Festivals

There is never a month in Sri Lanka without a festival.
Pilgrimage to Sri Pada
dhannush de costa
By Time Out editors |
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December marks many significant festivals including the Feast of St Xavier’s, Feast of St Lucia’s, Unduvap Full Moon Poya Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas, Blessings for the New Year at Gangaramaya Temple and Pilgrimage to Sri Pada.

Feast of St Xavier’s
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Feast of St Xavier’s

December 2 – 9

The annual feast of the quaint church commemorates the service of St Francis Xavier in his time dedicated as a mis- sionary. Situated in the centre of Nuwara Eliya, the feast attracts large crowds of devotees to seek blessings. The feast begins with the hoisting of the flag on the 2nd. Vespers service takes place on 8th.

Feast of St Lucia’s
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Feast of St Lucia’s

December 9

Throughout the duration of the annual Feast of St Lucia’s, many devotees visit the church to invoke blessings. A trilin- gual mass is held on the 9th morning, followed by a procession in the evening. The Vespers services takes place on the 8th

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Unduvap Full Moon Poya Day
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Unduvap Full Moon Poya Day

December 22

Unduvap is the last full moon poya of the year. Buddhists commemorate the arrival of Sangamitta Theri with the sacred Bo Sapling from the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi in Bodh Gaya.

Christmas Eve and Christmas
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Christmas Eve and Christmas

December 24 and 25

The entire island celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ. On Christmas Eve and on Christmas day, Christians attend church and spend the day with family and friends. The streets and homes are adorned with Christmas trees and vibrant seasonal decorations to reflect the festive joy.

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Blessings for the New Year at Gangaramaya Temple
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Blessings for the New Year at Gangaramaya Temple

December 31

Devotees visit the Gangaramaya Temple with families to invoke blessings for the New Year. While many other religious sites across the island also conduct prayers to welcome a prosperous and peaceful New Year.

Adam's Peak

Pilgrimage to Sri Pada

December – May, 2019

The ascent to Sri Pada (Adam’s Peak) begins this month as throngs of devotees climb the sacred mountain. The season will remain active till May, 2019.

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