21 October, 2017

Kandy In The Spotlight: War Behind It, Sri Lanka’s Second City Sees A Tourist Boom

On a hill directly above Kandy there is a statue of Buddha in a seated posture, palms on his lap, signifying meditation. This is far from the most important shrine in this Buddhist-majority city, or indeed an unusual sight in Sri Lanka – the country is peppered with polished white or golden statues that are visible from afar, distinctive amid vegetation. Nonetheless, its proximity to Kandy makes it a good point from which to contemplate the city – and a highly Instagrammable one.

On a scorching spring afternoon, western tourists snapped photos under the indifferent eye of Buddhist monks, while one could hear distant religious chants mixed with the sounds of 90s European dance hits at a party – a scene that pretty much represents the vertiginous change happening in Sri Lanka which, less than a decade after the traumatic civil war ended, is experiencing a tourism boom.

Read more in the Guardian

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