Lanu Onchillawa, Raban Gahilla and Kottapora Gaseema are games that roll around generally once a year and that is during the Sinhala and Tamil New Year; a period that stimulates the nation and fosters a feeling of community in Sri Lanka.
The mating call of the koha bird signifies the dawn of a new era and the passing away of the old one. It also marks the end of an abundant harvest year. The month of April is dedicated to this national festival which is an occasion that transcends race and religion and is a celebration of all that is multi-cultural in the nation.
This is why Jetwing Hotels promises to provide an unforgettable New Year experience for the whole family. For along with the traditional rituals and customs there will be an exciting Avurudu games and sumptuous culinary delights that really tease out the multi-cultural flavour that is Sri Lanka.
Guests staying at Jetwing hotels will be active participants in the performance and observance of this novel event when he or she chooses to celebrate Avurudu with Jetwing the unique way. For as the Jetwing Hotels General Manager pointed out “all of this gaiety will be in line with the true spirit of the Sinhala and Tamil New Year which is a celebration of celebrations.”
In the peaceful and elegant retreat that is Jetwing Sea in Negombo the Sinhala and Tamil New Year will come alive with the symbolic boiling of milk in a new pot – which represents prosperity – and the drum beat of the rabban players. This will take place on 16 April when the Avurudu celebrations kick off at Jetwing Sea with an exciting Avurudu Bazaar.
The Central Hill capital of Kandy has long been the favourite place for Avurudu celebrations due to the patronage that the festivities received from the Nayakkar Kings in by-gone eras. Here Jetwing Hunas Falls, set among spectacular waterfalls, will commence New Year celebrations with the hoisting of the national flag and the national anthem.
After the traditional oil lamp is lit there will be traditional games such as eating the bun and the bursting of balloons for children followed by games for adults such as passing of the egg and breaking the treasure pot with your eyes blindfolded.
An uproarious tug-of-war will finish the games and tantalizing sweet meats and king coconut will be offered to revive tired spirits. At discounted rates exciting excursion trails are on offer as well as an early evening talk on the birds of Sri Lanka by Jetwing Hunas Falls Resident naturalist.
At the hotel on the hillock, also known as Jetwing Lighthouse, which is situated in the southern coastal town of Galle, the festive season, is greeted with outstretched hands. This means that the Avurudu festivities will kick off well below the due date in order to get all guests and visitors into the mood of the moment.
Seismic drum beats of the rabana will resonate throughout the week along with traditional Avurudu games by the pool and on the spa lawn. All of this will be accompanied by demonstrations of local sweetmeat preparations and food tasting which will offer guests a glimpse of the merriment to come. Then on 13 April there will be a typical Southern Celebration of the New Year that will signify the diversity with which each region of the country celebrates this particular event.
Guests will be welcomed with beetle leaves and a welcome speech by the General Manager. On the spa lawn there will be huts for milk rice and sweetmeat preparations, food counters, go-carting with king coconuts and young coconuts and games that will include both young and old a-like.
Along the sun-kissed beaches of the West Coast of the island Jetwing Beach has organised a week of celebrations from 11 to 17 April.
The menu is set to tempt even the most careful weight watcher into becoming a serial gormandizer. Delicious lunches such as chicken kathi kebabs with tomato raita and chicken shawarma followed by the Negombo muhudu maha wadiya or flambé steak dining at the Beach Tent. On 14 April there will be the choice of a traditional breakfast buffet (probably kiribath) as well as an international breakfast to mark the New Year.
Tangalle Bay Hotel has a unique offer where each person can stay at the hotel on full board basis for only Rs. 5,000 while children below the age of five can go free. It is certainly an experience that holidaymakers cannot afford to miss.