he most prominent gardens in Sri Lanka, Royal Botanical Gardens are situated 5 km west of Kandy. Colourful orchids, pleasant winds, tall trees. and proximity with the Mahaweli river is a beautiful “flora and aqua” treat for the eyes. The gardens are home to more than 4000 species of plants, including orchids, spices, medicinal plants and palm trees. It is a 147 acre - natural elegance holding landscaped gardens and scenic beauty, making it a photographers dream.
The Hakgala Botanical Garden is the second largest botanical garden in Sri Lanka. It is a part of the Hakgala Strict Nature Reserve and was established in 1861. It has a wide variety of plants and some exotic animal species with the entire garden divided into different sections, dedicated to different plant species, like ferns, cacti, orchids, etc. It is situated on the Badulla Highway and is about 5 kilometres away from the city of Nuwara Eliya.
This place has a vast collection of endemic plants and thus, serves as a research and conservation center as well. The 106-acre garden is situated on the Puwakpitiya – Thummodara Road, Illukowita, close to the Indikada Mukalana Forest Reserve. There is also a stream that flows through the garden, providing irrigation water for the wet zone plants at the Seethawaka Wet Zone Botanic Gardens.
The 300-acre Mirijjawila Botanical Garden on the Colombo-Kataragama Road is a dry-zone. However, with the construction of three reservoirs - Kohombagas Wewa, Demataththa Wewa and Malitthangas Wewa, has made the preservation of moisture in this area possible. Battery vehicles facilitate visitor exploration of this enormous attraction.
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The 143-year old Gampaha Botanical Garden also known as Henarathgoda Botanical Garden is located in Gampaha. Visitors can enjoy boat-rides offered at the Attanagalu Oya whereas the endemic plant and animal species are another reason to visit the garden. The Orchid Garden housing the Queen of Orchids, Japanese Garden, Palms Garden and Medicinal Garden bloom the best during the monsoon season.
The Dry Zone Botanical Garden also known as the Mirijjawila Botanical Garden is located between the Hambantota Harbour and Mattala International Airport. The garden has been established with the purpose of maintaining the dry-zone plants and facilitating further research on them.
The Sirilak Spice and Herbal Botanical Garden located in Matale houses various spice plants. In addition to witnessing these plants, visitors also learn more about their medicinal benefits through guided tours. There are shops inside the garden selling organic herbs and spices as well.
So, next time when you visit Sri Lanka do visit these pleasant botanical gardens in Sri Lanka.