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Restore and renovate Buddhist Temples in Kandy in Sri Lanka on a gap year and career break with Budget Volunteering


Volunteering, gap year and career break in Sri Lanka

Restore, rebuild and renovate Buddhist temples in local communities in and around Kandy. This is a unique and fascinating opportunity to assist community development and learn about Sri Lankan construction using traditional manual methods, without using modern machinery.

Work includes renovation, repainting temples, cleaning in and around temples; interacting with children and villagers and helping the Temples arrange Community Centres for the village youths. You'll also assist with the restoration of paintings and sculptures inside the temples.


PRICES Please see the Prices Page - prices for all projects and all lengths are listed and you can also choose which currency you'd like to see them in.
Start Dates All year round - you choose your start and finish dates. Projects start every Monday.
Duration 2 weeks to 12 weeks or longer, subject to visa requirements
Requirements Minimum age 18, no qualifications necessary (just a good dose of enthusiasm).
What's included Accommodation
Meeting you at Colombo Airport
Transfer to your accommodation
Transport to and from your project
Full pre-departure support
Local in-country team support and backup
24-hr emergency support.
What's not included
  • Flights,
  • Insurance,
  • Cost of Visas (if a visa is required),
  • Return transfer to the airport at the end of your placement.

Restore and renovate Buddhist Temples in Kandy in Sri Lanka on a gap year and career break with Budget Volunteering


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Our programme runs in Kandy, one of the most scenic cities of Sri Lanka located amidst the hills. It's also home to the Famous Temple of the Tooth.

You'll help to rebuild and renovate Buddhist temples using traditional manual methods. The work is extremely varied with lots of opportunities to learn new skills. You can get involved with:

  • Renovation and maintenance of a range of temples

  • Painting and renovating, both inside the temples themselves and structures in the grounds of the temples.

  • Restoring old statues, sculptures and paintings to help bring them back to their former glory.

  • Assisting the staff in the temples to arrange community centres which help the youth in the community.

  • Cleaning and tending the grounds in and around the temples

This is a fantastic project for anyone who looking for something a little different, getting their hands dirty and getting involved with the local community, especially if you're artistic and have handyman skills. You'll help to bring back the lost glory of these ancient temples such that more and more people come to visit these forgotten temples and to create and aesthetically educative ambience for children at schools.

Hours of work are generally from Monday to Friday, 9.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m.

You may also have the opportunity to provide help and support to the local community through the various other activities we have to offer. This is optional, but another excellent way to immerse yourself in the Sri Lanka culture, but most importantly to give a caring hand to the local community. The activities could range from helping out in the following areas:

  • Babies Orphanage - Care for around 15–20 babies, all of whom are below 12 months old. You'll help to prepare baby food and feed babies, help the staff clean beds, change nappies, bed sheets and pillows and help keep the area clean and sterile.

  • Womens’ Project – Volunteer at shelters for women between 8-25 years who have been physically and mentally abused. Most of these women are very shy, introverted and unwilling to relate to others. Our previous volunteers have been successful in building up trust and in encouraging them to come out and relate to others. (Please Note: Volunteering at the women's project is open only to female participants).

  • Elders’ Home – The Elders Home provides free food, shelter and medical facilities to 75 adults, both male and female, aged between 50 to 80 years. You'll help care for the elderly by helping to wash them; spending time with them – listening and talking; keeping them occupied by playing with them or reading to them. You'll also help the staff to clean the home and prepare food. If required, you may also attend to sick elders by giving them medicines, etc.

  • Orphan Care – This project works with two boys’ Orphanages that care for orphans between 4 and 18 years. You'll teach the children English, help them with their homework, play games with them, assist the staff and also help in painting and renovation work within the Orphanage.

These are just a few ideas and it may be that some volunteers will have more ideas that will help to continue to make this project a worthwhile one, that will benefit the community for a long time to come


You'll start your project with an Introduction week to help you settle into the culture so that you grow comfortable with your surroundings. The Introduction week in Kandy is the best way to embrace Sri Lanka. During this week we will ...

  • Explain the do’s and don’ts regarding safety and transport.
  • Additionally you'll get acquainted with Buddhism, the mysterious mythology behind this culture.
  • You'll visit a few temples, including the Temple of the Tooth.
  • We will enrich your experience with language sessions to be able to talk to the locals.
  • You'll get to know how a traditional Ayurvedic massage feels like.
  • You'll also witness an ancient Kandyan dance performance and, last but not least,
  • You'll get to look, smell and taste Sri Lankan’s cuisine during the cooking sessions.


As a result of your volunteer work, the community benefit directly or indirectly as follows
  • They get the opportunity to interact and learn about foreign cultures
  • They have access to your invaluable help and assistance
  • They improve their own traditional knowledge, skills and ideas on renovation work as these will be supplemented by any initiatives that you and other volunteers come up with
  • The restoration of the Temples is progressed much quicker and better than it would have been without your help, and as these temples are so important to their culture, this achievement is invaluable to them.

This is an amazing opportunity to gain a greater appreciation of the Sri Lankan culture and the temples that hold spiritual significance through interacting with the local community.

This is a fantastic project for anyone who looking for something a little different, getting their hands dirty and getting involved with the local community, especially if you're artistic and have handyman skills.

Restore and renovate Buddhist Temples in Kandy in Sri Lanka on a gap year and career break with Budget Volunteering

Restore and renovate Buddhist Temples in Kandy in Sri Lanka on a gap year and career break with Budget Volunteering

Restore and renovate Buddhist Temples in Kandy in Sri Lanka on a gap year and career break with Budget Volunteering

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All accommodation in Kandy is included during your stay on our programme within the schedules/ itineraries provided. Living is comfortable and all volunteer houses and home stays have electricity and running water. Accommodation at the Volunteer House in Kandy comprises of dormitory style, shared rooms.

Private rooms and double rooms can be requested, plus there is also the option of staying with a local Sri Lankan family (home stay accommodation) in Kandy, but noth these options are subject to surcharges. Please speak to your Project Co-ordinator when making your booking.

Meals will be provided three times a day during the week and twice during the weekend (breakfast and lunch combine to become brunch during the weekend). Breakfast is self-service with toast, fruits, tea and coffee.

Sri Lankan foods include roti bread, dal (Lentil Soup) and curries, vegetables, salads, milk and yogurt. Meat is rarely eaten, except on festive occasions.

Weekends are free to relax, and to explore the local area.

Dry Season (December to April) where the temperature is between 22°C to 30°C.
Monsoon (May to August) with the temperature ranging between 25°C to 29°C.
Inter-monsoon (September to November) where the temperature lies between 24°C and 29°C.

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Restore and renovate Buddhist Temples in Kandy in Sri Lanka on a gap year and career break with Budget Volunteering


Sri Lanka has miles and miles of amazing beaches. Some of our favourites are:

MIRISSA: Perhaps a contender for the most beautiful beach in the world. Long, deserted and hot. You know you have got away from it all as you sit and watch the sunset over this horizon…The snorkelling is also incredible here.

NEGOMBO: To the north of Colombo lies Negombo, a busting fishing town with golden beaches and a pallet of colour provided by sails and boats against the deep blue of the ocean. 

UNAWATUNA: A sleepy peaceful cove with deep still water and a temple overlooking the bay from the protecting cliffs.

HIKKADUWA: A long stretch of beach with plenty of hostels, restaurants and some nice bars, not forgetting the impromptu beach parties held on the beach front bars blaring Bob Marley, Eric Clapton, Led Zeplin and many other classics! Sri Lanka is a conservative island brimming with culture and Hikkaduwa offers an exciting opportunity to holiday for the odd celebratory weekend! Many a volunteer birthday has been seen in over Hikkaduwa cocktails. You can also body board and even surf on this beach.

ARUGAM BAY: This tiny fishing village is Sri Lanka’s newest hot spot and hosts the best surfing and an easy going happy party atmosphere. With its wide sweeping beach in front of the village and year round gorgeous swimming it is no surprise that this bay has developed into a low budget travellers haunt.

"Thank you for the experience you gave me, it was stunning and a memory that always always always
brings me warmth"
Tim Hancock

White Water Rafting:Sri Lanka’s boulder stream rivers are the ideal setting for white water rafting. This is the best way to see the stunning environment what this region has to offer. Many tours are available and many begin with days of action, rafting the white waters. This high adventure is suitable for fish time ‘go for it’ rafters and experts alike.  Rafting has become a very popular exciting yet safe adventure sport option.

Rock Climbing and Mountaineering: Mountaineering is an adventure sport that requires skills and levels of fitness that few other adventure sports can match. The mountain ranges have breath taking, enthralling, climbing routes.

Hiking and Trekking: Trekking is an excellent way to explore a country, people, their traditions and beliefs. Paths and campsites have been set up to give nature lovers the experience of a lifetime.

Canoeing & Kayaking: This relatively new sport is rated as the most adventurous of all adventure sports. It involves descending a stream as it drops over waterfalls and boulders. In Sri Lanka they have low waterfalls for beginners and some as high as 700 feet for the very experienced - all surrounded by breathtaking scenery.

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