The Best Hotels to Book in Kandy, Sri Lanka

| Courtesy of The Elephant Stables / Booking.com
Lena Blos

Kandy, the last capital of the ancient kings and the cultural hub of Sri Lanka, is situated in the centre of the country, surrounded by scenic hills and tea plantations. Home to one of the most revered Buddhist relics, a tooth of Buddha, it also houses an exquisite selection of hotels. Offering the peaceful tranquillity of the hillside, plus proximity to all the main sights, here are the best hotels in Kandy, bookable on Culture Trip.

1. Kandy House

Boutique Hotel, Luxury

Kandy House
Courtesy of Kandy House / Expedia

Occupying a carefully restored colonial manor dating to 1804, Kandy House is a nine-room nirvana on the quiet outskirts of the city. With intricately carved canopy beds, double hammocks and an infinity pool overlooking paddy fields, this place is made for couples – but night owls should know there’s a chance you’ll be woken before dawn by the sound of monks chanting in the nearby temple.

2. OZO

Hotel

OZO
Courtesy of OZO / Booking.com

The white tower block of OZO looks a little out of place alongside the low-rise traditional houses that surround it – but what it lacks in architectural charm it more than makes up for with a prime location. Just a few minutes’ walk from Kandy Lake and 15 minutes from the city centre, the hotel has a rooftop pool and modern rooms with great views of the green hills of Kandy.

3. The Radh Hotel

Hotel

The Radh Hotel
Courtesy of The Radh Hotel / Booking.com

Location, location, location: this hotel in Kandy is just an elephant’s stride from the key city sights, including the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, the Old Royal Palace and the World Buddhist Museum. Rooms are warm-hued with modern touches, such as leather headboards and plush arm chairs. There’s no main swimming pool, but garden suites come with private plunge pools.

4. Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge

Lodge, Glamping

Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge
Courtesy of Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge / Booking.com

The Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge is just under an hour from Kandy, nestled within the scenic Knuckles Mountain Range. Rest in charming tents which feature all the luxuries and comforts of solid buildings, including ensuite bathrooms and wifi access. From the dazzling terrace or the infinity pool you can enjoy magnificent views over the surrounding hills and lush greenery. The property also features an intimate fine dining restaurant serving a variety of dishes made using organic vegetables from the hotel garden. Trekking and day trips to the local tea factory, plus romantic campfires can be arranged upon request.

5. Helga's Folly

Hotel

Helga’s Folly is without doubt the most extraordinary hotel in Kandy, characterised by quirky decor and eclectic architectural styles. Offering 35 uniquely decorated rooms, the labyrinthine hotel is filled with paintings, vivid colours, family portraits and temple relics, illuminated by dripping candles in every corner. A walk through the garden feels like you have stepped into A Midsummer Night’s Dream, with wild monkeys and birds moving through the confines and a glistening pool surrounded by fairy statues. If you’re in luck, enjoy an evening with the charming hostess herself, who is always happy to share her adventures.

6. The Elephant Stables

Hotel

The Elephant Stables
Courtesy of The Elephant Stables / Booking.com

With a tranquil atmosphere, this colonial bungalow was lovingly restored and is surrounded by the lush jungles of Kandy. This hotel offers a marvellous outdoor pool and even a library, in which visitors can browse an extensive collection before retreating to one of the comfortable lounge chairs to enjoy the exotic panorama. The charming guestrooms are decorated in warm tones with wooden accents, equipped with all the amenities you’ll want, from air conditioning to a minibar and flat-screen TVs. Under the watchful eyes of master chef Indika, the restaurant serves delicious Sri Lankan, Thai and international dishes.

7. Kandy City Hotel by Earl's

Hotel

Kandy City Hotel by Earls
Courtesy of Kandy City Hotel by Earl's / Booking.com

The Kandy City Hotel is ideal if you’re looking for upscale comfort at an affordable price. With a central location near the railway station, it provides easy access to all the main sights. The building dates back to the 18th century when it served as a tea room; the recently refurbished rooms have been decorated in modern designs with warm, wooden features, ensuite bathrooms, air conditioning and a TV. Three luxury suites are available which include private balconies. Enjoy a tasty meal in the onsite restaurant with culinary influences from Sri Lanka, Asia and Europe, browse the souvenir shop or rent a bicycle or car to venture into the nearby mountains.

8. Anna Shanthi Villa

Hotel

Anna Shanthi Villa
Courtesy of Anna Shanthi Villa / Expedia

Situated near Kandy Lake, the seven rooms of Anna Shanthi Villa are fitted with ensuite bathrooms and air conditioning; the tasteful decor makes it hard to believe this hotel comes at a reasonable price. You’ll be greeted with freshly brewed tea in the morning and can retreat to the immaculate garden area to marvel at the surroundings. In the dining room, international and Sri Lankan dishes can be tasted, and the incredibly accommodating service assists with any queries and wishes.

9. Richmond House

Hotel

Richmond House
Courtesy of Richmond House / Expedia

Richmond House is situated a few miles from the city in the picturesque hillsides. The colonial villa reflects the grandeur of a bygone era while skilfully incorporating modern luxuries. From ancient artefacts to comfortable beds and an elegant lobby, the hotel offers a magnificent refuge from the stresses of your daily routine. It’s hard not to get comfortable with its magical garden and panoramic views. The property features suites and deluxe rooms, which have all been lovingly decorated.

For more options, discover our guide to the best homestays in Sri Lanka and book now on Culture Trip.

Emma Sparks contributed additional reporting to this article.

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