The Sri Lanka Travel Specialists
The bustling hill-country capital of Kandy is the gateway to Sri Lanka's breathtaking mountain scenery. But there are plenty of activities in Kandy to enjoy before you head further into the hills. The town’s temperate climate, rich history and has made it a favourite haunt for travellers.
A visit to the Temple of the Tooth has long been acknowledged as one of the most unmissable experiences in Kandy. Tradition tells that a sacred tooth relic of the Lord Buddha was brought to Sri Lanka in 4th century A.D. and was enshrined within the Temple, a striking building with a golden roof.
In August each year, the spectacular Esala Perehara – one of the finest festivals in Asia - enlivens the streets of Kandy. For ten nights under the moonlit sky, Kandy dazzles. Musicians, dancers, Kandyan chieftains and hundreds of finely-dressed elephants move to the rhythm of the Kandyan drums. Reels of white carpet are laid on the roads for one special elephant, the temple tusker that bears the tooth relic of Lord Buddha encased in a golden casket.
If you are not in Kandy during the Perehara, take the chance to see a Kandyan dance show. These high-energy, spectacular theatrical dances take place to the sound of beating drums and involve the wearing of traditional masks or elaborate costumes.
Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens is the largest botanical garden of Sri Lanka and the finest in Asia. Why not explore these gardens with the help of an expert who can bring the experience to life? An activity in Kandy cherished by many.
Kandy's war cemetery, which honours more than 200 people from many nations who died in the Second Worlds War, is a meaningful place for many. It is in a very serene spot and immaculately maintained by the War Graves Commission.
Explore Kandy with the help of a guided walk, tailored to your specific interests. This activity can be anywhere between thirty minutes and two hours.
Sri Lanka has long been known for its spices, which Sri Lankan people use liberally in their dishes. Be warned that rip-off trips are not uncommon. We recommend a visit to a spice garden in Matale to see how some of them are grown and processed.
Beyond Kandy, there are also great things to do. The Victoria Golf & Country Resort is one of the most beautiful golf courses in Asia. Kandy also has a fine international cricket stadium, Pallakele, which stages both one-day matches and Test cricket.
Red Dot can also offer either a day-trip to the Knuckles area where hill-country walking is at its finest. More serious walkers might also like to look at our specialist walking holiday.