One of the most magnificent events in the Sri Lankan Buddhist culture is the Esala Perahera held in the scenic hill country. Commencing in August from the sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic, this graceful parade circles around the city with several squads of dancers and performers. Here are some things you should know before you plan to witness this event.
Where and When?
You will have to travel to Kandy and find accommodation first, as this event takes place at night. Esala Perahera this year will take place from 14th to 24th August for a duration of 10 days. The parade will march through most streets close to the temple and will last for a few hours. It’s best to find accommodation in the heart of the city to get easy access to the event. You can find more things to do in the hill city during this time via Kandy Escapes.
Why Is It Important?
This celebration has been carried forward for centuries since the 3rd century BC as a tribute to the sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha. The festivities are said to bring good fortune to the country by bringing rainfall and a good harvest. Today, it signifies the cultures and traditions of ancient Sri Lanka and is treasured by all Sri Lankans as an iconic and significant event.
What to Expect!
The Perahera will include many performances including whip crackers, fire-breathers, jugglers, dancers, drummers, and most importantly, elephants across the country dressed in illuminating costumes, and dancing. The highlight of the parade is the golden casket that carries a replica of the Tooth Relic on top of the Maligawa Tusker. The grandeur and elegance of the event will leave an unforgettable memory in anyone’s heart!