Top 20 Places To Visit In Kandy

Kandy Sri Lanka


Nestled amidst misty hills in central Sri Lanka, Kandy is a cultural gem steeped in history and natural beauty. Home to the revered Temple of the Tooth Relic, it offers a captivating blend of ancient traditions and colonial charm. Wander through lush botanical gardens, stroll along the serene Kandy Lake, and immerse yourself in vibrant markets bustling with life. With its rich heritage, picturesque landscapes, and warm hospitality, Kandy invites travelers to explore its enchanting streets and discover the essence of Sri Lankan culture.

1. Temple of the Tooth Relic (Sri Dalada Maligawa)

The Temple of the Tooth in Kandy

The Temple of the Tooth Relic, also known as Sri Dalada Maligawa, is one of the most sacred Buddhist sites in the world. It houses the tooth relic of Lord Buddha and is a significant pilgrimage site for Buddhists. The temple is known for its stunning architecture and intricate carvings. Visitors can witness the daily rituals and ceremonies performed by the monks, which adds to the spiritual experience.

Read More About The Temple of the Tooth Relic

2. Peradeniya Botanical Gardens

Peradeniya Botanical Gardens

The Peradeniya Botanical Gardens is a paradise for nature lovers. Spread over 147 acres, it is home to a vast collection of plants, including orchids, palm trees, and medicinal plants. The gardens also feature a beautiful avenue of royal palms, a giant Javan fig tree, and a stunning orchid house. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll through the gardens, enjoy a picnic, or even take a boat ride on the nearby Mahaweli River.

Read More About Peradeniya Botanical Gardens

3. Kandy Lake (Kiri Muhuda)

Kandy Lake, also known as Kiri Muhuda, is a picturesque lake located in the heart of the city. It was built by King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe in 1807 and is surrounded by lush greenery. Visitors can take a leisurely walk along the lake’s perimeter, enjoy the scenic views, and even spot various species of birds. The lake is especially beautiful during the evening when the lights from the surrounding buildings reflect on its calm waters.

4. Udawatta Kele Sanctuary

Udawatta Kele Sanctuary

The Udawatta Kele Sanctuary is a peaceful forest reserve located behind the Temple of the Tooth Relic. It is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including monkeys, deer, and various bird species. Visitors can explore the sanctuary through well-maintained walking trails and enjoy the tranquility of nature. The sanctuary also offers panoramic views of the city, making it a popular spot for nature enthusiasts and photographers.

5. Royal Palace of Kandy (Maha Wasala)

Royal Palace of Kandy (Maha Wasala)

The Royal Palace of Kandy, also known as Maha Wasala, was the residence of the last king of Sri Lanka. Although most of the palace was destroyed during the British colonial period, a few structures still remain. Visitors can explore the Audience Hall, the Queen’s Palace, and the Royal Bathing Pavilion, which provide a glimpse into the grandeur of the past. The palace complex also offers stunning views of the surrounding hills and the city.

6. British Garrison Cemetery

British Garrison Cemetery

The British Garrison Cemetery is a historic cemetery that dates back to the British colonial period. It is the final resting place of many British soldiers and civilians who lived in Kandy during that time. The cemetery is known for its well-preserved tombstones and beautiful surroundings. Visitors can take a peaceful walk through the cemetery and learn about the history of the British presence in Kandy.

7. Embekka Devalaya

Embekka Devalaya

Embekka Devalaya is a unique temple known for its intricate wood carvings. It was built in the 14th century and is dedicated to the worship of the deity Kataragama. The temple’s main attraction is its wooden pillars, which are adorned with detailed carvings depicting various mythological figures and animals. Visitors can marvel at the craftsmanship of the ancient artisans and learn about the cultural significance of the temple.

8. Gadaladeniya Vihara

Gadaladeniya Vihara

Gadaladeniya Vihara is a Buddhist temple located on a hilltop, offering panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. It was built in the 14th century and is known for its unique architectural style, which combines South Indian and Sinhalese influences. The temple houses a beautiful Buddha statue and a library that contains ancient scriptures. Visitors can explore the temple grounds and enjoy the serene atmosphere.

9. Lankatilaka Temple

Lankatilaka Temple

Lankatilaka Temple is another ancient Buddhist temple that showcases remarkable architecture. It was built in the 14th century and is known for its towering image house and intricate carvings. The temple is dedicated to Lord Buddha and offers a peaceful environment for meditation and reflection. Visitors can admire the beautiful frescoes and sculptures that adorn the temple walls.

10. Hindagala Cave

Hindagala Cave

Hindagala Cave is a hidden gem located on the outskirts of Kandy. It is a natural cave formation that offers a unique experience for adventurous travelers. Visitors can explore the cave’s dark chambers, stalactites, and stalagmites, and even spot bats hanging from the ceiling. The cave is also believed to have been used as a meditation retreat by Buddhist monks in ancient times.

11. Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue

Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue

The Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue is a towering white statue of Lord Buddha that overlooks the city of Kandy. It stands at a height of 88 feet and is one of the tallest Buddha statues in Sri Lanka. Visitors can climb to the top of the statue and enjoy panoramic views of the city and the surrounding hills. The statue is especially breathtaking during sunset when the golden rays illuminate its serene face.

12. Kandy View Point

Kandy View Point

Kandy View Point is a popular spot for tourists to enjoy panoramic views of the city. It is located on top of a hill and offers breathtaking vistas of Kandy Lake, the Temple of the Tooth Relic, and the surrounding mountains. Visitors can relax on the benches provided and soak in the beauty of the cityscape. The view is particularly stunning during the evening when the city lights up.

13. Tea Museum

Tea Museum

The Tea Museum in Kandy provides a fascinating insight into the history and production of Sri Lanka’s famous Ceylon tea. Housed in an old tea factory, the museum showcases antique tea-processing machinery, photographs, and exhibits that depict the tea-making process. Visitors can learn about the different types of tea, participate in tea-tasting sessions, and even purchase high-quality tea leaves to take home as souvenirs.

14. Hanthana Mountain Range

Hanthana Mountain Range

The Hanthana Mountain Range is a paradise for hikers and nature enthusiasts. Located just outside Kandy, it offers several hiking trails that lead to breathtaking viewpoints and waterfalls. The mountain range is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including endemic bird species and rare orchids. Visitors can enjoy a day of trekking, birdwatching, and picnicking amidst the lush greenery.

15. Kandy Cultural Centre

Kandy Cultural Centre

The Kandy Cultural Centre is a vibrant and lively hub of cultural activities located in the heart of Kandy, Sri Lanka. This center is dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich cultural heritage of the city, offering visitors a glimpse into the traditional arts, music, and dance forms that have been passed down through generations. The center hosts regular performances by talented local artists, showcasing the diverse cultural traditions of Kandy. From mesmerizing Kandyan dance recitals to soul-stirring traditional music concerts, the Kandy Cultural Centre provides a platform for artists to showcase their talents and for tourists to immerse themselves in the vibrant cultural tapestry of the city. It is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in exploring the rich cultural heritage of Kandy.

16. Knuckles Mountain Range

Knuckles Mountain Range

The Knuckles Mountain Range, located in central Sri Lanka, is a breathtaking natural wonder that offers a unique and adventurous experience for nature enthusiasts. With its jagged peaks, lush vegetation, cascading waterfalls, and abundant wildlife, this mountain range is a paradise for hikers and explorers. The Knuckles Mountain Range is not only a visual treat but also a cultural treasure, as it is home to several remote villages where traditional ways of life have been preserved. The range’s diverse flora and fauna, including endemic species, add to its ecological significance. Whether it is trekking through challenging trails, camping under the starry sky, or simply immersing oneself in the tranquil beauty of this mountain range, the Knuckles Mountain Range is a destination that promises an unforgettable experience for nature lovers.

17. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is an incredible sanctuary located in Sri Lanka that has been dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of orphaned elephants. Established in 1975, the orphanage provides a safe haven for these majestic creatures and has successfully reintegrated many back into the wild. Visitors to Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage can witness firsthand the exceptional care and love that the elephants receive from the dedicated staff. The daily bathing ritual of the elephants in the nearby river is a truly mesmerizing sight, allowing visitors to observe these gentle giants in their natural element. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is not only a popular tourist attraction but also a testament to the importance of conservation and the preservation of these magnificent animals.

18. Ambuluwawa Tower

Ambuluwawa Tower

Ambuluwawa Tower, located in Gampola, Sri Lanka, is a magnificent architectural masterpiece that stands tall amidst the lush greenery of the Ambuluwawa mountain. This iconic tower serves as a symbol of unity and diversity, as it combines elements from various religious and cultural traditions. Rising to a height of 48 meters, the Ambuluwawa Tower offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the surrounding landscape, including mist-covered mountains, rolling hills, and cascading waterfalls. Visitors can explore the tower’s intricate design, which features a blend of Buddhist, Hindu, Islamic, and Christian motifs. With its serene atmosphere and stunning vistas, Ambuluwawa Tower is not only a popular tourist attraction but also a place of spiritual significance, fostering a sense of harmony and peace among all who visit.

19. Kandy Municipal Central Market

Kandy Municipal Central Market

Kandy Municipal Central Market is a bustling hub of activity located in the heart of Kandy, Sri Lanka. This market has been a prominent landmark in the city for decades, serving as a gathering place for locals and tourists alike. The market is known for its vibrant atmosphere, with vendors selling a wide array of products including fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, clothing, handicrafts, and traditional Sri Lankan food. The narrow alleys of the market are filled with the sounds of bargaining, the smells of exotic spices, and the vibrant colors of the merchandise on display. It is a sensory overload that truly captures the essence of the local culture. The Kandy Municipal Central Market is not just a place to shop, but also a cultural experience that showcases the diversity and vibrancy of the city.

20. Ranawana Purana Rajamaha Viharaya

Ranawana Purana Rajamaha Viharaya

Ranawana Purana Rajamaha Viharaya is a historic Buddhist temple located in the Kandy district of Sri Lanka. This ancient temple holds great significance as it is believed to have been built during the reign of King Parakramabahu II in the 13th century. The temple is known for its stunning architecture and intricate artwork, showcasing the rich cultural heritage of Sri Lanka. The main shrine of the temple houses a sacred tooth relic, which is a revered symbol of Buddhism. Visitors can explore the tranquil surroundings of the temple, adorned with lush greenery and serene ponds. Ranawana Purana Rajamaha Viharaya offers a peaceful sanctuary for spiritual reflection and is a popular pilgrimage site for both locals and tourists alike.

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