Dates: 29th July - 8th August 2017
The Kandy Esala Perahera (the Esala procession of Kandy) is one of the grandest festivals in southern Asia, and takes over 10 days in July or August (check the dates online), with the number and styles of the dancers and elephants procession increasing in size over each successive day. If you'd like to go, we can arrange tickets for you, alternatively, you could simply turn up and watch from the sidewalk, and the closer you are to the Queen's hotel going down the road straight out of the Temple of the Tooth, the better. This historical procession is held annually to pay homage to the Sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha, which is housed at the Sri Dalada Maligawa in Kandy. A unique symbol of Sri Lanka, the procession consists of many traditional local dances such as fire-dances, whip-dances, Kandyan dances and various other cultural dances, in addition to the elephants who are usually adorned with lavish garments. The festival ends with the traditional diya-kepeema ritual, a water cutting ceremony which is held at the Mahaweli River at Getambe, Kandy.