Major Cities in Sri Lanka

By | July 9, 2022

Colombo (Sri Lanka)

According to ITYPEMBA, Colombo is the capital of Sri Lanka. The city was founded by Arab traders, it received its current name from the Portuguese in 1517 in honor of Christopher Columbus.

The northern part of the city is occupied by the young district of Fort. This is the financial center of Colombo – here are the offices of the largest firms, banks, trendy hotels, fashionable shops, restaurants, and tourist offices. In addition to new buildings, there are buildings of colonial architecture – the Government House, the clock tower and the main post office, in Central Victoria Park there is a monument to Queen Victoria. Nearby is the Cinnamon Gardens area. About a century ago, there were extensive cinnamon plantations here, and now it is the most prestigious area of the city with chic mansions and beautiful alleys.

For walks, the Galle Face Green Park area is ideal, which stretches for 1.5 km. It was built in 1859. On weekend evenings, vacationers come here for a picnic.

The cultural heritage of Sri Lanka can be seen in the National Museum. This is the oldest museum in the country, with more than 4000 manuscripts written on palm leaves, sculptures, paintings, bronzes and a collection of weapons. The Art Gallery exhibits the best works of local masters.

To the east of the Fort is the old quarter of Pettah. Here you will find many markets, shops and small shops. Each separate street of this area is famous for its kind of goods. For example, Keyzer Street sells household goods, Prince Street sells glass and mirrors, Gabo Lane is known for herbal medicines, and Sea Street is full of jewelry stores.

In Colombo, temples, mosques and churches are adjacent to each other. The most famous Buddhist temples are Ganjarama on the shores of Lake Beira, Kelaniya-Raja-Mahavihara, which is more than 2000 years old and where there are many Buddha statues and frescoes with fragments from his life, the Vajaramaya temple is also interesting. Hindu temples are called in Colombo “kovils”, the main temples are Kathiseran, Sri Ponnambalam-Vaneshwaram, Sri Bala-Selava-Vinayagar-Murthi. From the mosques you can visit Dawatagaha and Afar Jumma. There are also Christian churches – the Church of St. Peter, which was previously the site of the celebrations of the Dutch rulers, the Church of St. Andrew (1842) and the Church of St. Anthony, which is located on the seashore.

Be sure to visit the Dehiwala Zoo, 11 km south of the Fort. A huge aquarium represents more than 500 species of marine animals, there is an arboretum and a butterfly park, but the most interesting of all is the evening show of elephants.

Kandy (Sri Lanka)

The city of Kandy stands on the banks of the Mahaweli River, 116 km northeast of Colombo. The city was founded in the 14th century, and in 1592, when the Tooth of the Buddha was brought here for storage, it became the capital of the state. The city remained in this status until 1815.

Kandy is located among the hills at an altitude of 488 m. In its central part there is an artificial lake, in the center of which rises an island with the Royal Summer Palace. On the shore of this lake is the main attraction of the city – the temple of the “Sacred tooth of the Buddha” (Dalada Maligawa) 17th century. Inside it, in the stupa of the Buddha, decorated with gold and precious stones, this sacred relic is kept. Every day the temple and the space around it is full of believers, and in July-August every year a festive procession begins from here in honor of the tooth of the Buddha Kandy Yesala Perahera. The Temple of the Sacred Tooth of Buddha is surrounded by Hindu and Buddhist temples. The Kandy

Museum has a variety of historical exhibits. The city also operates the Ceylon Tea Museum, which exhibits antiques related to the production and consumption of tea – a manual tea roller, the first dryer, the oldest Ceylon tea bag in its original packaging, which is over 56 years old, as well as a photograph of the world’s largest tea bush. Near Kandy, in Peradeniya, the Botanical Garden is laid outcreated in the 14th century. The garden, one of the largest in Asia, covers an area of 60 hectares and is divided into several zones. For hours you can walk along the palm alleys, the Japanese park; a “drunk” alley, all the trees on which look like tipsy people who cannot stand up straight; “alley of celebrities”, where there are trees planted by Nicholas II, Chekhov, Gagarin. The garden contains many interesting trees, including those that are completely unusual for our eyes. Particularly impressive are the trees that stand out for their size: the Elephant’s Legs tree with 3-kilogram fruits and Benjamin’s ficus, whose crown covers an area of ​​almost two and a half thousand square meters. No less unusual are the smallest inhabitants of the garden – indoor plants. The highlight of the garden is a collection of 300 species of unique decorative orchids. Across the Mahaweli River

Even in the vicinity of Kandy, it is worth visiting the city of Pinnawala, where the elephant nursery is located. Young individuals left without parents come here. In the nursery, elephants receive a little education, after which some of them are sent to zoos around the world, others are trained to work in Ceylon. The youngest elephants are about 4 months old.

Kandy (Sri Lanka)