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An update from Evaneos

Kataragama (Sri Lanka)

Practical information on Kataragama

  • Encounters with locals
  • Place or Religious Monument
  • Festivals
5 / 5 - One review
How to get there
6hrs by car from Colombo
When to go
In summer
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Kataragama

Anne Vergnaud Seasoned Traveller
19 written opinions

Kataragama: a holy town for the people of Sri Lanka.

My suggestion:
Visit here to watch a puja taking place.
My review

Though this destination is well-known to all the different kinds of Sri Lankan pilgrims, tourists are rare in Kataragama. Add it to your Sri Lanka itinerary.

Kataragama is a place of worship dedicated to a protector god who provides protection for just about anything: people even bring their car registration plates to be blessed here. I had the great fortune of coming here when the puja festivals were taking place, with me the only tourist present.

I watched parades of elephants and also observed the Sri Lankans presenting offerings of flowers and fruit at the feet of the statues and getting a coloured mark placed on their foreheads. I also watched them cracking open coconuts and burning the oil, taking part in parades, singing and playing music, and all in a mood of a joyful exuberance and accompanied by the smell of incense.

Offerings made for the Puja ceremony