In the ancient times, it was called "Uda Wasala Watta" meaning, "the garden situated above the royal palace". This forest in the city of Kandy not only boasts of a large collection of flora and fauna but also has some important religious sites. This Royal Forest Park was established as a forest reserve in 1856 and in 1938 it was declared as a Sanctuary. In the forest, there is a cave dwelling Senkanda Gala, which was home to a brahmin. It also has some three meditation hermitage. The forest also has a pond which was used by the royal family for bathing. There are 460 varieties of plants including trees and lianas are found here. This forest is also known for birdwatching. Around 9 plants and 80 bird species which are found here are native to this region. Leeches are also abundant here in the wet season therefore it is advisable to go well prepared.