Mask making has been an ancient art since days of yore in the coastal city of Ambalangoda, Sri Lanka. The wooden masks represent various deities and even demons. Used in many traditional dance rituals the masks are symbols of good luck and warding off the evil eye.
The Ambalangoda Mask Museum of Sri Lanka
Ambalangoda is well established as the mask making capital of the island. The mask museum well chronicles the journey this traditional art has taken over the years. Though over a 120 vintage masks are in possession of the museum authorities not all are on display due to a lack of space. However the lot on display are historical masterpieces elegantly carved to represent demons, deities and lesser mortals. On display are collections belonging to the Kolam Dance Rituals and Sanni Yakum Dance Rituals.
The Mask Library of Ambalangoda
This unique exhibit is the only one on the entire island. The place well chronicles the uses of each mask type with literature on the type of rituals performed and masks used for these. A recorded history of mask making on the island too is available here and makes for quite an interesting read when taking a break from water sports. The latter statement speaks to the throngs of sun loving tourists frequenting the south coast especially popular Bentota. Just a few minutes from sleepy Ambalangoda, Bentota water sports are well established for adrenaline pumping action making a day’s sojourn to the mask museum of Ambalangoda quite a relaxing treat.
Enjoy the Mask Workshop in Ambalangoda
Once you see the colourful and eloquently carved masks you most certainly will be intrigued by the manufacture process. Just half an hour from Shinagawa Beach the mask museum holds regular workshops as well as displays of ancient tools originally used to carve the masks. Learn the types of wood in use, the drying and smoking procedure and skills required to carve the elaborate expressions on each façade.
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Located in the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is a collection of history, architecture, beaches and island food. Beruwala is situated in the southwestern part of the Island and is a small, peaceful fishing town. With tropical waters and golden sandy beaches, this town has a lot of offer its visitors. Visitors searching for a Bentota Hotel would find the cosy delights of Shinagawa Beach an ideal spot for rest and relaxtion along the golden coast of this Island.
The Beruwala Lighthouse is one of the most revered monuments in this coastal village that has stood the test of time. The lighthouse is located on Barberyn Island, a beautiful island 10 minutes from the shores, is decorated with coconut trees, mango trees, cashew trees and many others. Standing at about 112 feet in height, this white conical granite tower is a popular tourist attraction is gently nestled amidst the swaying trees and chirping birds. Built by the British in 1928, fragments of the lighthouse still exist from their construction, such as the glass at the tower which is known to be the original glass from its installation. After climbing up 140 steps, visitors are treated to one of the most breath taking scenes of Sri Lanka, as the view offers a 360 degree view panoramic view. The light station stands next to the lighthouse holds two oval tanks used to harvest rain water, which is later purified and used as drinking water by its keepers.
Sri Lanka loves its old historic buildings and the Barberyn Island has quite a few of its own. The middle of the island eerily holds an abandoned gray building. A small house with clay roofs that were once used by the British as a bar or entertainment place, known as Stores is also located on the island. Stores serves as great vantage point to watch the waves of the Indian Ocean kissing the rocks along its border. A historic well, also built by the British is situated near the bay which used to provide drinking water.
Roland Lefevre is a travel writer who specializes in creating features on leisure as well as business travel destinations across the globe. Google+