Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Kandy's Esala Perahera

Kandy, Sri Lanka - We ended up going to the Perahera festival on two nights including the final night. It was quite interesting and spectacular to see though it turned out the 2 nights were 99% the same. There was about a hundred elephants in the parade plus dancers and musicians and other assorted performers.

People started to line up on the sidewalk about noon for a parade that wouldn't start until almost 8pm. We were lucky enough to buy tickets (not cheap!) that allowed us to watch from a second floor balcony above the chaos. We also got dinner out of the deal which was good.

The Perahera was definitely interesting to see but it was long. We had to get to our restaurant around 4pm in order to make it through the checkpoints and people to even see the parade and then the parade lasted around 4 hours.

There was a lot of talk that this year's Perahera was bigger than usual with a larger audience than normal due to the end of the 30 year civil war in Sri Lanka in May. We can attest to the fact that it was packed with people!

1 comment:

Esala Perahara said...

Esala Perahara in Kandy, Sri Lanka is one legendary festival of Skanda & Buddha since 300 AD. A devout to both hindu & Buddhist idols, there is a procession with entertainments like canons, whips, performers, drums, rings, rituals, fire throwing & sword fights. But the most embellished elephants - symbol of fertility & fortune, carry Buddhist monks, temple VIPs & sacred antiques.