Tripin 2017 - 2018 - page 106

Distance from airport
: 105 km
Modes of transport
: Bus, train, car hire
Best time of year to visit
: All year
: Cultural
Pro Tip
: Alcohol may not be served
after 8pm in Kandy Town.
: When visiting the
Temple of the Toothmake sure to gowhen
the daily ceremonies are on. That’s 9:30-
10:30 am and again from 5:30-6:30 pm
Kandy was Sri Lanka’s final kingdom and the last independent stronghold of the Sinhalese. The
Kingdom of Kandy clung onto its freedom long after the rest of the island had fallen to the
Portuguese and then the Dutch. As a result Kandy was able to more deeply preserve its own
customs and culture, which live on today in the city’s unique music, dance form and distinct
architectural style. The city maintains a somewhat aristocratic air with a surprisingly small-town
atmosphere. Kandy is home to the sacred Temple of the Tooth, the country’s most important
Buddhist shrine and the Esala Perahera, its most exuberant festival. The ancient relic of Lord
Buddha’s tooth is paraded through the streets every August in an epic procession knows as the
Perehera. Bedazzled elephants parade with fire dancers, traditional drummers, and pageantry
unlike any other in the world. Needless to say if you find yourself in Kandy in August you’ll
not want to miss it. Kandyan dancing and drumming are considered to be Sri Lanka’s most
iconic performing arts and are key elements in the great Esala Perahera festival. There are daily
performances in the town center every evening for your viewing pleasure.
If you’re looking for more to do around town, check out the Udawatha Rainforest, which is
just behind the Temple of the Tooth and a great place for a trek. Other notable temples include
Embekke, Lankatilake and Gadaladeniya which are all in close proximity. The best way to visit,
however, is to walk at least part of the way between the three, starting at the Embekke Devale
and finishing at Gadaladeniya (or vice versa).
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