How to Plan the Best 3 Days Kandy City Tour?

Temple of the tooth also known as Dalada Maligawa is a historical site in the city of Kandy, Sri Lanka. This Buddhist temple is one of the most historical temples on the island, which dates back to the 1300s. Venturing on a Kandy city tour is the best way to visit the tooth relic temple as well as most other important tourist places in Kandy.

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What are the important places to visit on the Kandy city tour?

Visiting 17 [places in Kandy will be not easy because it involves a lot of travelling as well. In order to visit all these places, you need at least 3 days. If you venture on a Kandy 3 days Kandy city tour and have a p[rivate vehicle for transportation, you will be able to visit all these places. However, it is very important to base yourself in Kandy during the Kandy city tour.

  1. The Temple of the Tooth relic or Dalada Maligawa. …
  2. The Natha Devala. …
  3. Kandyan cultural show. …
  4. Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens. …
  5. Commonwealth War Cemetery. …
  6. Viewpoint Kandy. …
  7. Temple of the tooth relic museum. …
  8. Gadaladeniya temple
  9. Hantana mountain range
  10. Church of Wahakotte
  11. Buddhist temple Devanagala
  12. Ambuluwawa tower
  13. Udawattekele sanctuary
  14. Lankatilaka Temple
  15. Embekke temple
  16. Bogambara Cultural Park
  17. Visiting Tea factory

What are the places to include in the short Kandy city tour?

The places mentioned below can be included in a one-day Kandy city tour. One day Kandy city tour is a very popular activity among the travellers, especially very popular among foreign travellers. A large number of travellers venture on the Kandy city tour from Colombo or their beach resort on the west coast. Visiting these 7 places does not demand you to travel a lot because all of them are located within the city limit except the garrison cemetery. Garrison cemetery also can be reached from Kandy within a few minutes times.

  1. Temple of the Tooth Relic– The Temple of the Tooth Relic is the most important tourist attraction in Kandy. It houses the sacred tooth relic of Buddha. The tooth relic temple is located within the royal palace complex in Kandy.
  2. Kandy Lake – King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe, who was the last king of Sri Lanka, constructed the Kandy Lake in 1807. Kandy Lake is one of the most beautiful tourist attractions and enhances the attraction of the city. The lake is surrounded by trees and plants and harbours a large number of animal species like tortoises, monitors, monkeys and birds. It is and undoubtedly enhances the city’s beauty with the unique wall ‘Diyarali Bamma’ depicting ripples of water, surrounding it.
  3. Kandy arts and crafts centre – Kandy is the most popular for Sri Lankan traditional arts and crafts. Which is an integral part of Sri Lanka’s ancient cultural heritage. Kandy with many dozens of shops and stalls is one of the best places to buy traditional arts and crafts in Sri Lanka.
  4. Royal palace Kandy – The last king of Sri Lanka’s monarchy, King Sri Wickrama Rajasinhe, ruled the country from Kandy. The king lived in the palace until he was overthrown by the British in 1815.
  5. National Museum Kandy – The Kandy National Museum of Kandy opened in 1942. The museum is housed in an old building, which is located next to the sacred Temple of the Tooth. This museum showcases more than 5000 objects. The most important exhibit on display is king Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe’s golden crown and a copy of the 1815 treaty known as the ‘Kandyan Convention’ by which on March 2, 1815, Ceylon was ceded to the British ending 2,357 years of monarchy.
  6. Royal audience hall – The wooden structure built in traditional Sri Lankan style is also called ‘Magul Maduwa’. This structure is decorat5ed with various intricate wooden carvings. The king used the place to meet his minister and to carry out his daily administrative tasks.
  7. Garrison Cemetery – British Garrison Cemetery was established in 1817 just after the British captured Kandy and was closed in 1873 due to a ban on burials within the municipal limits. There are 195 graves of men, women and children and the majority of them are British nationals. The most common causes of death were tropical diseases such as malaria and cholera.

3 Days Kandy City Tour

Kandy sits in the central province of Sri Lanka at an elevation of 500 meters above sea level. Kandy is the city with the highest value with regard to the culture and tradition of Sinhalese. Therefore, most travellers on the island are not forgetting to jump into this beautiful city during the holiday in Sri Lanka.

Kandy is a part of most Sri Lanka tour itineraries along with other important tourist places in Sri Lanka. Sametime Kandy is a destination of most short tours such as one day tour to Kandy from Bentota, a Kandy-Nuwara Eliya tour, Kandy – Sigiriya tour from Colombo, a Kandy-Nuwara Eliya tour etc. We have formulated below Kandy City Tour for travellers, who wish to explore the attractions in Kandy and the surrounding area.

It was the last kingdom of the Sri Lankan monarch. This majestic city offers interesting natural beauty and traditional heritage to explore. It has spectacular mountains, beautiful lakes and valleys. Boasting a rich heritage, Kandy is full of surprises for travellers looking for natural, religious and cultural attractions in Sri Lanka.

Kandy is undoubtedly one of the perfect places to have a holiday with peace of mind and rejuvenate your mind and body. Spending three days in Kandy is enough for a foreigner, who wishes to explore the Nature, culture, and history that revolves around this majestic city.

Day 1 of Kandy city Tour. Morning Temple of the Tooth Relic and Museum

Temple of the tooth relic or Sri Dalada Maligawa is the most sacred Buddhist temple on the island and one of the essential parts of any tour in Kandy. Dalada Maligawa is a key tourist attraction in Kandy and attracts thousands of travellers every day.

Hundreds of thousands of Buddhist devotees, as well as a large number of foreign tourists, are heading to this beautiful temple in the city of Kandy.  The devotees, especially the local devotees carry lotus flowers, lamps, and incense sticks as offerings. The entire local devotees are clad in white cloth, which symbolizes purity. Most devotees gather here in the morning, at noon and in the evening during the pooja ceremony. This temple is none other than the temple of the tooth relic or Dalada Maligawa.

Temple of the tooth also known as Dalada Maligawa is a historical site in the city of Kandy, Sri Lanka. This Buddhist temple is one of the most historical temples on the island, which dates back to the 1300s. The temple houses the most important item for the Buddhist religion in Sri Lanka. The temple is visited by thousands of Buddhist pilgrims every day, mostly during the Poojawa or Thewawa.

There are three Poojawas every day Morning, noon and night. Most visitors visit the temple at the night ceremony and which is the most beautiful with the usual performance of drummers.

The Pojawa takes place for one hour and devotees are allowed to look into the Wedasitina Malaya, where the eye tooth relic is deposited. This historical temple is not only important as a Buddhist temple but also as a temple, which is associated with Sinhalese Buddhist culture, tradition, and arts and crafts.

The annual event of the Esala Ceremony is the greatest religious event in Sri Lanka, attracting hundreds of thousands of pilgrims as well as tourists from all over the world.

The temple is open from early morning to night. Foreign visitors are allowed to enter the site by paying the entrance fee of LKR 1500 (approximately USD 10) per person. Tourists from SAARC countries should pay LKR 750 (Approximately USD 5) per person.

Visiting Museum on Kandy City Tour

Kandy national museum exhibits a large number of valuable artefacts and it is located next to the temple of the tooth relic. It has been the official residence of the queen and concubines of the Kandyan kings and now contains a cluster of royal and noble relics including thrones, sceptres, and ceremonial swords, dating back to the 17th and 18th centuries. The visitors can enter the Museum with the ticket issued at the temple of the tooth relic. Travellers can visit the site with the ticket issued at the tooth relic temple.

International Museum

This is the newly added attraction in the city and is located behind the tooth relic temple. A large number of exhibits are located in a 3 storied building, showcasing the Buddhist heritage in several countries. The visitors can enter the site with the ticket issued at the tooth relic temple. No entrance fees for travellers who entered the tooth relic temple.

Day 1 Kandy City Tour. Afternoon the Galmaduwa, Degaldoruwa, Gangarama temple

Degaldoruwa, Gangarama and Galmaduwa are well-known Buddhist temples in the Kandyan kingdom of Sri Lanka. All these temples are located a few kilometres from the city of Kandy. These are important Buddhist places to visit in Sri Lanka upcountry.

These temples are important historical places with a religious background and considered being major attractions in the regions. Degaldoruwa, Gangarama and Galmaduwa temples can be visited without any entrance fee at the time this blog post is written.

Degaldoruwa Raja Maha Vihara

The historical temple of Degaldoruwa is located in the middle of a beautiful area dominated by thick vegetation. The temple is surrounded by patches of forests, coconut plantations and paddy fields. The location of the temple is very close to the Mahaweli River, one needs to cross over the river on the way to the temple from Kandy. The temple is only 10 km from the city of Kandy.

According to historical information, the temple was once renovated under the reign of King Kirti Sri Rajasinghe (1747-1780), as the temple was in very bad condition due to the negligence or destruction caused by the Portuguese forces.  Even though the temple is not very attractive from the outside, it houses a large number of very rare and valuable paintings. These paintings are in existence since the end of the 18th century.

The paintings are depicting the scenes of Jataka stories. Apart from the paintings, there are several Buddha statues in standing, meditation and reclining postures. A secret underground tunnel from Degaldoruwa is believed to be in existence to reach the Temple of the tooth relic. It was intended to use in case of an unsafe condition for the tooth relic due to foreign invasions.

Galmaduwa Vihara

The temple is located on the Kandy-Kundasale main road, about 6 km from the city of Kandy. Galmaduwa Vihara was also reconstructed under the patronage of King Kirti Sri Rajasinghe (1747-1780). The temple is believed to be constructed several centuries prior to the Kandyan kingdom (18th century).

There are several artefacts discovered at the site, during the excavations, Old dagoba made of clay with an inscription is the most important evidence to decide its historical value. The construction of Galmaduwa Vihara has never been completed due to an undisclosed reason and the temple is still in uncompleted condition. The temple inherits the characteristics of Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim and European architecture.

Visiting Gangarama temple on Kandy City Tour

Gangarama temple is a major attraction within the easy reach of the city of Kandy. It is conveniently located near the bridged of Lewella. Today it is under the guidance of the chief incumbent of Malwaththa chapter. According to the stone inscription discovered at the site, the temple was constructed under the reign of King Kirti Sri Rajasinghe (1747-1780).

There is a large number of paintings in the temple depicting the scenery of Jataka stories. These paintings are examples of highly valuable artistic works of ancient Kandyan artisans.

These paintings show the characters of the Kandyan style and largely differ from the Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa paintings. Beautifully decorated tiles had been used as the roofing tiles and figures of the lion are embedded in the tiles.

The roof of the temple is intended to be higher than average in order to accommodate a tall standing Buddha statue, which is 27 feet in height. The paintings around the statue are depicting the scenery of Buddha’s life, Jataka stories and other scenes related to Buddhism in Sri Lanka.

Day 2 Kandy City Tour. Morning the Royal Botanical Gardens

Peradeniya Botanical Gardens is located about five kilometres from the city of Kandy. It is the largest botanical garden on the island. This place is popularly known as Peradeniya and is definitely worth a visit, because of its fascinating collection of trees and plants. Entrance fees at the Peradeniya royal botanical garden are LKR 1500 (approximately USD 10) per person.

Day 2 Kandy City Tour. Morning Embekke Temple (after botanical garden)

Three kilometres from the Peradeniya Botanical Gardens is the Embekke Temple. The temple is dating back to the Gampola period and has unique architecture. Adjacent to the main temple is the ‘Digge’ and inside the temple, there is a courtyard in which the hawisi band originally played. There are many legends that tell how the ‘Devala’ or the ‘Devalaya’ came into being.

Day 2 Kandy City Tour. Mid-afternoon-Pinnawala orphanage

Pinnawala elephant orphanage is situated in Rambukkana, North-West of Kegalle. It was established in 1975 with five elephants and today it has the largest elephant herd in the world. The 24-acres facility accommodates orphan, sick and old elephants. Since Pinnawala is a breeding centre the herd is comprised of a large number of elephants born in the orphanage itself.

Pinnawala elephant orphanage is opening at 8.30 am and closes at 6.00 pm daily. Bottle feeding is at 9.15 am, 1.15 pm and 5 pm every day, while bathing time at the river is at 10 am and 2 pm. The entrance fees for travellers from SAARC countries are LKR 750 (approximately USD 5) and entrance fees for travellers from all other countries are LKR 2500 (approximately USD 17) per person.

Day 3 Kandy City Tour. Morning Udawattakele

If you wish to have a trek, Udawattakele is the best option for you. This forest is situated west and north of the Temple of the Tooth relic, which was a forbidden forest by the kings of Kandy. But today it is a great attraction for tourists especially, those who look for adventure. Udawattakele is particularly popular among bird watchers, while it accommodates a large number of national bird species.

The forest remained impenetrable for over many centuries where wild boar, monkey, hare, squirrel, porcupine, reptiles, monitor lizards, tortoise and varieties of birds, worms, and insects live in perfect harmony with nature. One can see a pond, which is in a heart shape and believed to be used for bathing by the queen, the whole area including the pond had been a pleasure garden of the royal family.

The forest cover of the Udawattekele was very useful for the Kandyan king during the invasions of foreign forces. They used the forest to hide from the enemies and launched guerrilla-type attacks on them. Today Udawattekele is one of the best places to spot birds, butterflies and many other animals. Visitors are allowed to enter the site by paying LKR 800 (USD 5) per person

Shopping in Kandy Sri Lanka

There are many shops in central Kandy that sell antique jewellery, masks, batik, silk, handicrafts, tea and silver belts. Make sure to bargain! The state-run Laksala located on the west side of Kandy Lake showcases arts and crafts.

If you are interested in ancient temple paintings and statues or even some relatively modern replicas, there are many places to visit on the Colombo-Kandy main road. Those outlets have masks, jewellery, fabric and textiles. The silk garden, which is located on the Kandy-Peradeniya old road near the railway crossing has a large array of stunning silk clothing as well as Batik, and cotton clothes.

Day 3 Kandy City Tour. Midday

The Victoria Golf and Country Resort, located in Digana, offers a splendid and challenging course, with 18 holes – par 73 with a 6945- yard length. The course is rated among the 100 most beautiful courses in the world by Golf Digest. International tournaments are held here, such as The Donald Steel Trophy, The Ebert Pot, and The Pam Fernando Trophy. The location is also a luxurious resort that offers luxurious accommodation choices and amenities. It’s an ideal venue for family relaxation and leisure.


Kandy does not have too much nightlife, in fact, you hardly have time and energy after visiting many places during the tour in Kandy. Kandy is a relatively quiet and peaceful city. However, there are several popular night-out spots within the city limit.

The OTSC or Old Trinitians Sports Club is an interesting place to hang around on weekends. There are music and dance from 8 pm onwards on Friday and Saturday. This member-only club accepts guests for a nominal fee. They do have a dress code and make sure to have a decent dress. There are many places to hang out and relax in the city. Whether you come for good food, cool beer, free Wi-Fi or to enjoy the magnificent view of the Kandy town, you can have it all.

Other interesting places to visit during the Kandy City Tour package are:

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