Kataragama Perahera and the Fire Walking Festival


The Kataragama Perahera is an annual festival which last up to two weeks in July or August at the Kataragama shrine. The festival held in honour of the warrior God Skanda – the Lord Kataragama. It is believed that Skanda rested on the mountain at Katharagama after defeating an army of demons. In the past, accessibility to the shrine was very limited and being able to visit the shrine was considered a great honor. The highlights of the festival is the fire dances and fire walkers, also the perehara depicts Hindu folklore, traditional drummers, whip crackers and various dance troupes including extreme acts such some swing from hooks that pierce their skin. All rituals and performance passes generation to generation and everything done to honor God Skanda for saving their lives.

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