Kandy

Home  View Map Std & ISD Code Friendships Net guide Shopping

 Y More

 

 

 

Kandy (Sinhala: මහ නුවර maha nuvara, pronounced [mahaˈnuʋərə]; Tamil: கண்டி kaṇṭi, pronounced [ˈkaɳɖi]) is the English name for the city of Maha Nuvara (Senkadagalapura) in the centre of Sri Lanka. It was the last capital of the ancient kings' era of Sri Lanka.[1] The city lies in the midst of hills in the Kandy plateau, which crosses an area of tropical plantations, mainly tea. Kandy is one of the most scenic cities in Sri Lanka; it is both an administrative and religious city. It is the capital of the Central Province (which encompasses the districts of Kandy, Matale and Nuwara Eliya) and also of Kandy District. Kandy is the home of The Temple of the Tooth Relic (Sri Dalada Maligawa) one of the most venerable places for the Buddhist community of Sri Lanka and all around the world. It was declared by the UNESCO has a world heritage in 1988

 

The name

The name Kandy is derived from the Sinhalese kaⁿda uḍa pas raṭa. The Portuguese shortened this to "Candea", using the name for both the kingdom and its capital Senkadagalapura. In Sinhala, Kandy is called Maha Nuvara, meaning "Great City" or "Capital", although this is most often shortened to Nuvara.

[edit] History

The name Kandy is derived from the Sinhalese kaⁿda uḍa pas raṭa. The Portuguese shortened this to "Candea", using the name for both the kingdom and its capital Senkadagalapura. In Sinhala, Kandy is called Maha Nuvara, meaning "Great City" or "Capital", although this is most often shortened to Nuvara.

[edit] Establishment

Historical records suggest that Kandy was first established by the King Wickramabahu (1357–1374 CE) near the Watapuluwa area, north of the present city, and named Senkadagalapura at the time, although some scholars suggest the name Katubulu Nuwara may also have been used. The origin of the more popular name for the city, Senkadagala, could have been from a number of sources. These include naming after a brahmin named Senkanda who lived in a cave near the city, after a queen of King Wickramabahu named Senkanda or after a colored stone named Senkadagala.

[edit] Kingdom of Kandy

The Royal Palace of Kandy

In 1592 Kandy became the capital city of the last remaining independent kingdom in the island after the coastal regions had been conquered by the Portuguese. Several invasions by the Portuguese and the Dutch (16th, 17th and 18th century) and later by the British (most notably in 1803) were repelled.

The kingdom tolerated a Dutch presence on the coast of Sri Lanka, although attacks were occasionally launched. The most ambitious offensive was undertaken in 1761, when King Kirti Sri Rajasinha attacked and overran most of the coast, leaving only the heavily fortified Negombo intact. When a Dutch retaliatory force returned to the island in 1763, Kirti Sri Rajasinha abandoned the coastline and withdrew into the interior. When the Dutch continued to the jungles the next year, they were constantly harassed by disease, heat, lack of provisions, and Kandyan sharpshooters, who hid in the jungle and inflicted heavy losses on the Dutch.

The Dutch launched a better adapted force in January of 1765, replacing their troops' bayonets with machetes and using more practical uniforms and tactics suited to jungle warfare. The Dutch were initially successful in capturing the capital, which was deserted, and the Kandyans withdrew to the jungles once more, refusing to engage in open battle. However, the Dutch were again worn down by constant attrition. A peace treaty was signed in 1766. The Dutch remained in control of the coastal areas until 1796, when Great Britain took them over (while the Netherlands under French control) as part of the Napoleonic wars. British possession of these areas was formalized with the treaty of Amiens in 1802. The next year the British also invaded Kandy in what became known as the First Kandyan War, but were repulsed.

The last ruling dynasty of Kandy were the Nayaks. Kandy stayed independent until the early 19th century. In the Second Kandyan War, the British launched an invasion that met no resistance and reached the city on February 10, 1815. On March 2, 1815, a treaty known as the Kandyan Convention was signed between the British and the Radalas (Kandyan aristocrats). With this treaty, Kandy recognized the King of England as its King and became a British protectorate. The last king of the kingdom Sri Vikrama Rajasinha was captured and taken as a royal prisoner by the British to Vellore Fort in southern India along with all claimants to the throne.

The old High Court of Kandy

As the capital, Kandy had become home to the relic of the tooth of the Buddha which symbolizes a 4th-century tradition that used to be linked to the Sinhalese monarchy, since the protector of the relic was the ruler of the land. Thus the Royal Palace and the Temple of the Tooth were placed in close proximity to each other.

[edit] World War II

In 1944, during World War II, the South East Asia Command of the allies was moved to Kandy, where it remained till the end of the war.

[edit] Modern Kandy

View of the lake from Rajapihilla Mawatha, on the right the golden roof of the Temple of the Tooth, top left a Toque Macaque

Kandy remains an important religious centre of the Sinhalese and a place of pilgrimage for Buddhists, namely those belonging to the Theravada school. It is the second-largest city of the island and the capital of Central Province of modern Sri Lanka. Its geographic location has made it a major transportation hub in the island: while Kandy being the gateway to the Central Highlands[3] of Sri Lanka, the city can be reached by major motorways in every direction of the island. The railway line from Colombo, the sea port on the western coast runs via Kandy to the farthest point of Badulla[4] in the Central Highlands. The main roads Colombo-Kandy and Kandy-Nuwara Eliya[5] are two of the most scenic roads of Sri Lanka; Colombo-Kandy[6] road passes through rubber plantations and rice paddies, Kandy-Nuwara Eliya road cuts through paddy fields and seamless tea plantations. Both roads claw their way up winding, rounding over the rings of hills. Currently feasibility studies are afoot for another highway between Colombo and Kandy via Kadawata and the scenic city of Katugastota.

Kandy City Centre, commercial and shopping complex[7] at Dalada Veediya (the road leading to The Holy Temple of the Tooth[8] is the most modern commercial complex in Sri Lanka. The commercial complex studded with ultra modern features, also incorporating traditional architecture of Kandy during the medieval period of Sri Lanka.

The Asgiriya International Stadium of Kandy hosts cricket matches. Pallekele Cricket Stadium of Kandy, designed to accommodate 30,000 spectators, is scheduled to be built in time for the 2011 Cricket World Cup.

[edit] Governance

The Kandy Municipal Council governs the City of Kandy, it was established under the Municipalities Ordinance of 1865. The inaugural meeting had been held on 20 March 1866. The Kandy Town Hall was established in the present premises known as the Dunuwille Walawwe in 1870.[9]

The Government Agent of the Central Province had presided over the council until 1939 when the Mayor was elected. The first elected mayor was Sir Cuda Ratwatte. With further amendments to the ordinance in 1978 the Mayor became the Executive Head whilst the Commissioner was the Administrative head.

Presently the Council consists of 24 members. The Governing Party, United National Party has 14 and the opposition 10. The Council meets once a month to review the progress and decide on the implementation of its projects. Five standing committees of the Council, namely Finance, Law, Works, Sports and Welfare Services (Pre-Schools, Library), also meet monthly to evaluate and recommend to Council relative matters for approval.

[edit] Geography

Kandy lake

[edit] Topography

[edit] Climate

[edit] Earth Science

The Geology Department at the University of Peradeniya,Kandy is the only one Earth Science Department in Sri Lanka, having grown out of the Faculty of Science, with a long and distinguished history.

[edit] Urban morphology

Queens Hotel in Kandy

The city of Kandy lies at an elevation of 465 metres (1,526 ft) above sea level. Its plan developed around two open spaces: an elongated square, at the end of which are the administration buildings of the old capital, and an –artificial lake that is quadrangular in form. A public garden adds to the openness of the city's spatial organization.

On the north shore of the lake, which is enclosed by a parapet of white stone dating to the beginning of the 19th century, are the city's official religious monuments, including the Royal Palace and the Temple of the Tooth, known as the Dalada Maligawa (daḷadā māligāva). Reconstructed in the 18th century, the Dalanda Maligawa is built on a base of granite that was inspired by the temples of Sri Lanka's former capital city, Anuradhapura. An array of materials (limestone, marble, sculpted wood, ivory, etc.) contribute to the richness of this temple. Throughout this small holy city, a number of recent Buddhist monasteries can be found.

Kandy has now grown out to encompass Peradeniya, home to the University of Peradeniya and the Botanical Gardens, Katugastota to the north, and east to Kundasale, Tennekumbura and Gurudeniya.

[edit] Culture

[edit] World Heritage Site

Sacred City of Kandy*

UNESCO World Heritage Site


The Temple of the Tooth Relic in Kandy

State Party

 Sri Lanka

Type

Cultural

Criteria

iv, vi

Reference

450

Region**

Asia-Pacific

Inscription history

Inscription

1988  (10th Session)

* Name as inscribed on World Heritage List.
** Region as classified by UNESCO.

Palace of the Tooth relic

Kandy World Heritage Site maker

The monumental ensemble of Kandy is an example of construction that associates the Royal Palace and the The Temple of the Tooth (Palace of the tooth relic) is the place that houses the Relic of the tooth of the Buddha. Originally part of the Royal Palace complex of the Kandyan Kingdom, it is one of the holiest places of worship and pilgrimage for Buddhist around the world. It was last of a series of temples built in the places where the relic, the actual palladium of the Sinhalese monarchy, was brought following the various relocations of the capital city.

The Palace of the Tooth relic, the palace complex and the holy city of Kandy are associated with the history of the dissemination of Buddhism. The temple is the product of the last peregrination of the relic of the tooth of Buddha and the testimony of a religion which continues to be practiced today.

Royal Palace

The Royal Palace of Kandy is the last Royal Palace built in the island. Although only part of the original palace complex remain. The Temple of the Tooth was part of this complex, due to the ancient tradition that stated that the monarch is the protector of the relic though which the ruler of the land. It today houses the National Museum Kandy which holds an extensive collection of artifacts from both the Kandy Kingdom and the British colonial rule.

Lankatilaka Temple

The Lankatilaka Temple is considered to be one of the best preserved examples of traditional Sinhalese temple architecture. Built on a rock, the temple is reached by a long series of rock cut steps. An arched passage of the image house leads through a Mandapa (hall) into the inner sanctum which is richly decorated with beautiful floral designs. The two side walls and the ceiling are decorated with paintings. In the inner sanctum is a colossal seated image of the Buddha.

Gadaladeniya Temple

The Gadaladeniya Temple's design is of South Indian origin with a Devale attached to it, similar in character to the Natha Devale and the Gedige of Adahana Maluwa. The main shrine room has a seated Buddha statue and the remains of some paintings of the Gampola period.

Among other important temples around Kandy[10] are Dodanwela Devale(shrine, Embakke Devale (shrine), Galmaduwa Vihara temple, Handagala Vihara temple, Lankatilaka Vihara, Medawala Vihara and Nalanda Gedige.

[edit] Festivals

Elephants at the Esala Perahera

Kandy is very popular due to the annual pageant known as the Esala Perahera [ˈśsələ ˌperəˌhśrə],[dubious ] in which one of the inner caskets used for covering the tooth relic of Buddha is taken in a grand procession through the streets of the city. This casket is taken on a royal tusker. The procession includes traditional dancers and drummers, flag bearers of the provinces of the old Kandyan kingdom, the Nilames (lay custodians of temples ) wearing their traditional dresses, torch bearers and also the grandly attired elephant. This ceremony which is annually held in the months of July or August, attracts large crowds from all parts of the country and also many foreign tourists.

[edit] Culinary

Kandy has a modest range of restaurants, as well as an abundance of confectioneries. A range of cuisines is available, including Sri Lankan, Indian, Chinese, European and some multinational fast food outlets such as Pizza Hut, KFC and the Sri Lankan Fast Food chain Dinemore.[11]

[edit] Parks and gardens

Peradeniya Botanical garden

The Royal Botanical Garden, Peradeniya is situated about 5 km to the west of the city centre at Peradeniya and is visited by 1.2 million people per year. It is the largest botanical garden on the island.

The Udawatta Kele (Udawatta Forest) is a protected sanctuary situated in the heart of the city, just north of Temple of the Tooth. Known as "Uda Wasala Watta" in Sinhalese meaning, "the garden situated above the royal palace" it was designated as a forest reserve in 1856, and it became a sanctuary in 1938.

The Royal Palace Park, known as Wace Park is a small park that overlooks Kandy Lake and most of the city. In the park is a Japanese field gun which was captured by the British 14th Army in Burma during World War II and presented to the city of Kandy by Lord Mountbatten, Supreme Allied Commander South East Asia Theatre.

[edit] Demographics

Kandy is a Sinhala majority city; there are sizable communities belonging to other ethnic groups, such as Moors and Tamils.

Ethnicity in Kandy(2007)

Population

Percent

Sinhalese

  

70.48%

Sri Lankan Moors

  

13.93%

Sri Lankan Tamils

  

8.57%

Indian Tamils

  

4.77%

Others

  

2.26%

Ethnicity

Population

% Of Total

Sinhala

77,560

70.48

Sri Lankan Moors

15,326

13.93

Sri Lankan Tamils

9,427

8.57

Indian Tamils

5,245

4.77

Other (including Burgher, Malay)

2,489

2.26

Total

110,049

100

Source:statistics.gov.lk

[edit] Education

Kandy is home to some of the island's oldest boy schools and several girl schools as well. The county's second oldest university, University of Peradeniya is at Peradeniya,and The Open University of Sri Lanka Kandy Premises also a suburb of Kandy. The Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology has a center in the city, which is rather insignificant. Most of the private sector higher educational institutions also have their branches in Kandy.

The Geology Department at the University of Peradeniya, Kandy is the only one Earth Science Department in Sri Lanka, having grown out of the Faculty of Science, with a long and distinguished history.

Kandy is also home to the Institute of Fundamental Studies (IFS). IFS is the premier institute of basic and applied research in Sri Lanka. IFS also trains around 32 graduate students at any given time.

[edit] Economy

An old Street of Kandy

Kandy is second only to Colombo the center of the Sri Lankan Economy. Many major corporations have large branch offices in Kandy and many industries include textiles, furniture, Information Technology and jewellery are found here. Many agriculture research centers are located throughout the city.

[edit] Transport

A street of Kandy

Kandy has a public transport system based primarily on buses. The bus service is operated both by private companies and the government's own Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB).

A-Grade Highways
  • A1 highway (Kandy road) connects Colombo with Kandy.

  • A9 highway connects Jaffna with Kandy.

  • A26 highway connects Padiyathalawa with Kandy via Mahiyangana.

  • A10 highway connects Kurunegala with Kandy via Katugastota.

High speed expressways
  • Colombo - Kandy High speed elevated expressway running 115 km is currently under construction, providing a high speed link between the two largest economic centers.

Rail

[edit] Sport

 

Source : Wikipedia

 

Contact US

 
 

Home  View Map Std & ISD Code Friend ships Net guide Shopping Doctors Y More