all on the tap. Yeah, Kandy in Sri Lanka is famed for the great festival of Kandy Esala Perahera (held annually in July/August), but its lively cultural life and attractions are more than a visit at any time of year.
The Best Places to Visit in Kandy:
Here’s a quick list of the famous tourist attractions in Kandy before we get to it in detail:
- Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic
- Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
- Kandy Lake
- Peradeniya Botanical Gardens
- Ceylon Tea Museum
- Kandy Garrison Cemetery
- National Museum
- World Buddhism Museum
- St Paul’s Church
- Udawatta Kele Sanctuary
- Bahirawakanda Temple
- Giragama Tea Plantation/Factory
- Spice Garden
- Whales Park
- Pallekele Cricket Stadium
- Kandy Viewpoint
The best tourist places to visit in Kandy are among world-famous tourist places. Alright, let’s get to all the places in detail now:
01. Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic:
The Golden Temple of the Sacred Tooth is home to Sri Lanka’s most significant Buddhist relic – the Lord Buddha’s tooth. And during puja (offerings or prayers), a heavily secured room with the sacred tooth is open to worshippers and tourists. You don’t really see a tooth, however. It is contained in a gold casket designed like a dagoba (stupa) holding a collection of six smaller dagoba caskets.
As well as the famous central temple, the site contains several smaller temples, shrines, and galleries. Self-employed guides will offer their services around the whole temple complex for around Rs 600, and free audio guides will be available at the ticket counter. The elevator allows mobility for elderly travelers.
The complex can be busy, as many worshippers and visitors, as well as travelers, Chinese tour groups, and Thai monks, all flock to it. Wear clothing to cover your legs and feet, and take off your shoes.
02. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage:
This is one of the best places to visit in Kandy for those who love wildlife. It’s a popular breeding place of 90 plus elephants who stay in their natural environment. Watch these cute elephants bathe, lounge about, etc.
Tourists will see them when they take a tour around the elephant orphanage to see the magnificent creatures. If you’re in Kandy to visit places, then this location is ideal if you want to have a little picnic with your family or friends.
In recent years, the location got modified into an impressive tourism destination. They treat the elephants pretty well, so you’re sure to see that when in this location. The orphanage also accepts elephants donated to them and brings them back to their health. Elephants have mahouts for them that offer them baths and proper food on a timely basis. If you’re hunting for natural swimming spots in Kandy, this is it!
Pinnawala is the location where orphan elephants are being raised. Not only orphans but also elephants who are critically injured or others who get away from their party receive adequate protection and treatment in the orphanage. It is in the village of Pinnawala in the Sabaragamuwa province of Sri Lanka. The orphanage began in 1975 by the Department of Wildlife Conservation of Sri Lanka. The main attraction of Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage: events such as milk feeding, fruit feeding, and elephant bathing.
03. Kandy Lake:
The center of the beautiful town is a lake. A relaxing stroll around it, with a few halts on the lakefront seats, is an enjoyable way to spend a few hours.
The field surrounding the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic is the nicest place to stroll around. If you are wondering what to visit in Kandy; here’s a top pick for you.
The lake is artificial and king Sri Wickrama Rajasinha built it in 1807, the last ruler of the Kandy kingdom. The center island was the personal harem of Sri Wickrama Rajasinha. Later, the British used it as a guns and ammo store, adding a fortress-style parapet around the boundary. The circular structure is the monks’ bathhouse on the south coast, in front of the Malwatte Maha Vihara. The central lake is one of the best places to visit in Kandy.
04. Peradeniya Botanical Gardens:
These beautiful gardens were once reserved exclusively for the rulers of Kandyan. Today, even the common people can enjoy the biggest and most spectacular (60 hectares) botanical gardens in Sri Lanka.
Highlights include a splendid array of orchids, a magnificent avenue of royal palms, an impressive, appropriately called cannonball fruit tree, and 40m-high Burma bamboo. Another big hit is the gigantic Javan fig tree on the huge lawn, with its gigantic main trunk and a parasol-like canopy of branches. Peradeniya is 6 km from the middle of Kandy in Sri Lanka.
You’ll share the gardens with thousands of wing-flapping fruit bats, hundreds of monkeys, etc. Peradeniya Botanical Gardens is one of the most-visited places in Kandy.
05. Ceylon Tea Museum:
This museum houses the 1925 Hantana Tea Factory, 4km south of Kandy, on the Hantane route. Deserted for about a decade, a renovation project took place, and the factory has strong exhibits of tea legends James Taylor and Thomas Lipton plus plenty of antique tea-processing memorabilia.
A short tour (all guides are professional, but you sense some walking through the movements.) And there’s a free cuppa in the top floor tearoom. It’s going to be a new experience. We rate this as one of the best places to go in Kandy.
06. Kandy Garrison Cemetery:
This well-maintained graveyard includes 163 graves from the colonial era. Maybe the most notable characteristic of a visit here is to learn how young the majority of people were when they died – if you made it to 40, you were of a very mature age.
Some of the deaths were because of sunstroke, elephants, or jungle fever. You’ll probably be shown around by a reasonably educated caretaker who once guided Prince Charles of the United Kingdom here, and who does seem to have a story for every tomb. Listening to his stories reveals much about what did happen in the past. The Garrison Cemetery is one of the best places to visit in Kandy.
One of the displays is a copy of the 1815 agreement that handed over the Kandyan provinces to British rule. This document announces a major reason for the event: the cruelties and oppressions of the Malabar ruler.
Sri Wickrama Rajasinha was declared by the habitual violation of the chief and most sacred duties of a sovereign, to be fallen and deposed from the office of the king, and dominion of the Kandyan provinces was vested in the British Empire.
The museum, along with four devales (complexes for worshipping deities) and two monasteries – but not the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic itself – make up one of Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle sites. This is undoubtedly one of the places to visit in Kandy.
08. World Buddhism Museum:
The World Buddhism Museum is inside the former High Court buildings and contains many photographs, models, and displays highlighting Buddhism around the world. Notice that a substantial number of sculptures and other objects are, in fact, replicas. The museum is inside the Sanctuary of the Sacred Tooth Relic complex to reach via the temple.
09. St Paul’s Church:
The construction of this magnificent Colonial-era Red-Brick church started in 1843 and finished five years later. Designed in a neo-Gothic style, it primarily opened as a garrison church for local British soldiers.
10. Udawatta Kele Sanctuary:
This forest on the north side of Kandy Lake has blooming hardwood trees and giant bamboo, healthy birding, and plenty of wild monkeys. Birdwatchers can buy a guide (Rs 500 – subject to change) at the ticket office. There are two primary roads you can take, and there are also smaller routes.
Enter by turning right after the DS Senanayake Vidiya post office. First tickets released at 4:30 p.m. This is one of the best places to visit in Kandy for nature and bird lovers.
11. Bahirawakanda Temple:
The Bahirawakanda Temple is a popular draw and a unique architecture. The place is a popular tourist destination for Buddhists, and there are several international Buddhist relations meetings taking place here. It makes it one of the most famous attractions to see in Kandy.
The majestic design is massive and you can see it from everywhere in the city. The location is also a significant monastery where many Buddhist events occur. The statue began in 1972 and finished in 1993. You can take the stairs to get to the bottom of the cliff, or you can take a tuk-tuk trip to the temple complex.
If you’re traveling in Kandy, don’t miss this architectural marvel when you’re in town. Visitors can probably see the Buddha statue from all over the area, but it’s a sight to see and see the beauty in an up-and-coming way. It takes around 200 LKR to reach this monument. If you’re visiting Kandy in August, make sure you add it to your itinerary.
The key attractions of the Bahirawakanda Temple: an impressive view of the city from the statue, making it one of the best places to see in Kandy.
12. Giragama Tea Plantation/Factory:
Yes, we know that tea plantations are common in beautiful Sri Lanka. Kandy is a city where you can see more than enough tea plantations, and one of the best tourist places to visit in Kandy is Giragama tea plantations.
Giragarama is a nice little town in Kandy, renowned for its tea plantations. It provides much-needed harmony and peacefulness, along with the stunning scenery that will rock your soul. There are tea estates where you can stroll and admire the views. Hold this in your list of sites you need to visit in Kandy for a relaxing experience.
13. Spice Garden:
It’s time to spot greenery and splendid varieties of plants in their natural environment. This tourist attraction of Kandy is near Peradeniya Royal Botanical Garden. Turmeric, Peppercorns, Vanilla, Cinnamon, Cocoa Cloves, Cardamom, and Aloe Vera are the primary plants of this place.
Visiting this spice garden is one of the best things to do for lovebirds in Kandy. Ranweli Spice Garden’s major attraction: the Peradeniya Botanical Garden Suspension Bridge.
Know about trees, spices, organic products, and the different methods used in growing them. The Ranweli Spice Garden is the great getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life. Vibrant legacy and lots of surprises are waiting for you in the Spice Garden.
14. Whales Park:
The Wales Park or Royal Park is famous for its breathtaking nature, and the spectacular view of Kandy Lake makes this spot very unique. Main Attraction: The Japanese War field conquered by the British under Lord Mountbatten.
For visitors, this location is a magnet because of the elegance and pleasure that people will experience under the umbrella of Nature. This park is properly considered to be one of the most spectacular places to visit in Kandy.
15.Pallekele Cricket Stadium:
This stadium is one of the most popular places in Kandy. Muttiah Muralitharan International Cricket Stadium is another name for this stadium, since July 2010.
This stadium and the Hambantota International Cricket Stadium were two main cricket stadiums for the 2011 World Cup. The launch took place on 27 November 2009 and has even become the 104th test site in the world. For all cricket fans out there, this is certainly going to be among the best places to visit in Kandy.
16. Kandy Viewpoint:
Kandy is the core of the pearl of the Indian Ocean and watching the picturesque hill location from the upper edge is not something everyone enjoys, so don’t miss out on discovering the most beautiful places to visit in Kandy on your vacation.
The point of view is at a distance of 1.7 km from the central city and the viewpoint is equally enthralling. Take your camera along for some fabulous pictures at this location, which is one of the best places to visit in Kandy.
Images by Google – Credit to original owners