Adam’s Peak . Sri Lanka. Photos, description coordinates

Adam’s Peak – the highest point of Sri Lanka

View from the top - Adam's Peak

“Anyone who has never climbed Adam’s Peak is a fool. And he who has climbed a second time is doubly a fool” – the folk wisdom of the Lankans.

Distance from the airport:

Tourist season:

Best times to visit:

January to April, December

January, February, March

Free, donation welcomed

Adam's Peak

Adama Peak, Sri Lanka

One of the highest points on the island of Ceylon (the second highest) and one of the most popular attractions in Sri Lanka is Mount Adam’s Peak. It is also known as the Mountain of Butterflies (Samanalakanda), also called Sri Pada (“sacred trail”), and has names such as Ratnagiri (“mountain of gems” in Sanskrit) or Swargarohanam (“ascent to heaven” in Tamil). The most familiar name to islanders is Siripada or Sripada.

Adam’s Peak on the map

Adams Peak is located in central Sri Lanka, 80 km from Nuwara Eliya and 32 km from the town of Hatton. How to get to the mountain – read the detailed instructions below.

Adama Peak on the map:


Map of Sri Lanka

Adam’s Peak – the foot of Buddha and pilgrimage site


Buddhists near the temple

Poetic names were given to the famous mountain for a reason – Adam’s Peak delights with the incredible beauty of mountain nature, impresses with its scale and amazing centuries-old history.

Buddha's footprint on the mountain

Sacred trail of Buddha

The reason for such popularity among followers of absolutely different religions is the “sacred footprint”, a footprint of Gautam Buddha, who according to legend walked on top of the mountain.

And while Buddhists traverse the difficult path to the top in order to worship the imprint of the sage Gautama, Hindus see in Buddha and his footprints the reincarnation of man into a deity, Vishnu. Muslims, on the other hand, claim that the sacred imprint belongs to Adam himself, the first man created by God.


Cafe at the foot of the mountain

It is worth noting that it is not necessary to adhere to any religion to climb to the top of the mountain. Thousands of tourists and locals go to the mountain every month to enjoy the stunning scenery of Sripada Peak, to enjoy the long and sometimes difficult trek up the mountain trails and staircase of many steps, to share the experience with other travelers. And, of course, capture the sunrise, which is the end point of this journey.

The height of the mountain and how much to climb

How far up?

The ascent takes about 2.5 hours

Mount Adam’s Peak is 2243 meters high and is the second highest point of the island of Sri Lanka, surpassed by Mount Piduruthalagala (second name Pedro), which rises at 2524 meters above sea level! Piduratalagala is located near Nuwara Eliya and is also a place of pilgrimage and tourism, but is less popular with visitors to the island than the well-known Adam’s Peak.

The climb to the summit is considered difficult and tiring, but only for those travelers who do not travel much on foot and have never been hiking. In fact, thousands of hikers, many of them elderly and children, climb Sripada every day.

How long does the climb last


How long does the climb last

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The ascent lasts about 2.5 hours, taking into account stops and rests. The descent is 1-1.5 hours. The ascent should start at 3 a.m. in order to be up in time for the start of dawn.

During holidays and weekends, there are many more people, and there can be “traffic jams” on the way, which naturally increases the time of the route.

Number of steps

Climbing the Mountain

Climbing the mountain.

The road to the top of Sripada is 5,000 steps and about 8 km.

To make the walk as comfortable as possible, you should be sure to bring:

  • Drinking water or tea in a thermos.
  • Fruit or other food for a snack.
  • A thin long sleeve sweatshirt or T-shirt, sweater, sweatshirt or jacket, windbreaker, headgear for the return trip in the sun. Layering your clothes will help you calculate any weather and walk in comfort to the fullest.
  • Warm socks – at the top, at the temple, you should take off your shoes, but the rock cools down overnight, and standing in the cold is a serious challenge for many.
  • Waterproof sneakers or other comfortable shoes that repel water. High humidity, and consequently wet feet cause some discomfort during the long drive. Moreover, after heavy rains you can bother with leeches, which is a considerable amount in wet vegetation and decaying leaves.

It should be noted that the road leading to the final point of Sripada is not a wilderness.

Cafe at the foot of the mountain

There will be hundreds more people climbing with you. And along the road, in season, you will find mini stores selling water and local food. As well as medical aid stations.

Adam’s Peak – Dawn above the clouds and why climb Sripada?

View from the mountain


Adama Peak is a unique place!

  • It is the centuries-old history of the island of Sri Lanka.
  • It is a place of pilgrimage for believers of different religious faiths from different parts of the world.
  • It is a stunning blend of mountain scenery and tropical landscapes.
  • It is a place of strength, where you can recharge with other tourists the amazing energy of nature and the shared expectation of a daily miracle – the dawn that lights up the hilltops, overgrown with green forests for hundreds of kilometers ahead.
  • This is an unconventional vacation, an experience and emotion that will stay with you forever.

The long climb is worth it to meet the sunrise above the clouds to capture one of the most beautiful views of our planet with other wayfarers.

Photo – what you can see along the way:

The road in the mountains isn’t just steps and trails surrounded by forests and tea plantations. It is also beautiful views and sights that make the ascent interesting, and during rest stops you don’t get bored.

Getting to know Adam’s Peak


Dalhousie Village

Getting to know Mount Sripada and beginning the journey begins with arriving at the nearest town or village. After arriving from the airport or a city in Sri Lanka, all travelers stay in the village of Dalhousie or Nallathanniya, which is closest to the mountain.

In addition to resting and sleeping in a hotel room before climbing, you can stroll through the town and enjoy the pleasant views of the little village. The fruit markets, local food cafes, Buddhist temples, and charming friendliness of the island’s natives are sure to please all travelers. The village of Delhousie (Nallathanniya) is a pleasant start to explore Adam’s Peak, as the two “sites” have long been inseparable from each other.

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The Stone Gate at the Entrance


The Stone Gate

The Stone Gate is the first thing you see when you enter the mountain. The massive gate, made of rough stone, has been welcoming travelers for centuries. If you start climbing at night or early in the morning, the gate is poorly lit, but on your return to the foot it is worth paying attention to this stone giant.

Sama Chatiya Stupa

Buddhist Stupa

The Sama Chatiya Stupa is a Buddhist temple that was built about 40 years ago by a monk from Japan. The Peace Pagoda is located on the plumbline of the mountain. This snow-white dome is sure to catch your eye if you climb during daylight hours. Unfortunately, the stupa is not illuminated at night, so you won’t be able to enjoy the beautiful view or take a good photo.

Bhagawa Cave

Bhagawa Cave

Bhagawa Cave

Hundreds of years ago, pilgrims and hermit monks, while climbing Adam’s Peak, had the only opportunity to hide from the wind and rain in the grotto of Bhagawa Cave. This place sheltered not only travelers from the weather: there is a theory that Gautama Buddha, along with his retinue, made a rest stop inside the cave. However, renowned archaeologist Senerat Dissanayake argues that there is currently no conclusive evidence to prove that the Buddha visited the cave. The ascent of the Buddha to Adam’s Peak, on the other hand, is not in doubt.

Ancient writings

Ancient writings

Rock Art

In addition, the walls of Bhagawa Cave have three inscriptions, two of which were composed by the Polonnaruwa King Nissankamalla (1187-1196) back in the 12th century and the author of the third is Ibn Battuta (1304 – 1377), an Arab merchant who traveled the world and toured all Islamic countries, and with them, Sri Lanka.

King Nissankamallah’s Cave

King Nissankamalla’s Cave. Another attraction that is located on Adam’s Peak is Nissankamalla Cave. King Nissanka Malla and his army have climbed to the top of Sripad more than once. The pilgrim ruler often stayed overnight not only in the Bhagava Cave, but also in a second, larger shelter, which was later named after the king.

Buddha’s Footprint on Adam’s Peak


Buddha’s footprint

Buddha’s footprint. Having conquered Adam’s Peak, at the very top of the plateau, there is an imprint of the Buddha’s footprint. Among the Buddhist temples and the panoramic platform is the “sacred footprint”, which you can not only get up close and examine in detail, but also touch it with your hands, asking for a blessing. And if for the non-religious tourists the final point of the ascent is the meeting of the dawn in the mountains, for the pilgrims the crowning of the ascent is precisely the cast of the Buddha’s foot.


Mist over a tea plantation

Mist over the clouds.

The meeting of the dawn. The end of the climb – the observation deck, which offers stunning views of the hills and valleys that are warmed by the waking sun at the dawn of a new day.

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A small challenge – overcoming yourself, where in the end the effort is rewarded with a storm of emotions and experiences. Being on the island of Sri Lanka it is worth allocating time to visit Adam’s Peak, see the trail left by Buddha, get acquainted with the nature of the island, learn more about the history of Ceylon.

The attraction will seem especially valuable to those who like active recreation and new experiences. After all, the island of Sri Lanka – is not only the tropics, beaches and coke palms, and historical monuments of cultural heritage, as well as a rich history.

When not to climb Adam’s Peak?

May, June, July, August, September, October, and November are considered months not suitable for climbing Adam’s Peak. At this time in the central part of Sri Lanka, frequent rainfall, squally winds, and low temperatures. In addition to the fact that the ascent in rain or fog can be dangerous (road without lighting, slippery rocks, closed emergency rooms, etc.), and the dense fog prevents you from enjoying the mountain views and see the sunrise in its full beauty.

Tourist Reviews

Useful review from the comments of Eugene:

A little tip – at the entrance to the mountain, monks or others stand and take a donation to enter the mountain, but the payment is not required. If you’re brave enough and brazen enough, you can just walk through in the cold. If you decide to donate money, you can give a minimum amount, for example 200 rupees for two. The thing is that the monk will have a notebook in his hands, where he will show the names of tourists and the amount of their donations, and there will definitely be high figures, such as 1000 rupees per person. But it’s not always true, or maybe the small donations they don’t put in the table. Thus there is a psychological pressure, allegedly you poor poor give a little, but other tourists that’s how donate.

Such a scheme will meet more than once on the island. Sometimes people with disabilities collect money, sometimes also at the entrance to attractions. And always here is this notebook, where you enter the name and amount.

Read more reviews in the comments. Also don’t forget to share your experiences.

Little Adam’s Peak

Little Peak

Little Adam’s Peak

Two kilometers from the town of Ella is the little brother of Adam’s Peak, which is also called Little Adam’s Peak. The ascent to the top of the mountain is not as tiring, and does not take too much time – 15, – 2 hours. Since the height of the small peak is half as high as 1,141 meters above sea level.

Incredible beauty and brightness of mountain landscapes, a wonderful panoramic view from the highest point of the mountain. And the way to the top passes through the rice fields (at the foot of the mountain), then through a section of jungle, slopes with tea bushes. And if it has recently rained, you can capture the beauty of the mountain waterfall!

Little Adam’s Peak is sparsely populated, though it deserves as much attention as its older cousin.

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Adam’s Peak – the sacred mountain of Sri Lanka

Adam's Peak. Sri Lanka

Adam’s Peak is not the highest peak on the island of Sri Lanka, but it is one of the most famous. Its height is 2243 meters above sea level. It is very well visible from many kilometers away.

Adam’s Peak is located almost in the southwesternmost part of the Central Province of Sri Lanka, a few hundred meters from the border with the province of Sabaragamuwa. Relative to the whole of Sri Lanka Adam’s Peak is located in its southwestern part.

Adam's Peak. Sri Lanka

Adam’s Peak on the map

  • Geographical coordinates 6.809557, 80.499317
  • The distance from Sri Lanka’s largest city Colombo is about 75 km as a straight line.
  • The nearest airport is Ratmalana about 70 km
  • Bandaranaike International Airport 80 km
  • Both airports are near Colombo. Ratmalana to the south and Bandaranaike to the north of the city

Adam’s Peak in Religion

For centuries this mountain has been a source of anxiety for people. That’s because the footprints of Gautama Buddha himself were found on its very summit. At least, so believe the Buddhists.

Indeed, at the very top was found hollow, more than a meter and a half long and 76 cm wide. It is shaped very much like an impressive footprint left by a huge foot.

In general, religious representatives of different denominations slightly contradict each other. For example, Hindus believe that God Shiva passed through here. Christians and Muslims believe that the footprint was left by Adam himself, the progenitor of all mankind.

Don’t be surprised, both Islam and Christianity consider Adam to be the first man and the first prophet on earth. Usually the characters of the Qur’an Adam and Hawba are identified with the biblical Adam and Eve. In the beginning the religions were closely intertwined, then their currents diverged slightly.

In any case, whoever left the mark, the site has been sacred to pilgrims of several world religions for more than a thousand years.

Adam's Peak. Sri Lanka

Temple at Adam’s Peak

Because the world’s leading religions “claim” this trace, the mountain’s names are quite varied. To Europeans it is known as Adam’s Peak or simply Adam’s Peak. According to legend, this is the place where Adam first touched the earth when he was expelled from paradise. Buddhists call this place Sri Pada (meaning “Sacred Trail”) and believe that the trail was left by Buddha on his way to heaven. Sometimes the summit is called Samanalakande, which means butterfly mountain.

Temple on the summit

At the very top of Adam’s Peak is an open temple, with an area of just over 200 m 2 . Thousands of tourists and pilgrims climb here every year, overcoming not the easiest way.

Climbing begins in December during the full moon “Unduvap Poya” and continues until the festival “Vesak” in May (incidentally, also a festival of the full moon). January and February are the most crowded. But from May to October the temple is not used and most of the time the mountain is obscured by clouds.

Adam's Peak in the Clouds

There are about 5,200 steps leading up to the temple on Adam’s Peak. It takes 2.5 hours or half a day to get there – it all depends on where you start the climb. The local pilgrims consider the longest route starting from Ratnapura, 17 kms from Adam Peak to be the right one.

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It is said that a person who has taken this route deserves more respect. But this is mostly for religious pilgrims. Tourists can take a shorter and quicker route. First come to the town of Hatton, then take a bus to the station Delhause and then walk about 5 kilometers.

It is worth paying attention to another attraction in Sri Lanka – the Cave Temple of Dambulla, which is located 120 kilometers to the north.

On mass climbing days you can see a lot of people, even families with small children. The locals (Lankans) have a saying, a free translation of which sounds like “Who never in his life has not been on Adam’s Peak – he’s a fool. Interestingly, the end of this saying “and whoever climbs for the second time is also a fool.

Having been to these places and not climbing Adam’s Peak is an unforgivable omission. The views that open from the top are simply stunning. Often many (mostly tourists) climb here just to see how the day is born. With the first moments of dawn the world around begins to play with unreal colors, generating the same unreal views. The thought “breathtaking” will definitely be the first thing that comes to your mind. It is a worthy reward for the hard way. So don’t be what the first part of the proverb says, and bravely conquer Adam’s Peak.

It is worth remembering that the way to the summit is still difficult. You need to have good shoes and warm clothes. Yes, yes, don’t laugh, warm clothing is just what you need at the top. The temperature at Adam’s Peak can be quite low for these latitudes (about 10 degrees), and the winds often make their negative adjustments. It may also rain. Thermos with hot tea or coffee won’t be superfluous either.

Usually the rise begins early in the morning, or rather almost at night, in an hour or two after midnight is already time to go, so as not to oversleep one of the most glamorous sunrises on the planet. Many people do so, and almost immediately after sunrise rush down. By the way the way down is not much easier. Do you remember how many steps you have to overcome? This is the gate begins and ends with the most difficult part of the journey.

Gate to Adam's Peak

The gate behind which the ascent begins

Interesting facts about Adam’s Peak

A monk at the sacred trail of Adama Peak

  • it is believed that the water that accumulates in the “trail” has miraculous and healing properties
  • The “trail” itself is under a special cover, and photography and videotaping inside the temple is prohibited. This is probably why we could not find any pictures of it. Only this lonely monk praying near the trail
  • It is necessary to take off your shoes when entering the temple. Therefore, warm socks and shoe covers that you brought with you will be very useful for you and your health.
  • Along the trail leading to the summit there are a lot of white strings and colored flags that are part of the local culture.
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