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Written by Alex on June 3, 2021 Share on

Royal Botanic Gardens Kandy – An Utopia for Nature Lovers!

Sri Lanka is a country with the perfect blend of nature and historical heritage. Wherever you turn, you will find spectacular tourist spots around. The beautiful country is the perfect destination to escape from your hectic routine and spend quality time with your family. Right from pristine beaches to historical monuments, the country has it all. There are several tourists spots in various important cities like Colombobest, Kandy, and many more. Kandy in particular has its fair share of the best tourist spots in Sri Lanka which every traveller should visit. One of those amazing tourist spots in Kandy is the Royal Botanic Gardens. The place attracts hundreds of travellers every month due to its might and beauty. Read on to know more about this spectacular tourist spot.

Kandy in Sri Lanka
Photo by Steffen B. on Unsplash

Royal Botanic Gardens in Kandy, Sri Lanka

The Royal Botanical Gardens located in the region of Peradeniya is present at an altitude of 460m above sea level and 5 km away from the city of Kandy. It is the oldest formal gardens in Sri Lanka. This amazing tourist spot attracts almost 2 million local and foreign visitors annually on average. This is because of the fact that the garden is home to more than 4000 species of plants. The different types of plants here include orchids, spices, medicinal plants and palm trees. Most importantly, it is famous for its collection of orchids and the long, palm framed pathways. The Garden is under the management of the National Botanic Gardens of the Department of Agriculture. This is the largest landscaped gardens in Sri Lanka spanning 147 acres.

Garden in Sri Lanka
Photo by Samithu Siriwardana on Unsplash

Other significant flora includes the century-old giant Javan fig tree, the Giant Bamboo of Burma, the Cannonball tree, and the Double Coconut Palm. There is also a National Herbarium of Sri Lanka as an annexure. It encompasses a total area of 147 acres. The place is also home to diverse wildlife including 80 recorded species of butterflies, 20 species and 15 species of reptiles and respectively.


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History of Royal Botanic Gardens in Kandy

The Royal Botanic Gardens in Kandy came into existence as a garden under the reign of King Wickramabahu III in 1371. It started as a small garden and then it was expanded with many attractions by his successors King Kirti Sri, King Rajasinghe and King Vimala Dharma. However, It was recreated as a Botanical garden by the British in the year of 1821. Alexandar Moon initiated the cultivation of coffee and cinnamon plants. In addition to that, plants were brought from Kew Garden in London, Slave Island, Colombo, and the Kalutara Garden in Kalutara which led to the proper establishment of the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kandy in 1843. It became the property of the government when the Department of Agriculture took over the garden in 1912.

Important Attractions of Royal Botanic Gardens

The Garden has a plethora of flora that will make you stay there forever with its beauty. There is also a spice garden here which is filled with exotic spices like Cloves, Pepper & Cardamom. You can also come across an artificial lake with giant water lily & papyrus reeds floating over it. George Gardener, who was the Superintendent of the park from 1844 to 1849 is remembered by the white-domed rotunda near the lake. As your stroll more, you can also see a massive Ceylon Ironwood tree which is historically significant as it was planted by Nicholas II in 1894. Apart from these, below are some of the important trees planted by significant personalities in the past.

Tree NamePlanted by (Year)
Camphor TreeFirst Sri Lankan Woman PM, Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike (1972)
A Tea PlantChina (1824)
Sorrowless TreeQueen Elizabeth (1981)
Baikea InsignisSyedna Taher Saifuddin (1941)
Yellow Trumpet TreeCrown Prince Akihito of Japan (1981)
Some Important Attractions of Royal Botanic Gardens Kandy

How to Reach Royal Botanic Gardens

Royal Botanic Garden is located in the Central Province of Sri Lanka in Kandy. You can reach the place via the train, bus or cab. The cheapest option would be the train and the Kandy railway station lies just 5 km away from the garden. You can also catch buses to Peradeniya to reach the garden. If you are looking for comfort and speed, then you might choose to catch a cab even though it is more expensive.

Kandy Railway station
Photo by Klara Kulikova on Unsplash

Things to Know

Things to know
Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash
  • The ideal time to visit is between the months of December and May as the weather is pleasant for sightseeing
  • The garden has various wildlife also present. Please don’t disturb them and admire them from a distance. Some like fruitbats can attack you when instigated. So be beware of it.
  • Since there will be a lot of walking involved and you might be in the sun for a long time. So, wear suitable shoes and dresses that will keep you comfy.
  • There will be shops available where you can buy stuff. But, make sure you have the items packed safely and double-check the bills/receipts as you might be asked to produce at the airport for a customs check.
  • The Garden management will provide you with a map to explore the garden. Make sure that they are returned back to them safely.

Entry Charges, Address & Timings

Address: Peradeniya Rd, Kandy, Sri Lanka
Timings: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm on Monday to Friday | 8:00 am – 7:00 pm on Saturday | Closed on Sundays
Entry Cost: 1500 Rupees for Adults and 750 Rupees for Children
*There will be additional charges if you want to carry cameras.


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