Kandy Perehera - Kandy Procession
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Kandy Esala Perahera– The Great Kandy Pageant in August.
The night is beautiful!
The Kandy Town, bathed in dazzling and decorative lights is beautiful!!
All vantage points are brimming with people. Yet, they are Silent.

Except for the low hum of whispering of some, they are silent. Then, the hum increases.

It is evident that the waiting is finally over.

Arrival, before their eyes, of the Grandest Pageant of all Sri Lanka, - The Kandy Perehera, is imminent.
Everyone tries to listen over the increasing hum.

Then, they here it!

The cracking of the whips, signaling - the same way they have done for centuries - the arrival of the Sri Lankan Perehera. The enchanting rhythmical throb of the drums accompanied by equally fascinating tunes flowing from the flutes will not only hold you spellbound till the end but will definitely make your feet do a slow motion jig. The Kandy Perehera, Sri Lanka 's most colourful, the most enchanting and the most fascinating pageant or the religious ceremony of Asia and perhaps the entire world is unfolding in front of you. The hundreds of Copra Torches carried along the Perehera from beginning to the end will take you to a wonderland. And, in this wonderland you will witness thousands of participants - Flag Bearers, Drummers, numerous Dancers including hundreds of the famous Kandyan Dancers, Actors, Acrobats all performing to their best, Officials, Chiefs of various Devalas (Nilames) headed of course by the ‘Nilame' - the Guardian of the ‘Palace of the Tooth Relic' so on and so forth, all in their brilliantly colourful costumes.

In this enchanting Perehera, what will attract you most is the presence of over a hundred Elephants clad in beautiful garments decorated by multitudes of glittering electric bulbs walking peacefully and elegantly amidst the other performers. The cynosure of all the Perehera no doubt, is the Majestic Elephant of the ‘Palace of the Tooth Relic' in its full regalia majestically and gracefully treading to the rhythm of the drums carrying the Tooth Relic, Sri Lanka's most revered relic, enshrined in a golden casket.
Sacred Tooth Relic
With the advent of the Buddha’s Tooth Relic In the 4th century AD the Political history as well as the cultural history in Sri Lanka underwent major changes. The King Megghawanna, when he heard that, the Relic was in Sri Lanka, immediately took possession of the Relic, took the Relic to the Palace and placed the Relic on the Throne. He then built a beautiful Palace to enshrine the Relic and made all the arrangements, to safeguard the Relic, to pay homage to the Relic, Expose the Relic to the people once a year and organize a Perehera to mark the ceremony. From that day onwards till this day the Perehera parades the streets except for the troubled times. Even the world famous traveler Bikkhu Fahian who traveled to SL in the 5th century AD has written a vivid description about the beauty of the Perehera in his records.
Dalada Maligawa - The ‘Palace / Temple of the Tooth Relic’
The ‘Palace of the Tooth Relic’ or as some call it ‘The Temple of the Tooth’ or as the Sri Lankans call it the “Dalada Maligawa” originally built as two storied and later made three storied by the same King was built next to the King’s Palace in the late 15th century. This Palace after undergoing many repairs, renovations and innovations, still stands today proudly and majestically when all one can see of the King’s Palace are ruins except for a small part now re-erected and is a museum. The latest innovation to the ‘Palace of the Tooth Relic’ is the golden canopy constructed over the Relic Chamber in the 1980’s.
Kandy, no doubt is beautiful place with a mild climate but those probably were not the only reasons why the then King chose it as his Kingdom. Security would have played very important part in the decision, as Kandy was not easily accessible. Of Course, nowadays you can just get into a car and drive up to Kandy but during the olden days before these new roads came into being, the access was very difficult and any invading army could have been spotted long before they came close.

Now, the Kandy town is one of the most popular, one of the most populated and one of the best towns in the country.  Kandy, popularly called the Hill Capital, is a very picturesque area with a good climate and a good town. With the presence of the all important “Dalada Maligawa” or the ‘Palace of the Tooth Relic’ within its folds, Kandy has become very famous the world over and attracts great many tourists – local and foreign alike every day.

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