There are many nations and religions in Sri Lanka and they are spending peaceful phase as a country. So many festivals are celebrated in Sri Lanka. Many visitors are fond of watching them and enjoying.
1) Sinhala & Tamil New Year
The Sinhala and Tamil New Year is celebrated on April 13th-14th. It is an important festival for Sri Lankan people because it isn’t celebrated in any other country as a national festival and a time to for enjoyment and a time to show love and affection to elders. This special time when families get-together. In this festival, the time is spent playing games, visiting friends and relatives, enjoying the many sweetmeats which are made for the occasion, and generally having a great time. So if you get a chance to visit Sri Lanka on April month, you will get a lot of fun activities such as playing New Year games, eating New Year sweetmeats…..etc.
Vesak is a religious and cultural festival in Sri Lanka. It is celebrated on the month of May. This festival is a very beautiful festival because all the area of Sri Lanka is decorated with Vesak lanterns, flags, and Vesak decorations. In these days people organize “Dansal” that gives free meals like fried rice, cool drinks, ice cream, noodles, bread…etc. As well as you can see many Vesak activities in this festival.
3) Kandy Esala Perahara
The Kandy Esala perahara, is one of the grandest and famous of all Buddhist festivals in Sri Lanka. It is held in the full moon month of Esala (July or August). This festival consists of many traditional items such as whip crackers, flag bearers, so many groups of dancers, drummers, tuckers,…etc. As well as there are hundreds of elephants that can be seen in the perahera. So I think, you must watch it because it is so beautiful.
Deepavali is one of the biggest festivals for Sri Lankan Tamils. Deepavali also known as Diwali. It means ‘festival of lights’. Deepavali or Diwali is celebrated on October or November and is a very popular and eagerly waited festival. This festival associated with a legend. It is said that this festival is celebrated to mark lord Rama’s victory over Demon king, Ravana. It is decorated with many lanterns, lamp…etc. and lot of traditional activities so it is very beautiful festival.
5) Maha Shivaratri Day
Shivaratri is celebrated on February or March in every year. It is the grand night dedicated to worship lord Shiva. As well as in this day Shiva was married to the goddess Parvati. There are lot of dancing items and music items in this day therefore it can be enjoyed well.
This is another festival Sri Lankans celebrate. All Christians in Sinhalese,Tamils and Burghers celebrate this day very well in Sri Lanka. You will be seeing midnight masses in most of the Sri Lankan churches, decorated houses and fireworks on 24th midnight. On 25th, you will be seeing variety of celebrations and people visiting houses, and parties on this day.
7) Eid-Ul-Fitr (Ramadhan Festival)
A big festival for Muslims in Sri Lanka (in fact, all Muslims around the world). 30 days fasting during the holy month of Ramadan ends with Eid-Ul-Fitr festival. People celebrate this function by wearing new clothes, visiting others and exchange blessings and wishes. The celebration continues by preparing great meals and celebrate with relatives and friends.
These are the famous festivals in Sri Lanka that you must see and participate if you get the chance. Do let us know if we miss any other major festivals in Sri Lanka that should be mentioned here.