Planning for a vacation at an international destination? Visit Sri Lanka – a country known for its natural beauty. In Sri Lanka, visit three of its largest and most bewitching cities – Colombo, Bentota and Kandy. While Colombo is famous for its colonial architecture, heritage sites and pristine beaches, Bentota is famous for its tranquil environs and Kandy is revered for its centuries-old gardens and as centre of Buddhist learning. Among the must-visit attractions in these cities are the Sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic, Royal Botanic Gardens and Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage.

Colombo City:

                    

The vibrant city of Colombo is the capital of Sri Lanka and the largest city in the country. Located on the south west coast of Sri Lanka, its huge harbor has been in use for well over 2000 years by traders from near and far. Even today it is one of the world' s major trans-shipment centers for cargo containers. The harbor was also the reason why the Portuguese first landed here in 1505 looking for spices. The rapidly colonized Colombo and its adjacent areas those were important for the growing of cinnamon and other spices. The Dutch seized the city in 1656 after an epic siege, and remained here till 1796, when the British took over. The country gained independence in 1948. Colombo' s geography is a mix of land and water, with numerous canals and the landmark Beira Lake which is spread over 65 hectares in the middle of the city. Even a hundred years ago it occupied around 165 hectares of land, but has shrunk since because of rapid urbanization. Many of Colombo' s landmark buildings are built around its banks. In the 19th century, Colombo was known as the Garden City of the East due to its vast stretches of greenery. Its garden roots can still be found in the shady boulevards across the city. Colombo today is a combination of the old and the new. Check out districts like Pettah - they are teeming with markets and the Fort area is brimming with historical locations. There are fancy eateries, plenty of art galleries and museums. You can find exquisite local food in its old quarters, something you have to experience to gain full knowledge of what Sri Lanka is about. Not to forget the exotic beaches that are close-by and have rapidly become the favourite of tourists from around the globe. Of course Colombo is a hopping off place for tourists on their way to other destinations around the country

Dambulla Cave Temple:

The second largest city in Sri Lanka after Colombo, Kandy is located in the centre of the country, 136 km north-east of capital Colombo. It was the last capital of the Sinhala Kings and is also home to the most sacred site for Buddhists, the Temple of the Tooth. Even though in 1815 the Kandyan Kingdom (an independent monarchy) came under the British rule, the city still managed to retain its ancient traditions and designs. Today, due to an influx of immigrants and gentrification, the landscape of the city has changed. The locals still see themselves as slightly different from the rest of the country as you will notice a fine distinction in culture, traditions and behaviour. Its location on the Kandy plateau ensures that the city is visited with cool breeze throughout the year, making it a perfect vacation spot. It is also draped with colourful houses and hotels. Kandy is a city to visit when you want to get away from the taxing hustle and bustle of city life. Its peace and quiet, and laid-back attitude along with its verdant landscape, not to forget its culinary attractions, have all contributed to Kandy climbing up the list of one of the most attractive destinations in Asia.

Kandy King:

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Sigiriya rock fortress:

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Bentota:

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Image Credits: https://www.siaholidays.com.au/files/8814/3045/5961/sri-lanka-colombo.jpg

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