Kandy Perahera Festival of Sri Lanka

(Last Updated On: June 20, 2022)

The annual Kandy Festival in Sri Lanka is one of the most important Buddhist festivals around leading up to the full moon in August. Take a look at this amazing video, comprised of still images from the various parades and dances that take place in the streets of Kandy.


Kandy Perahera Festival from Ian Lloyd on Vimeo.

The story of Kandy Perahera Festival

Legend has it that after his cremation in the 5th Century BC, one of Buddha’s subjects took a tooth from the funeral pyre and smuggled it to Sri Lanka in the hair of an Orissan princess. Upon finding out that relic of such importance was being hidden on the island, King Megavanna paraded the tooth through the streets for all to see. These days, the relic rests in the Temple of the Tooth (more on that in an upcoming guest post) and a replica casket is employed for the duration of the festival.

A mighty elephant carries the golden casket through the streets as revellers dance, sing and perform devotional acts to the sound of the booming drums. The loudest and most impressive parade takes place on the final night, and by the next morning preparations are already under way for the following year’s celebrations.

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