Kandy, Udawattakelle, Pinnawella, Peradeniya
Kandy Travel Blog› entry 5 of 11 › view all entries
April 12th, 2010 – by: thesneets
But hey, I made it to this gem of a town in one piece. Kandy became one of my favorite places in Sri Lanka. Most guesthouses are beautifully aligned along a small hill overlooking Kandy Lake, and the center of Kandy is burried within a valley surrounded by forest. A total contrast to Sigiriya the day before, and one of the reasons I like Sri Lanka so much: The scenic diversity is awesome!
The "Highest View Inn" was my guesthouse of choice.
Fritz told me that he was in Jaffna (in the northern part of Sri Lanka) some 30 years ago, when the country was still deeply war-plagued, and he really hopes to visit that area again very soon. It has quite a different feel to it, not only because the people there were living in war all the time, but also because the climate is once more very unique compared to the rest of the country.
Kandy is a great starting point for day-trips, but it also has a lot to offer on its own. The Udawattakelle Forest Sanctuary is good for a half-day visit, for example. You can reach it easily by foot - it's only a 10-minute-walk from Kandy Lake - and the reward is a cool, shadowy forest full of tree-lined walkways, short trekking paths, and lots of monkeys! Come here around mid-day and you can escape the hot sun for at least one or two hours, or more, if you try walking all the paths there.
The day after I went to the Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya. They're said to be one of the best botanical gardens in Asia, and eventhough I can only compare it to european gardens and the one in Wellington/NZ, I would agree that it is definitely a top-notch place. Most of the plants have very good explanation plates nearby, and there are lots of small specialized and nicely decorated greenhouses.
Also worth a visit is the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage. I haven't been to India before, so Elephants were still interesting for me ;-) But the place does have a very tourist-oriented feel to it, and that's something I normally try to avoid. Anyway, it's interesting to observe the elephants bathing in the river, and if you always wanted to buy a calendar or postcards made of elephant sh*t, this is the place to visit!
After three nights in Kandy, my journey went on and I finally reached the highlands of Sri Lanka.
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