General information about Kandy
General information about Kandy
Kandy (Kandy Mahanuwara) – a city in Central Sri Lanka, capital of Central province and the cultural center of the country, the former ancient capital. Kandy is located 120 kilometers from Colombo and 100 km from the main Bandaranaike international airport, at an altitude of 500 meters above sea level (Kandy on the map). The population is slightly more than 160 000 people, which by local standards is considered a large city, it is sixth in terms of population in Sri Lanka.
Kandy was founded in the XIV century by king Vikramabahu III. In 1592, the city became the capital of the Kingdom of Kandy, then called the state, occupied the island. Then here was placed and the main relic – a tooth of Buddha is kept here and to this day, and is a place of attraction for tourists and pilgrims.
Stay in Kandy
Kandy is a high – altitude city located at an altitude of 500 meters above sea level, surrounded by mountains and hills, covered with green blankets of tea plantations. In 1988 included in the world heritage list of UNESCO, and since then has always attracted tourists. Included in the Cultural Triangle of Sri Lanka.
There are no beaches, the nearest Bank from here tens of kilometers. Stay in Kandy a very different plan – familiarity with the culture, attractions and natural beauty in the surrounding area. The majority of tourists visiting Kandy in the form of a one or two-day group excursions, often on route to other attractions of the island in the center of the country. For this trip you can see is that only the main attraction – the temple of the tooth relic (Sri Dalada Maligawa). But the culture of the city during such a visit, tourists are not fully recognized, and to feel the spirit of the cultural capital of the country, should be at least a few days. So if you will have the opportunity to come to Kandy alone for 2-3 days, and by exploring its attractions, take a leisurely walk through the city streets, markets, communicate with residents, visit a traditional dance performance, and walking on coals, you won't regret it. If you want to fully explore the Central region of the country, to make a trekking Hiking, do outdoor activities, to practice meditation, it will take at least a week.
Apart from Kandy, a very interesting attraction is the road itself to the city in the Central province of Sri Lanka. It passes through picturesque mountains covered with endless tea plantations and full of natural and architectural attractions. Kandy can also be a starting or intermediate point for visit to other tourist spots of the Central island, such as Nuwara Eliya, Ella, Horton plains, Adam's peak and others.
In our guide to Kandy, we have gathered all the necessary information that will allow you to arrange your own trip, learn all about the attractions, hotels, how to reach, transport and other issues for independent travel.
The tourist infrastructure in Kandy
Main tourist and recreational area in Kandy is situated around an artificial lake in the centre of the city. The main street where the infrastructure Dalada Vidaya.
Infrastructure for tourists in Kandy is well developed, but do not forget that this is not a resort area, and the city. There are plenty of hotels, excursions and traditional show, there are restaurants for tourists, but this is not on every corner.
Hotels in Kandy are a lot of problems with accommodation, although it is still better to look in advance and book the accommodation as there is no single street or tourist places of concentration of hotels, they are scattered throughout the city. Similar situation with travel agencies and tours: here you cannot walk down the street and go into a travel Agency every step of the way, so finding them can be difficult. Therefore, the distribution of tours and typical dancing performance most often occurs through the hotels. Read more about hotels Kandy here...
As for the food, then it is in Kandy, too, can be some difficulties. Here is a little café for tourists, and European food on the street almost impossible to find. Most tourists eat at the cafe at the hotels are not always cheap. Even if your hotel or Guesthouse does not house a restaurant, you can easily come to eat in another hotel. Here is a good restaurants for tourists: Kandy Muslim Hotel (Dalada Vidiya), Devon Restauraunt (Dalda Vidigya, 11), Bake House (36 Dalada Vidiya), Avanhala (Sangaraja Mawatha, North lake). Also to the North of the lake you can find KFC and Pizza Hut.
Major shopping centres in Kandy is not very much, but there is a very modern and one of the country's largest shopping center - Kandy City Centre, near the lake on the East. It is possible to find everything. The rest of the shop are mainly to the North-East of the lake, there you can find supermarkets with food. For tourists interest are the many shops with Souvenirs, Antiques, jewelry. In such shops, there is no shortage.
Weather in Kandy, seasons, when to go
Although by and large during sightseeing in Kandy is not very important or not its raining, its better to refrain from visiting the Central part of the rainy season, which peaks in October and November. The best time to visit Kandy – the dry season in January-March. At this time the rains are very rare, the sky is always clear, and the surrounding hills and mountains are not shrouded in fog.
The tourist seasons in Kandy for months*
* best time to visit;
appropriate time to visit;
not a recommended time to visit
Current weather in Kandy and forecast
Attractions in Kandy
Right in the heart of Kandy attractions not a lot to see, enough for one full day. The main attraction – the Temple of the tooth relic, for which here and goes most of the tourists. After the temple of the tooth you should look at the Anglican Church St. Paul's contrasting architecture and content with dozens of Buddhist temples around. Nearby is the national Museum and the cemetery of Harrison. Well, if you have the time, can walk in the Park Udawatta Kele Sanctuary which is a jungle in miniature in the center of the city. In the evening be sure to visit one of the traditional dance show.
A five minute drive from the centre there is the beautiful Botanical garden of Sri Lanka, Peradeniya. Also within the area need to visit the tea Museum, several magnificent and unique temples with a very ancient history.
As for entertainment in Kandy just a few of them, or rather, in the city for tourists at all. But you can go for trekking in the jungle, ride on a boat on the river, meditate, or take a trip to one of the two elephant camps. All this is offered by local travel agencies, but in the nurseries of elephants and you can go on their own. Evening entertainment in Kandy little, just a few bars, mostly along the main street Dalada Vidaya. But a great variety, besides that, everything closes early. Generally, after 10 hours almost the whole city goes to sleep, the streets became empty. Read more about the attractions and entertainment Kandy here...
How to get to Kandy
Most often, Kandy visit group tours. These tours are one-day, when the group are imported into the city for the day, familiar with the Temple of the tooth relic and the Royal Botanical gardens, Peradeniya. Also there are tours with an overnight stay and then tour free time for exploring the city. To purchase these trips at any resort of Sri Lanka.
But if you want to visit the city for a longer period, or just to go here one day with an overnight stay, no problem to get here from any point of Sri Lanka were not working. Come in Kandy by train, bus, taxi and even by plane. Read more about all the ways to get to Kandy here...
- Security. Kandy is not considered dangerous, but women travelling alone should be careful. There were several cases of single women tourists were abused during evening walks around the lake and through the Park Udawatta Kele Sanctuary.
- The Internet. With Internet access in Kandy no problems, every hotel has Wi-Fi. Also it has access to cafes and restaurants in the centre.
- Medicine. Hospital with English speaking staff – Lakeside Advertist Hospital at the southern tip of the lake.
- The exchange of money, ATMs. Exchange offices and banks with ATMs can be found on the street Dalada Vidiya and near her. By the way, the exchange rate is not very favorable, even lower than at the airport.
- Motorbike rental. We have been unable to find in Kandy rent a bike/motorbike to explore the area. But you can rent a motorbike in the popular resorts of Negombo, Hikkaduwa , etc., and to come here for it. If you know about the place in Kandy where you can rent a motorbike, can share this information in the comments.
- The scenic routes. If you plan from Kandy to go hand in Badulla (Nuwara Eliya, Ella), it is best to go by train as it is one of the most scenic routes in the world.
- Hotels in Kandy. Upon arrival at the bus/railway station, you attack the "helpers" that offers hotels and tours in town. Under all sorts of fraudulent pretexts, they will try to lure in hotels, where they will receive a Commission. Don't believe their word that the hotel in which they you're lucky, you'll be near the center, most often just the opposite. The best time to visit Kandy with already pre booked hotel.
- Alcoholic beverages in Kandy. Kandy is a sacred city for local residents, so there are strict restrictions on the use and sale of alcohol. He almost never served in restaurants and cafes, selling is completely prohibited during religious holidays. Buy alcohol only in a few specialized alkomarket (Wine shop) in the city centre.