We left Habarana after breakfast to Kandy by bus. We requested the B&B to organise a tuk-tuk to pick us up from the B&B and dropped us to the bus stop to Kandy. Of course, we could've walk. It is within walking distance, even with our luggage maybe within max 30 minutes? We decided to be a little luxury and got ourselves a tuk-tuk. The bus stop to Kandy is across the road from a mini market (uggh, I can't seem to recall the name of the shop, I'm sorry!).
Nobody really goes with the bus number but there will be a sign on the bus that indicate that it is going to Kandy. Else, one could do the reliable old fashion way of asking the bus conductor! Bus from Habarana to Kandy cost LKR 125 / ~AUD 1.10 / ~USD 0.85 and take about 3.5 to 4 hours.
Before going to Sri Lanka, I have had plans to bring a medium size suitcase because I would go back to Malaysia thereafter. Going back to Malaysia means carrying gifts home, etc but one fine night a pin dropped and the little brain of mine suddenly realised that lugging a medium size suitcase might not be the most brilliant idea. I even went to the length of emailing Diana (who seems to have stop blogging :(, as she had just visited Sri Lanka) if it was doable.
Anyway, long story short, it could be a hassle but if you are capable of carrying the suitcase up and down the train, it is possible to do so. As for buses, I've found out that one could ask the bus conductor if we could deposit our bag in the luggage area (access from the back of bus). Of course this would mean that you would need to be "friends" with the bus conductor as you would need his kind assistance to retrieve your luggage later. The good bus conductor would also help to look out for a seat for you. He asked a man to move seat so that my friend and I could sit next to each other. Very kind of him.
As we arrived in Kandy, I went up to the front of the bus to ask the conductor where do we get off. He spoke to the driver and told me to follow him. As the bus slowed down (not stopped, just slowed down), he got off the bus and because he told to follow him, I jumped off a moving bus too. He opened the door to where our luggage was and took out mine. Then the bus started moving faster, so the three of us (the conductor, my friend and I) started running after the bus. = ="" Anyway, the bus stopped and we got our luggage and welcome to Kandy!
Kandy was our getaway to the Hill Country, most probably the same with many people. The weather was noticeably cooler than the Cultural Triangle. It is also the last independent capital of the Sinhalese. There is a lake right in the middle of the city.
We stayed 2 nights in Kandy, the hostel is by the main road and could be a little noisy, though that also mean it is quite a strategic location. Day 1 was as per the title - lazy day. It was spent wandering about, eating and shopping. The hostel owner recommended a happy, cheap place for lunch. It was located at a car park near KCC (Kandy City Centre) a shopping centre.
|Hoppers and vade (donut looking ones)|
|Some kind of roti made from rice flour|
Then we walked around KCC and bought some stuff, and we ate again. We decided to try one of the recommended restaurant from Rough Guide, it was a disappointment. It could possibly the worst meal we had in Sri Lanka. It is the first restaurant on the list on Rough Guide, version November 2012, restaurant name starts with 'D'. We decided to try the more local food, hence the below. Cost for 3 dishes and milk tea each: LKR 1,314 / ~ AUD 12 / ~USD 9.
|Stir fry kankung (water spinach) - In Malaysia, we spell it as kangkung|
|Kottu - I think we ordered egg kottu|
Side note: Kottu is a Sinhalese dish made of chopped roti (similar like paratha/roti canai but more chewy), then stir fry with vegetables, egg or meat.