In the central heartlands of Sri Lanka, the mountain called Adam’s Peak towers over the landscape. At its peak is the sacred rock formation that’s referred to as the Sri Pada – one of the most revered and sacred locations found on the entire island. A climb up to the peak is long and arduous but immensely rewarding as well. In fact, it is one of the most popular things to do while you’re here in Nuwara Eliya.
Adam’s Peak has a long and storied history associated with it, one which stretches back all the way to the 4th century. The ancient text Deepawamsa and Mahawamsa – which detail ancient Sri Lankan history – mention the Sri Pada as one of the locations the Buddha visited when he arrived in Sri Lanka. Buddhists believe that the sacred footprint found near the summit of the mountain was left by the Buddha on behalf of the God Saman – the guardian of the Sri Pada Mountain. Other cultures have their own tales to explain the sacred footprint. The island’s Hindu population believe it to be Lord Shiva’s while some Muslims and Christians say it belongs to the biblical Adam. With so much religious and cultural significance being ascribed to Sri Pada, it is unsurprising that thousands of pilgrims make the climb up to the peak every year.
Now, when you’re making the climb yourself, you’ll need to choose which trail you want to use. There are 6 trails in total and each has its own merits. Each trail is linked to a major city via a bus route, so you can make a choice based on what’s closest to you. The way up is long and might even take you most of the day, however, the majestic scenery you’ll be treated to more than makes up for this. Once you’re finally up at the peak, you’ll be able to enjoy a 360-degree view of the surrounding landscape that’s sure to leave you breathless.