Call us today on 020 7644 1755

Kandy and Pinnawela

Duration: Full Day

kandy and pinnawela

Situated in the Indian Ocean, the beautiful island of Sri Lanka is renowned for its magnificent cultural and natural treasures. The country has had its fair share of natural disasters over the years, including the devastating 2004 tsunami, but this breathtaking island has gradually been rebuilding itself and tourism is healing the wounds. Diverse landscapes, a rich cultural heritage and spectacular wildlife await you, along with an extremely warm welcome.

Your tour begins with a scenic drive from Colombo to the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage, which was set up by the Department of Wildlife in 1975 to protect elephants in Sri Lanka from the threat of extinction. Young elephants found orphaned, injured or abandoned are tamed and cared for on the Pinnawela estate, and now the orphanage is home to over 70 baby and adult elephants, the largest captive herd in the world.

These gentle giants roam freely amongst twenty-five acres of parkland, fringed by palm and coconut trees, and are well looked after by their mahouts (keepers). Every effort has been made to allow the elephants to function as they would in the wild, including encouraging them to develop their own herd structure. Highlights of the trip include bottle-feeding the babies and watching the elephants bathing and playing in the river, which is an unforgettable experience not to be missed.

Our next stop is the picturesque hillside city of Kandy, the last capital of the Sri Lankan Kings and the cultural capital of Sri Lanka. The city’s proud heritage and beautiful lakeside setting has attracted travellers to this part of the island for centuries. Aside from its natural beauty, Kandy is ultimately famous for its many beautiful shrines and temples. This tour will lead you to the 16th century Dalada Maligawa (Temple of the Tooth), which allegedly houses Sri Lanka’s most sacred religious relic – the tooth of the Buddha.

After wards we will make our way to one of the most beautiful gardens in Asia, the Peradiniya Botanical Gardens (also known as the Royal Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya). Dating back to the 14th century, during the reign of King Vikrama Bahu III, they were used as royal pleasure gardens before colonial times. Stroll along the winding paths at your leisure and marvel at the striking landscapes, adorned with lush vegetation, brightly-coloured ornamental flowers and exotic plants, surrounded by the Mahaweli River.

The rest of the day will be spent exploring the historical city of Kandy, the old capital of the Kandyan kingdom and an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Kandy was the capital city of Sri Lanka from 1592 until the 19th century when it was conquered by the British. The city still retains influences of its colonial past after being conquered by the Portuguese in the 16th century, the Dutch in the 17th century, and finally the British in 1815.

Kandyans are particularly proud of their heritage, however, and their traditions and Buddhist values still prevail. Kandy is also well known for its traditional, quality handicrafts and souvenirs, so spend time browsing the bustling markets for spices, antiques and batiks, as well as some of the finest gems and jewellery on the island. This fantastic experience will undoubtedly be a highlight of your holiday in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka Holidays Browse all

Best Value

From £739 per person
avani bentota + sheraton abu dhabi hotel and resort

Avani Bentota + Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel and Resort

Avani Bentota is set in eight acres of lush frangipanis and coconut palms by the golden sands of Bentota. This hotel...

From £819 per person
mermaid hotel and club + rove downtown dubai

Mermaid Hotel and Club + Rove Downtown Dubai

This resort is spread across two acres of lush coconut groves and tropical gardens by the golden sands of Kalutura...

From £869 per person
avani bentota + the ritz-carlton, difc

Avani Bentota + the Ritz-carlton, Difc

Avani Bentota is set in eight acres of lush frangipanis and coconut palms by the golden sands of Bentota. This hotel...

From £869 per person
tangerine beach + sheraton jumeirah beach

Tangerine Beach + Sheraton Jumeirah Beach

The place where "space meets light", the Tangerine Beach Hotel is a heavenly fusion of modern and ancient elegant...

From £869 per person
avani bentota + Carlton Palace Hotel

Avani Bentota + Carlton Palace Hotel

Avani Bentota is set in eight acres of lush frangipanis and coconut palms by the golden sands of Bentota. This hotel...

From £879 per person
mermaid hotel and club + media rotana hotel

Mermaid Hotel and Club + Media Rotana Hotel

You will enjoy a perfect mix of beach and city in this attractive selection of hotel and destinations. Mermaid Hotel and...

Talk to a specialist


Call 020 7644 1755 to speak with our award-winning travel consultants.

Opening hours 09:00 - 17:00 GMT

Related articles for Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka News

Browse all Sri Lanka News

Sri Lanka celebrates highest ever visitor arrivals in 2016

Tourism in Sri Lanka is booming, after the island nation recorded 2,058,000 tourists in 2016. The numbers were a 14 per cent increase compared to 2015 and the highest ever recorded, according to the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority. This year, the country is setting a target of 2.5 million tourists, and anticipates to receive four million visitors by 2020.

Movenpick Hotel Colombo marks Movenpick's entry in Sri Lanka

Movenpick Hotels & Resorts has marked its entry into Sri Lanka with the launch of a new hotel in the city of Colombo. The five-star Mövenpick Hotel Colombo hotel has 219 guest rooms and suites, as well as upscale facilities including seven dining outlets, a rooftop bar, a rooftop swimming pool, a spa, a fitness centre, and five meeting rooms and a boardroom.

Sri Lanka records more than two millions international visitors in 2016

Tourist arrivals in Sri Lanka exceeded the two million target in 2016, according to John Amaratunga, the country’s Tourism Development Minister. The island received more 2.2 million visitors in the last 12 months, and the Minister is expecting more than $3.5 billion in revenues generated by tourism. Arrivals in November, 2015 increased by 16 per cent compared to the same month in 2015.