Snuggled in a luscious area which is approximately 5.5 kilometres away from the city of Kandy, is the stunning and charming gardens that were once a paradise used only by the royal kings.
Lofty trees, vibrant flowers and many plants both indigenous to Sri Lanka and planted by dignitaries span 147 acres. The Royal Botanical Garden has a renowned history as the beginning of this garden dates back to 1371 during the time of the ruling Sinhalese Royals. It was created during the time of King Wickramabahu III.
The king was said to have kept court at Peradeniya near the Mahaweli River which is the longest river in Sri Lanka. Once he ascended the throne, this area became his abode. After this it was the era of King Kirthi Sri and King Rajadhi Rajasinghe.
A temple was built in this vicinity which was destroyed by the British who possessed control of the Kandy Kingdom in 1815.
During the British rule, Alexander Moon undertook the groundwork and development of the botanical gardens in 1821 with the use of this landscape for coffee and cinnamon cultivation plants.
History says in 1843 it was originally established as the Botanical Garden at Peradeniya. In 1844, under the supervision and guidance of the superintendent George Gardener, the Royal Botanical Garden began to be independent and expanded and continued to be run by the British until independence in 1948.
It is famous for its rich diversity of orchids for it is home to more than 4000 species of plants which are orchid species, medicinal plants and palm trees. The availability of The National Herbarium of Sri Lanka is yet another attraction.
The tropical timber trees, palm trees, the giant bamboo of Burma and the Cannonball tree which has waxy pink flowers and fruit, the double palm tree from the Seychelles, the Javan fig trees which are said to be so big, that they spread over an area of 19,375 square feet. They are fascinating and will leave you awestruck with its beauty.