Comments: This was my first visit to Sri Lanka and after spending the previous night in Colombo, we decided to go to Kandy and booked the Majestic Tourist Hotel online after reading reviews and seeing that it was a budget hotel with decent reviews. On seeing the hotel we were kind of horrified. It had a very distasteful abandoned look from the outside. After a couple of minutes of discussion, we decided to just take a look at it and decide if we should stay here or not. As soon as we entered the hotel, two boys came running and offered to carry our luggage and took us to the owner. While waiting for the owner, we saw that the inside of the hotel was not bad at all. Very well maintained and clean. After taking a look at a couple of rooms, we decided that the place was not bad at all. The owner (Mr.Joseph - who is from Kerala - and that tells me that we Malayalees are all over the world in every known profession. Did not expect a hotel owner in Kandy to be a Mal :P) was a very friendly person. A very soft spoken, yet informative individual. We checked into our room and proceeded to the roof top restaurant to have some really nice Sri Lankan tea where we had an in depth conversation with regards to Sri Lanka and its people with Mr.Joseph. Overall the hotel is good for a budget traveller visiting Kandy. It is about 1.6 kilometres from the Kandy lake and a little over 2 kilometres to the Temple of the Tooth. Either ways Kandy is a very small town and you can access all the main sightseeing spots by foot (we did). The service provided by the people working here is awesome. They try and accommodate every need that you might have with a smile. Hats off to them for that. In this trip, which went on for 8 days, my taste buds really did not agree to the Sri Lankan cuisine. I love spicy food, but to these guys, extremely spicy is normal. The food I had from a restaurant in the city had me breathing fire all over the place. The next day, I had lunch at the hotel and that was the best meal I had in the whole trip. Devilled Chicken curry with Rice followed by a fruit salad with ice cream. The curry and rice was awesome. Really loved it. If you're planning to go here, order this, inform them that you don't want it to be too spicy. There are no activities as such at the hotel. But they do organise sight seeing trips for guests around the Cultural Triangle Area (Anuradhapura, Dambulla, Sigiriya etc) and of course, Kandy too. Another aspect is that you can access the internet through WiFi and this is a free service provided by the hotel. Apart from that, important info that travellers to Kandy would need is as below:
Tuk Tuks - you can avoid using them unless it is an absolute emergency. It is expensive and hardly any of them have meters.
Night life - Almost zero. Almost everything closes by 8.
Entry Fees - Everywhere. Temple of the Tooth is LKR1200. Entrance to the Buddha Statue that overlooks the town is LKR200.
Kandian Dance - A must visit. Showcases about 10 Sri Lankan dance forms and closes with people walking on live flames. This would cost you LKR500. But a must watch. Happens every evening at 5:30. Try and go early to get front row seats.
The Pub - A very nice pub with good music. Think it is the only one in town. A very nice place not very far from the Temple of the Tooth.
There are no motor bikes or bicycles for rent here. But you can explore the town on foot itself.