Millennium Elephant Foundation

The Hill Country

The Millennium Elephant Foundation houses elephants rescued from aggressive mahouts, and elephants retired from working in temples. Be aware that though elephants are well-cared for here they are chained for quite long periods and elephant rides are offered; we recommend against these because of the harm they can cause to the elephants. Volunteers are welcome at the foundation. It's two kilometres from Pinnewala, on the Karandupona–Kandy road.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby The Hill Country attractions

1. Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage

1.88 MILES

Initially created to protect abandoned or orphaned elephants, this is one of Sri Lanka’s most popular attractions. It's a highly commercialised experience…

2. Gadaladeniya Temple

11.97 MILES

This Buddhist temple with a Hindu annex dates from the 14th century, and the main shrine room contains a stunningly beautiful, gilded seated Buddha. Built…

3. Lankatilake Temple

12.58 MILES

This impressive 14th-century temple, mounted on a rocky bluff, is the most imposing in the region. It's divided into two halves – one half Buddhist and…

4. Embekka Devale

13.12 MILES

Dedicated to the worship of the Hindu deity Mahasen, this beautiful temple, with its finely carved wooden pillars depicting swans, eagles, wrestling men…

5. Athagala

14.52 MILES

An atmospheric rock-cut staircase winds up Athagala, a large black rock outcrop on the eastern side of the city, to offer fine city views from a 22m-tall…

6. Peradeniya Botanic Gardens

14.53 MILES

These stunning gardens were once reserved exclusively for Kandyan royalty. Today, even commoners are allowed in to enjoy the most impressive and largest …

7. Kandy War Cemetery

15.66 MILES

This small and beautifully melancholic cemetery is maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. It is the final resting place for those who died…

8. Ceylon Tea Museum

17.09 MILES

This museum occupies the 1925-vintage Hantane Tea Factory, 4km south of Kandy on the Hantane road. Abandoned for more than a decade, it was recently…