The Hanthana mountain range in Kandy is popular among those who like to go hiking, camping, bird watching and be close to nature in any way. Local songwriters, too, have lyricised the scenic beauty and tranquility of these mountains.Located 1240 m above sea level, the Hanthana mountain range stretches all the way from the Kandy city to the town of Galaha, 20 km south. The freshwater springs on the western end of Hanthana feed the waters of the Mahaweli River, and the tributaries of the river separate the individual hills of the range.In total, there are seven individual peaks, the highest being Ura kanda. The peaks offer spectacular views of Kandy city, the Knuckles range, the dolosbage range of Aranayake, and the hills of the Sabaragamuwa region, too, can be spotted from the heights of these hills.
Aside from beautiful scenery and a breathtaking panorama from its peaks, Hanthana is a favourite travel spot for many people because it is easy to explore. It is possible to reach the foot of the mountain range via the Peradeniya-Galaha road or the Kandy-Udawela road.The mountain range, which is most often hidden by mist, is favoured by local university students who know it better by the name adara kanda (mountain of love). Every year, university students from around the country make it a point to visit this mountain range.
The Peradeniya University itself is nestled on the lower slopes of the Hanthana mountain range, on a 1,080 acre stretch of land.One of the best places to visit while trekking through the hills of Hanthana is the Hanthana viharaya, which dates back to the days of the Kandyan Kingdom. Located 10 km away from Kandy City, it is the temple situated on the highest elevation in Kandy.A 500 acre plantation of pine trees belonging to the Department of Wildlife Conservation, and several forest areas close to the Ura Kanda peak, are some of the other sights which can be seen on a trip to these hills.