Discover the wonders of Kandy, Sri Lanka – a land of cultural splendor and breathtaking landscapes. Kids and teens will be fascinated by the ancient temples and bask in the beauty of the environment around them. But the highlight of the year is the spectacular Esala Perahera festival, known for its vibrant celebrations and colorful processions. Join in the fun and immerse yourself in the rich heritage of this amazing city – a trip you’ll never forget!

Things to do in Kandy

Visit the Temple of the Sacred Tooth RelicTemple of the Sacred Tooth Relic

If you want to take a journey through time and explore the roots of Buddhism, a trip to the Temple of the Tooth in Sri Lanka is an incredible experience. This sacred site is believed to house a precious relic – the tooth of the Buddha himself – making it a pilgrimage spot for Buddhists from all over the world.

For children and teenagers, visiting the temple is a fantastic way to learn about the fascinating history and rich cultural traditions of Sri Lanka. Not only will you be able to marvel at the intricate architecture and stunning views, but you’ll also gain a deep understanding of Buddhism that will stay with you for years to come.

Go to the MarketVisiting the Market in Kandy is a fun thing to do in Sri Lanka

Discover the ultimate shopping destination in Sri Lanka at the Kandy market. From clothing to shoes, fruits to veggies, and even toys, this bustling market has everything you could want. Want to save even more? Try your hand at bargaining and watch as prices drop. Don’t miss out on this exciting marketplace, where you can snag all your must-have items at unbeatable prices.

Explore the Botanical Gardens

Explore the lush Peradeniya Botanical Gardens for a serene escape into nature. You’ll be surrounded by an array of enchanting plants and majestic trees while discovering fascinating species of wildlife and birds. As you meander through the gardens, learn about the vast diversity of vibrantly colored flora and let your curiosity bloom.

Hike to the Knuckles Range

The Knuckles Range is a beautiful mountain range that offers several hiking trails. It’s a great way to get active, enjoy the scenery, and learn about the flora and fauna of the area. Here are some of the best trails for kids in the Knuckles Range:

  1. Mini World’s End Trail – This trail is an easy hike that takes you to a stunning viewpoint overlooking the Knuckles Range. It is a great option for families with younger children.
  2. Corbett’s Gap Trail – This trail is a bit more challenging than the Mini World’s End Trail but still suitable for kids. It offers beautiful views of the surrounding mountains and forests.
  3. Pitawala Pathana Trail – This trail takes you through a grassland area that is home to a variety of wildlife. It is an easy hike that is perfect for families with younger children.
  4. Sera Ella Trail – This trail takes you to a beautiful waterfall that is surrounded by lush greenery. It is an easy hike that is suitable for all ages.
  5. Riverston Peak Trail – This trail is a bit more challenging than the others on this list, but still doable for kids with some hiking experience. It offers breathtaking views of the Knuckles Range and the surrounding valleys.

It is important to note that hiking in the Knuckles Range can be challenging due to the rugged terrain and variable weather conditions. Always make sure to bring plenty of water, snacks, and appropriate clothing and footwear. It is also recommended to hire a local guide to ensure a safe and enjoyable hiking experience.

Visit Kandy LakeKandy Lake

Kandy Lake is a beautiful artificial lake in the heart of the city. It’s a perfect spot for a family picnic or a relaxing stroll.

Take a Cooking Class

Sri Lankan cuisine is delicious and unique. Kids and teens can learn to cook traditional Sri Lankan dishes and enjoy a hands-on experience. Book a cooking class here

Visit the Bahirawakanda Vihara Buddha Statue

This is a massive Buddha statue that overlooks the city of Kandy. It’s a unique experience for kids and teens to learn about Buddhist culture and see the beautiful views of Kandy.

Enjoy traditional dance performances

The Kandyan dance is a traditional Sri Lankan dance that is a must-see for tourists. It’s a great way for kids and teens to learn about Sri Lankan culture and enjoy a live performance.

Check out a Spice Garden

Spice Garden La Grow is fascinating. It’s so interesting to see first-hand how the spices you use all the time are grown. Do your kids know that cinnamon comes from a tree? This is a great way to work in some educational fun. They even give out massages using products made from what they grow. This is optional, and you will definitely need to tip them if you choose to get a massage. 

Hike the Pekoe TrailHike the Pekoe Trail

The Pekoe Trail is a breathtaking 300km and 22-stage-long hiking trail that winds its way through the picturesque tea country aka a journey through the Central Highlands of Sri Lanka. This magnificent trail is filled with adventure, offering visitors a chance to discover the true essence of Sri Lankan culture and history. Take a step back in time as you wander through the vast network of tea trails, soaking up the natural beauty of the area and learning about the fascinating heritage of this legendary region. Fun fact: This area was used for backdrops in the making of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, with Harrison Ford

I am in no way suggesting you hike this entire trail. There is a piece of it in Kandy where you can hike up a way for however long you like and then turn back starting near the Sugarcane Quarantine center. If your kids are 12 or older this is a doable hike. If they are younger, don’t do it. It’s extremely steep and I almost couldn’t do it. Half our group turned back. If you make it to the cell towers the views are epic. This will take 4 – 5 hours round trip. 

Gem and Mineral Museum

Sri Lanka is famous for colored gems like sapphires. They have a documentary at the museum that walks you through the entire history of gems in Sri Lanka. 

Tea TrainTea Train in Sri Lanka

Take the train to Nuwara Eliya. Parents will enjoy the views and kids just think it’s fun to ride a train. 

Take a Day Trip to SigiriyaSigiriya Rock Fortress

Here you can climb to the top of a rock fortress and visit a traditional village. Plus, there are lots of other things to do. The hike to the fortress is tough but so worth it. Buy a day trip excursion here

Overall, Kandy, Sri Lanka has plenty of activities to offer for kids and teens. It’s a great destination for families to learn about Sri Lankan culture, enjoy outdoor activities, and have fun together.

Kandy FAQs

What is the best time to visit Kandy?

The best time to visit Kandy is from December to April, when the weather is dry and sunny. However, the city can be visited throughout the year, as the temperature remains relatively constant.

How do I get to Kandy?

Kandy can be reached by train, bus, or car. The most popular mode of transportation is by train, as it offers some of the most scenic views in Sri Lanka.

What are the top tourist attractions in Kandy?

Some of the top tourist attractions in Kandy include the Temple of the Tooth, the Royal Botanical Gardens, the Kandy Lake, the Bahirawakanda Vihara Buddha Statue, and the Peradeniya University.

What are some local dishes to try in Kandy?

Some local dishes to try in Kandy include Kandyan chicken curry, Kandyan fish curry, string hoppers, and pol roti (coconut flatbread).

Is Kandy safe for tourists?

Kandy is generally considered safe for tourists, but it is always important to take basic safety precautions, such as avoiding isolated areas at night and being aware of your surroundings. I’ve been here with the kids and without during the day and at night and I have never had an issue. I’ve never even been on edge. It’s very safe. 

What is the cost of living in Kandy?

The cost of living in Kandy is relatively low compared to many other cities in Sri Lanka. Accommodation, food, and transportation are all reasonably priced, making it an affordable destination for travelers.

Where to Stay in Kandy?

For a more luxurious stay check out Mahaweli Reach Hotel and for a more budget-friendly place to stay check out Radisson Kandy

10-Day Sri Lanka Itinerary for Families

Sri Lanka Bucket List for Families

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