Esala Perahera festival 2021 August 14-24 | Download Images, Photos and Quotes

Esala Perahera festival

Are you excited about attending any Buddhist festivals? This article tells you about Esala Perahera, a Buddhist festival that is celebrated in Sri Lanka. This festival is celebrated every year in the early summer in the city of Kandy which is the heartland of Sri Lanka.

The Esala Perahera is also known as Kandy Perahera or Dalada Perahera. Esala Perahera features many dancers, fire-breathers, musicians,  jugglers, and lavishly decorated elephants.


The Esala is a fusion of two separate but interconnected "Peraheras," which means Processions. The Esala and Dalada. The Esala Perahera, which is assumed to date back to the 3rd century BC, was a ritual that was conducted to request the Gods for rainfall. 

The Dalada Perahera is believed to have begun when the Sacred Tooth Relic of Buddha was delivered to Sri Lanka from India during the 4th century CE, eight hundred years after the death of Lord Buddha. According to tradition, the Tooth Relic of Buddha was taken in procession by Princess Hemamala & Prince Dantha in Sri Lanka. 

It is also said that Upali Thera, a Thai Theravada monk who is the founder of Siam Nikaya order of Buddhism in Srilanka, took many efforts to celebrate this festival. This procession was originally focused on honor to Hindu deities, particularly those incorporated into Sri Lankan Buddhism. 

Upali Thera believed this to be inappropriate in a Buddhist nation, and he influenced the king to declare that "Henceforth Gods and men are to follow the Buddha."

Facts about this festival are 

The entire city will be silent before this festival starts. When a thundering noise of cannon fire is heard from the temple, it symbolizes that the festival has begun. Then finally devotees begin the procession from the temple of the tooth and pass through the streets of Kandy.

Musicians in silken white robes and bright red sashes sing exotic songs wonderfully as dancers and acrobats whirl, performing beautiful dances. Finally, you see the priests and, therefore, the temple servants, amid richly decorated elephants form a fantastic finale to the magical Kandy festival.

As a part of the ritual, the sacred tooth relic of Buddha is carried through the Kandy city streets, which is completed with exceptional panache. This is often considered together of the foremost beautiful pageants within Asia.

There are four other Hindu origin shrines present near Sri Dalada Maligawa, the temple of tooth. They are the Natha Devale, the Vishnu Devale, the Katharagama Devale and the Pattini Devale, the goddess. Each of them sends their procession during the Perahera, to hitch forces with the most pageant within the Kandy festival.

Every year, the Kandy festival begins on the new moon day. The five main temples of Kandy are decorated, and every night, one among the temples becomes the most attractive one with exciting processions happening from the temple premises.

Five nights after the Kumbal Perahera, Randolis, the idols of Gods, travel through the town lit up by torches in ornate gold palanquins.

Hours before the Maha Randoli Perahera starts most the roadsides,  upstairs windows, rooftops, balconies, and even roofs are filled with spectators, both local and foreign. Kandy Perahera begins generally after the sunset, at around 6.30 p.m. to 7.00 p.m. in the evening. 

Queens Hotel, Yatinuwara Veediya, Dalada Veediya,  are some of the best places which offer you the best view of the Esala Perahera. The Day Perahera is often viewed from the D. S. Senanayake Street and therefore King Street. The procession happens for about 4-5 hours, continuously.

So this is all about the Esala Perahera festival. I hope that you found this article interesting. If you have any thoughts to share about this festival, kindly share it on the comment section.

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Esala Perahera festival 2021 August 14-24 | Download Images, Photos and Quotes Esala Perahera festival 2021 August 14-24 | Download Images, Photos and Quotes Reviewed by sanju on July 17, 2020 Rating: 5

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