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Mask Making and Battles & Bastions

Two distinct experiences — one immersive, the other informative — of the way of life in the...

Galle, Southern Province

Two distinct experiences — one immersive, the other informative — of the way of life in the coastal South.

 

Mask Making – If the wearing and making of mask tickles your fancy, then this one’s for you. Nestled within the Galle Fort is the host’s workshop. He says traditional masks are mostly used for dance performances and storytelling, now. But can you believe their origin lies in ancient local beliefs surrounding their healing and protective qualities? You can closely observe the delicate technique used by the host in carving masks from the ‘Kolam’ tradition of Southern Sri Lanka. The wood used, ‘Kaduru’, is light and ideally suited to make them. Watch his precise technique and follow him carefully to mould an original piece of your own! What’s more, you get to use a list of traditional and sustainable materials to make yours, including recycled paper, kithul (treacle), kurundu (cinnamon), clay, broken tiles, beeswax, and even cow dung.

 

We’ll leave you to yourself for a few hours, thereafter. Perhaps you’ll chose to have lunch at one of the trendier spots within the Fort, or head back to your hotel for a bout of relaxation before your next Southern experience.

 

The drop in temperature in the evening is perfect for this experience: a leisurely guided walk, through the criss-cross patterned streets within the Galle Fort, rich in colourful bits of information about the Fort’s history.

 

Battles & Bastions – Best to meet your host in the evening for this experience, to escape the searing daytime heat! From how the city of Galle was named, to its colonial legacy involving, firstly, the Portuguese, then the Dutch, and the English finally, the Battles & Bastions experience is chock-full of pieces of invaluable information. Gently walk through streets and roads bearing interesting names inspired by specific events and people. Stop for awhile and stand in awe before historic buildings that have stood the test of time. The host offers a lot of insight into the evolution of the Fort from times of battle past, and its place as an important stop for Eastern traders, to what it is now. You’ll get to climb the bastion overlooking the famed international cricket ground in Galle, which offers a panoramic view of this bustling Southern city in every direction. The experience involves stories galore: some real, some mythical,but they’re all captivating. The host will, also, narrate personal accounts of the destruction left in the wake of the 2004 Tsunami. The evening is brought to an appropriate end beside the postcard perfect Lighthouse in Galle.

 

The day is done but the experience will linger.

 

Includes : Materials, tools, refreshments, mask & your host.
Children : Older kids will find interesting.
Times : Starts at 0900 hours & ends at 1700 hours.
To wear/bring : Light, cool clothing, sunscreen & water.

Other Single Day Experiences

Even the name sounds exotic, foreign, mysterious. Does it seem like this little island nation

What to Know Before you trvel

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Knowledge and expertise can make your holiday more canker free and fun filled.

Sri Lanka is a tropical island. Therefore, breathable cotton clothing would be ideal. White is considered a clean, pure colour especially when visiting religious sites. Ideally a pair of sturdy sneakers for treks would do whilst a pair of comfy flip flops would do for excursions and sandals would be perfect for the beach or for a casual walk.
Get permission from the proper people before visiting a sacred place. This might be a caretaker, holy person, elder, or the governing agency affiliated with the site. Be aware that even after attaining permission from a governing agency you may be offending indigenous people who may not have jurisdiction over their own sacred sites.
Exchange rates fluctuate constantly throughout the week as currencies are actively traded. This pushes the price up and down, similar to other assets such as gold or stocks. The market price of a currency – how many U.S. dollars it takes to buy a Canadian dollar for example – is different than the rate you will receive from your bank when you exchange currency. Here's how exchange rates work, and how to figure out if you are getting a good deal. For the more advanced investor, you might want to check out
01.A person may bring any sum of money in foreign currencies into Sri Lanka. This sum could be in TCs, Bank drafts or currency notes. However, if the total of such sum exceeds US$ 15,000, such sum should be declared to the Sri Lanka Customs.

02. If a person wishes to take out from Sri Lanka any sum in exceeds of US$ 5000 in currency notes out of the sum brought in as per (1) above, such person should declare the entirety of the sum brought in, even if it is less than US$ 15,000.
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