After a twelve hour drive, we finally arrived to Kandy. The first thing we noticed were lots of shops and finally some tourists. We were quite hungry so our driver took us to a small restaurant where we had our favourite kottu roti. Yes, we didn't learn from our previous experience:-). Once again though, even after assuring us that there will be no chilli in our meals, there was chilli everywhere and the food was so hot that we couldn't eat it. But for the price of 190RP per portion we didn't dwell on it.
The next morning, we headed off to the famous Tooth Relic Temple which opens at 5.30am. To our surprise there were already many local people paying their respects. You have to pass through the security to check for weapons and then you have to remove your shoes. We were not thrilled about it as the area was quite large and we had to walk on the sand, and pavement which in some parts was stained with blood. After we paid an entry fee of 1000RP (locals have free entry), we headed to the temple. To our huge disappointment, there is only one room where locals pay their respects and nothing else to see. So to pay over 10AUD fee per person was a huge rip off. We've seen many temples around Asia and this was probably the worst one. It has a huge meaning for Budhists but to us it was nothing spectacular.
Dambulla Cave Temple
This temple was by far the most impressive we've seen in Sri Lanka. The five rock temples are carved in the large rock towering 160m above the surrounding plains. After ascending several hundred stairs in hot and humid temperatures, we had to leave our shoes once again outside the entrance to the cave. By now we learned to wear old socks as the rocks were once again very hot and very difficult to walk on. The entry fee is 1500RP per person.
The five caves contain 153 Buddha statues, 3 statues of Sri Lankan kings and 4 statues of gods and goddesses. The most striking are the paintings inside the caves which cover the area of 2,100 square meters and date back to the 1st century BC. The largest cave is 52m long and 7m tall.