SIGIRIYA/ DAMBULLA/MATALE/ KANDY.
After breakfast, checkout from the hotel and proceed to Kandy.
Afterwards your next stop will be at a spice plantation in Matale where they grow a variety of spices such as cinnamon, pepper and nutmeg, for which Sri Lanka was renowned and initially colonized by the Portuguese, Dutch and British. You could also visit a batik factory and watch the production of the artistic fabric.
En route visiting the cave temples of Dambulla.
Dambulla is renowned for its Cave Temples, which were built by King Valagambahu in the 1st century BC in gratitude for the shelter he sought in the caves when fleeing from Indian invaders. Sited on a gigantic granite outcrop, which towers more than 160m above the surrounding land, the caves are completely covered by ancient frescoes depicting religious and secular scenes. Protected within the caves are hundreds of statues of Buddha, many carved out of the rock itself, of which the largest is the 15m long reclining Buddha.
Arrive in Kandy. Kandy is the old capital of Ceylon and the seat of the last Singhalese kingdom. It is a charming city with the most important Buddhist temple in the country and is set around an ancient artificial lake amongst rolling hills that are covered by forests and tea plantations. Set in the mountainous area of the island, there are fantastic views over the city from some of the hotels.
Visit the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha in the late afternoon.
Ever since it was founded in the 16th Century, it has housed one of the most sacred relics of Buddhism – a tooth of Buddha collected from his funeral pyre and which is now protected within the gold-roofed Temple of the Tooth.
Kandy is a great place to buy gemstones. Sapphires of all colours, rubies, tourmalines and spinnels can all be found here. Visitors are also invited to have a look around their workshop, where they will be able to see the design, and cutting, polishing and setting processes.
Check in to the hotel for overnight stay.