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Kandy,Central - Srilanka
Kandy is a city in the center of Sri Lanka. It was the last capital of the ancient kings' era of Sri Lanka. The city lies in the midst of hills in the Kandy plateau, which crosses an area of tropical plantations, mainly tea. Kandy is one of the most scenic cities in Sri Lanka; it is both an administrative and religious city. It is the capital of the Central Province (which encompasses the districts of Kandy, Matale and Nuwara Eliya) and also of Kandy District. Kandy is the home of The Temple of the Tooth Relic (Sri Dalada Maligawa) one of the most venerable places for the Buddhist community of Sri Lanka and all around the world. It was declared a world heritage by the UNESCO in 1988.
Intercity express train are hassle free and scenic. Reservation are needed for these trains, it can be done just before the departure depending on the period but is best done in advance especially if you are traveling on a weekend or holiday. There is a great observation saloon (first class) in this particular train. Other trains are overly crowded and late. The trip from Colombo to Kandy costs 220 LKR in second class.
If you're just arriving in Sri Lanka, heading for Kandy, you can hire a taxi from one of the stalls in the arrivals hall at Colombo airport for The journey takes about 3 hours. This saves the hassle of going into Colombo, and is a lot quicker.
Take the shuttle bus to the bus terminal, where the friendly locals will direct you to the bus to Kandy (3.5h, 110 LKR as of March 2011).
The Temple of the Tooth
The temple is open from dawn to dusk. It houses a tooth relic of the Lord Buddha, and is consequently considered one of Sri Lanka's most holy shrines. Although you may not view the actual tooth itself, the casket within which it is said to be is displayed twice a day.
Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage
has about seventy semi-tame elephants roaming freely around this wonderful sanctuary. Feeding and bathing times are especially enjoyable. You can either hire a taxi to take you there or, if travelling on a budget, get a bus to Kegalle (about an hour away) for about R40/-, asking the driver to drop you off at the turn for Pinnewala which is 3 miles or so before you reach the town, and catch another local bus for the last 6 km or so. Definitely worth the trip especially if you have children.
Royal Botanical Garden in Peradeniya
is the best botanical garden in Sri Lanka and one of the best in the region. It dates back to the ancient kings of the country although the British changed the look of it. The British are said to have used the gardens to grow trees that could not be grown at Kew gardens. The large banyan tree, the orchid house, the suspension bridge, and the bats are some of the main attractions.
The ominipresent Buddha statue seen from everywhere in Kandy city. Take a tuk tuk ride to the Temple or walk, just 1 km away from the Kandy city. The way to the temple may not be easy to locate, you might have to take a three wheeler or ask a local, when in doubt just walk up and follow the colourful Buddhist flags over the road. Entrance fee 200 LKR. This Buddha statue is best viewed from far away.
The Tea Museum
Hantane, Kandy. The ancient Tea Factory of Hantana Estate is converted into a Museum dedicated to the history of Sri Lankan Tea. Run by the Sri Lanka Tea Board.
January - April
October - December
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