The majority of people staying in Sri Lanka are Hindu and Buddhist, only about 7 percent of the population is Christian. Even then the Christmas in Sri Lanka is celebrated with much passion and enthusiasm. Preparations and arrangements begin a month before Christmas. It is a time to share love, kindness, compassion, and most importantly gifts with family and friends. People in Sri Lanka are known to host lavish parties at the time of Christmas. History states that Sri Lankan customs and traditions were influenced by European Colonies from the 16th century to the 20th century, and this is how Christmas became a vital part of Sri Lankan customs and traditions.
Christmas In Sri Lanka 2019 Dates
Christmas is celebrated on the 25th of December with aplomb. Preparation for this great day begins weeks before as in other countries. Over the years, it has become one of the most celebrated festivals in Sri Lanka and people wait for it eagerly. To witness the festivities and Christmas decorations in Sri Lanka, the best time to visit is between November to January.
Things To Do On Christmas In Sri Lanka
At the dawn of 1st December, you will get up with the sound of firecrackers in Sir Lanka, which embarks the beginning of Christmas celebrations in Sri Lanka. One can witness the Christmas spirits everywhere, right from small stores to big malls you will spot Christmas trees. Here is the list of things you must do in Sri Lanka on Christmas.
- Devour Christmas Cake
- Indulge In Christmas Feast
- Experience The Midnight Mass
- Bike Riding
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1. Devour Christmas Cake
The best way to ring in the Christmas holiday in Sri Lanka is to try the lip-smacking Christmas Cake. Sri Lankan culinary has been influenced by many European Nations like the Netherlands, Portugal, and Britain. Christmas cake is available in most of the bakery and cafes. The classy cake recipe includes ingredients like mixed peel, barndy, spices, and cashew nuts.
Places To Try: Butter Boutique in Colombo, The Cake Factory in Colombo, FAB in Colombo
Christmas celebrations in Sri Lanka are incomplete without shopping in the festive markets of Galle and Colombo. There are a series of festive markets set in the country where you can purchase gifts and seasonal snacks. Markets are decorated with lights, festive music, and Christmas trees. The most popular festive markets are Galle Face Green Fair and Columbus Christmas Street. These seasonal and vibrant markets are full of delectable treats and street performers.
Things to Buy: Gems and Jewelry, Scented Candles, Sir Lankan Sarees, and Porcelain Tableware
3. Indulge In Christmas Feast
Christmas in Sri Lanka is incomplete without a delicious and wholesome meal. During the Christmas month, all the hotels and restaurants come to life with special dinners and events like live music and dance performance. Don’t forget to relish on the mouth-watering roasted turkey, mashed potato, and Christmas cake.
Famous Restaurants in Colombo: Rare at Residence, The Lagoon, Shang Palace, Fat Panda
Suggested Read: Dig Into 10 Sri Lankan Street Food Items That Are Pure Delight!
4. Experience The Midnight Mass
The Midnight Mass service takes place in St. Lucia’s Cathedral in Colombo at 11:30 pm on 24th December. The service involves singing, praying with candles, and celebrating the birth of Christ. It is the most placid way to celebrate Christmas.
Churches for Mass Services: St. Theresa’s in Colombo – Mass Services for Christmas eve at 11:50 pm, St. Andrew’s Scots Kirk – Mass Services for Christmas eve at 11:15 pm
The stunning shoreline of Sri Lanka makes for an ideal spot to learn surfing and indulge in this activity all year-round. Surfers can get their surfing boards out and get to the beach to enjoy an exciting kite-surfing session. The waves in the southern part of the island are perfect to hone your skills or learn some.
Famous surfing spots in Sri Lanka: Hikkaduwa, Unawatuna beach, Weligama, Arugam Bay
Sri Lanka is a tropical destination that has ample of national parks and green spaces where you can pitch your tents and indulge in camping. Camping in Sri Lanka is one of the most exciting things to do for Christmas celebration in Sri Lanka. You can spend your day spotting wild animals in their natural habitat and enjoy stargazing amidst the wilderness.
Famous national parks for camping: Gal Oya National Park or Yala
7. Bike Riding
Spend your Christmas day in Sri Lanka bike riding across the lush green mountains and hill escapades. The tropical weather in Sri Lanka all year-round makes for apt climatic conditions to indulge in bike riding and enjoy the countryside, criss-cross road bends and through the beautiful rice fields and tea plantations. Bike riding across the whimsical tea plantations is the ideal way to spend Christmas in Colombo.
Places To Visit On Christmas In Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka is blessed with many pristine beaches and thrilling wildlife. Experience these amazing places while holidaying in Sri Lanka on the eve of Christmas:
- Jungle Beach
- Minneriya National Park
- KK Beach (Kahanda Kanda Beach)
- Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
- Dondra Lighthouse
The best beach to spend Christmas in Sri Lanka is Bentota. The beach is famous for calm clear crystal blue waters, white shimmering sand, and fringed palms. The beach is also popular for turtle nesting as well. Spend your Christmas vacation enjoying water skiing and canoeing in a captivating beach. You will have the time of your life here.
Famous For: Whale and Shark spotting
2. Jungle Beach
Spend a relaxing vacation on the Jungle beach which is a perfect getaway to an exotic location and to celebrate Christmas in Sri Lanka. The beach also provides you with accommodation options facing the beach. One can aslo indulge in fine cuisine comprising of both local and international flavors.
Famous For: Jet Skiing and Kayaking
Suggested Read: The Complete Guide To Applying For A Sri Lanka Visa For Indians
3. Minneriya National Park
Witness the wild elephants on a jeep safari in Minneriya National Parks. On the entire day excursion, you will discover herds of elephants with many baby elephants. The wildlife park expedition is much more fun with kids, you will also encounter other animals on the safari.
Opening Hours: From 6 am to 6:30 pm
Mirissa is considered to be the best place for Christmas in Sri Lanka due to its diverse aquatic life. The place attracts tourists for both holidays as well as for ecological research purposes. It is best to visit Mirisaa beach in the month of December to spot dolphins and whales. The beach is also famous for ayurvedic massage centers.
Famous For: Surfing and Fishing
5. KK Beach (Kahanda Kanda Beach)
The KK Beach is probably the best beach to spend Christmas in Sri Lanka. This beach opens sometime in mid-December so it’s all yours to relax and unwind amidst the ocean waves and swaying palm trees. Dip your toes in the white sand, get working on that perfect tan and enjoy a lavish Christmas in Sri Lanka on this beach.
6. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
Rest your eyes on elephants having fun in the water and enjoying a river soak in this beautiful place in Sri Lanka. The sight of elephants enjoying a bath and baby elephants doing mischievous things are signs of enjoying the simple pleasures of life. You will definitely fall in love this place if you’re an animal lover and the wildlife intrigues you.
Timings: 9 am – 5 pm
7. Dondra Lighthouse
Located in the southernmost point in Sri Lanka, Dondra Lighthouse is Sri Lanka’s tallest lighthouse and it offers amazing panoramic views from the top. You can come with your family and spend your Christmas day enjoying the breathtaking views of the stunning landscape of Sri Lanka.
Location: Port Access Road, Dondra, Sri Lanka
How to Reach Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka has three international airports which are Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo, Ratmalana Airport in Colombo, and Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport in Hambantota. All these airports are very well connected to major cities in the world. There are about 13 domestic airports in Sri Lanka which are connected to all the major cities in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is easily accessible by rest of the world by air.
Christmas in Sri Lanka has become a lavish and extravagant affair. The entire country celebrates it with high spirits and enthusiasm, people gather to enjoy the grand feasts and splendid wines. Get ready to witness the charm and magic of Christmas by planning a getaway to Sri Lanka with TravelTraingle.
Frequently Asked Questions About Christmas In Sri Lanka
A. One of the best things to do in on Christmas in Sri Lanka is indulging in the feast and enjoy live music & dance performances. You can head to Fat Panda, The Lagoon, and Shang Palace for a memorable night.
A. The weather in Sri Lanka stays pleasant in the month of December as the temperature ranges from 23 degrees Celsius and 30 degrees Celsius.
A. Yes, Sri Lankans also celebrate Christmas despite less Christian population in the country. The streets are decked with lights and are teeming with people in new dresses.
A. Some of the major festivals that are celebrated in Sri Lanka are Vel Festival, Thai Pongal, Poson Festival, Sinhala & Tamil New Year, and Nallur Festival.
A. Yes, Sri Lanka is absolutely safe to explore. Though, one must stay alert in a new country and avoid exploring shady neighborhoods, especially late at night.
A. No, Sri Lanka is an independent island nation located in the Indian Ocean just at the tip of the Indian subcontinent.
A. English is widely spoken in Sri Lanka and you will find many people speaking in English, apart from Portuguese and native languages.
A. Some of the places do not serve alcohol in the day time, that is, from 2 to 5 in the evening. But you will find some places in Sri Lanka where you can head for a drink or two.
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