2010-10-13 21:12
Palace of the Tooth in Kandy. (Stock)

Kandy (Pallekele)

Kandy lies in the midst of hills in the Kandy plateau, which crosses an area of tropical plantations, mainly tea. Kandy is one of the most scenic cities in Sri Lanka; it is both an administrative and religious city.

It is the second-largest city of the island and the capital of Central Province of modern Sri Lanka. Its geographic location has made it a major transportation hub in the island: while Kandy being the gateway to the Central Highlands of Sri Lanka, the city can be reached by major motorways in every direction of the island. The railway line from Colombo, the sea port on the western coast runs via Kandy to the farthest point of Badulla in the Central Highlands.

The main roads Colombo-Kandy and Kandy-Nuwara Eliya are two of the most scenic roads of Sri Lanka; Colombo-Kandy  road passes through rubber plantations and rice paddies, Kandy-Nuwara Eliya road cuts through paddy fields and seamless tea plantations. Both roads claw their way up winding, rounding over the rings of hills. Currently feasibility studies are afoot for another highway between Colombo and Kandy via Kadawata and the scenic city of Katugastota.

Kandy City Centre, Commercial and Shopping Complex at Dalada Veediya (the road leading to The Holy Temple of the Tooth is the most modern commercial complex in Sri Lanka.

Pallekele International Cricket Stadium

Kandy has a public transport system based primarily on buses, as well as efficient and regular train services.

Must see tourist spots in Kandy include the Palace of the Tooth that houses the Relic of the tooth of the Buddha. Originally part of the Royal Palace complex of the Kandyan Kingdom, it is one of the holiest places of worship and pilgrimage for Buddhist around the world. It was last of a series of temples built in the places where the relic, the actual palladium of the Sinhalese monarchy, was brought following the various relocations of the capital city.

The Royal Palace of Kandy is the last Royal Palace built in the island. Although only part of the original palace complex remain. The Temple of the Tooth was part of this complex, due to the ancient tradition that stated that the monarch is the protector of the relic though which the ruler of the land. It today houses the National Museum Kandy which holds an extensive collection of artefacts from both the Kandy Kingdom and the British colonial rule.

The Lankatilaka Temple is considered to be one of the best preserved examples of traditional Sinhalese temple architecture. Built on a rock, the temple is reached by a long series of rock cut steps. 


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