One of the best Botanical Gardens in Asia; well-known for its ORCHID HOUSE and Avenue of Palms, and has a rich, long history (see website below).
The gardens are open all year, 8am to 5:30pm and easily reached by bus if you don't have a vehicle.
ADMISSION FEES: (Guideline; these may change)
Adults Rs. 800.00
Children (Between 5-12 Years) Rs. 300.00
Students Rs. 300.00
Tickets are valid only on the purchasing date.
Cars are not allowed; one must walk thru the gardens, which are very extensive. There are occasionally places to sit, as well as toilet facilities.
They also mention a cafeteria, but this may be hit or miss, as last time I was there, only a small, not very hospitable counter was open with almost nothing to sell. It may have improved.......but I would definitely take drinking water as well as a small snack if you are there over lunch hours.
This was taken outside the Temple of the Tooth,it is a genuine place of worship,the original dated from the16th century,though most of the present building and the octagon(which was badly damaged in the 1998 attack)were built in the early 19th century.It houses the buddahs tooth which you cant see its hidden in caskets inside the temple.
If you are in Kandy you must go and see the dancers,there are twelve different dances altogether,with different costumes for each dance,when they have finnished you move outside where you can see the fire walkers,where they walk barefoot across hot coals.
It's a temple which houses Sri Lanka's most important religious relic - the sacred tooth of Buddha. There are 3 daily ceremonies[6am, noon(I can't remember what time exactly), 6pm] of homage to the Tooth Relic, each attracting white-clad pilgrims carrying lotus blossoms and frangipani.
The relic is open for the public to see only once every 6 years. As you can see from the picture, there's a Chedi that covers the Relic. We Thai people are lucky enough to see this close.
Situated in the Hill capital Kandy. Visit to this garden will provide spectacles at extraordinary beauty and absorbing interest for any nature lover and casual visitor. 68 miles off-Colombo, 4 miles off Kandy this garden dates from 14th century reign of king Vikrama Bahu III. Peradeniya is well know for it's large variety of plants ornaments, useful machine and other creepers that produce the special spices at Sri Lanka. The great lawns highlight huge tropical trees and variety at bamboo can be found in one place.
Admission is 300 Rupees.
One of the chief objects of interests in Kandy is the 'Dalada Maligawa' or Temple of the Sacred Tooth. This is the heart of Kandy, and the Tooth of Buddha is the heart of it. The relic came from India sixteen centuries ago, and moved from capital to capital always with the king. It is rarely shown and never leaves the temple. The temple and the 'Pattirippuwa', which is the octagonal building on the right of the main entrance, are enclosed by an ornamental stone wall and a moat. Upon entering, you pass through a small quadrangle and turn to the right, up a flight of stone steps, to the temple. The most striking features that attract one's attention are the unusual carvings, brightly coloured frescoes representing torments for various classes of sinners, and many images of Lord Buddha. The flower-sellers are ranged on either side and the atmosphere is heavy with the perfume of the white blossoms. Yellow-robed priests flit here and there, whilst the music of the temple bells and the rhythmic beat of the tom-tom fill the air with strange melodies that harmonize with the nature of the city. At the entrance to the sanctuary which contains the Sacred Tooth is an elaborate door, inlaid with silver and ivory, with two pairs of elephants' tusks on either side. Within this chamber is the huge silver-gilt, bell-shaped shrine that protects the Tooth. Inside this shrine are six inner shrines ornamented with precious stones of rare value
The huge Temple of the Tooth, on the shore of the lake, is Kandy's centrepiece. It's probably the holiest site in the country and Sri Lankans flock to it in their thousands. The famous Buddha's tooth itself is housed upstairs in seven golden caskets placed inside a large silver one - it's fascinating to watch the reverence with which people queue for hours to see the tiny tooth on display.
As you'd expect there are lots of golden Buddha statues, as well as historical paintings chronicling Buddha's life and the origins of Buddhism in the country. Sri Lanka is one of those Buddhist countries, like Thailand, where everything is decorated in gold and as ostentatious as possible, but there are also some very ornate carvings and leafy trees in the shaded gardens.
Outside in the grounds, amid the strong smell of incense offerings, there's a wooden pillared audience hall and pleasant garden where elephants are kept. There are also performances of traditional Kandyan dancing and drumming during the day's Puja offerings, which is well worth seeing - check for the times.
The Octagon, or the 'Pattirippuwa' was built shortly before the Kandyan Convention of 1815, by which Kandy was ceded to the British. After being a British military prison, it is now a library, mainly for ancient "olas" - manuscripts on palm-leaves- many of which are magnificently bound and are held in due reverence by pilgrims as containing the teachings of Lord Buddha. The finest thing artistically is in the small shrine beside the stairway of the Octagon- a crystal statue of the Buddha in a most attractive shrine-case.
You must go and see the gardens,allow plenty of time as there is so much to look at,there are appox 147 acres,the biggest in Sri Lanka.If i went back the next day i would see completly different things its that big.
Just walking around the gardens and the grounds of the botanical gardens are breathtaking so much to look at so little time.Every time you turn a corner you get a completely different scenery.
My very favourite sight of Kandy is the one I discovered as I was about to leave: after days the sky finally cleared up and, on top of a nearby hill, this nice statue of a sitting buddha showed up. I wish I had known about it before... I wish I could have gone there. I don't know its name or how to get there, but it's a place I hope to visit one day. For the time being, I'm happy to have left Kandy with a really nice memory.
The Tooth Relic is housed in the upper storey of the temple,caged behind gilded iron bars is the larger outer casket,each made of silver,inside it are seven smaller caskets each made of gold studded jewels.
The Esala Perahera in Kandy is far and away the biggest and most important of all Sri Lankan perahera festivals. Held in the lunar month of Esala it celebrates the month in which Buddha was conceived and many years later left his family home. The Kandy festival has been held annually for many centuries and falls in July/August, lasting for ten days.
The 10 days are made up of torchlight processions of ornately decorated (and illuminated) elephants, Kandyan drummers and dancers, pilgrims, and all kinds of entertainers from acrobats to jugglers and stiltwalkers.The processions are watched by hundreds of thousands of people. For the first five days most of the celebrations take place within the temples; the next five are taken out into the streets. The highlight is the most famous elephant, the Maligawa Tusker, carrying the casket containing the Buddha's tooth relic around the temples. On the 11th day the relic is returned to the Temple of the Tooth in a final daylight procession.
Needless to say, Kandy is incredibly busy during Perahera! Book ahead or you might as well not bother coming - rooms are booked months in advance and prices treble at least. If you do get there, it's worth settling down somewhere hours in advance in order to get a good view. Dalada Veediya (the main street) and the northwest corner of the lake are probably the best and therefore busiest spots.
Kandy lake is basically the centre of the city. It was created by the last king of the Kandyan empire, who had his own private island full of concubines in the middle of the water. Legend has it that his political rivals were murdered and impaled on stakes at the bottom of the lake before it was filled with water.
The end closest to the town centre and near the Temple of the Tooth is usually very busy - it's a common meeting point and the pavements are full of salesmen and occasional street performers. The far end is much quieter and makes for a relaxing walk in the shade. To walk the whole way round is about 4kms. You can get boats from the jetty near the town end, but unfortunately you can't swim in the lake as it's sacred.
The lake is especially beautiful at night - on religious days and for the Perahera it's lit up with brightly coloured fairy lights. Surrounded by trees and hills the backdrop is dramatic - ideally get a hotel on the hill with a view of the lake. In Spring the flowers are in bloom and it's at its most colourful.
Many Kandyans would consider the temple to be the heart of the city. But to me it also sums up Kandy in another way – a lot of hype but it doesn’t quite live up to it. If you're a Buddhist then the significance of the Buddha's tooth means this is a must see temple. If you're not then there's not much to differentiate it from countless others - apart from a more expensive entrance fee (even more if you want to take a camera in) and extreme crowds. It is a lot larger and splendid than most though, and if you’ve never been to a Buddhist temple then this is a fantastic one to start with.
Outside in the entrance grounds, you're also hassled by would-be guides who will insist that they want to help you out of the goodness of their heart and their devotion to the Lord Buddha, look hurt if you suggest they want money, but then aggressively follow you around the city for the rest of the day if they don't get any.
The temple was bombed in 1998 and partly destroyed near the entrance. Understandably, security can be tight - bags searched etc - and it's best to arrive early to miss the queues that can develop when the coach tours turn up.