A Sacred Mountain
An hour drive south of Hatton, you will find Adam’s Peak. Also known as Sri Pada, this is perhaps the most famed mountain in Sri Lanka and is a holy site for all religions in the country. The name Sri Pada translates to “sacred footprint” a reference to the impression found at the top of the mountain. Each religion has a different belief on who the footprint belongs to, Buddhists believe it is the Buddha’s; Hindus believe it is that of Hanuman or Shiva; while Christians; Muslims believe it is Adam’s footprint– regardless of the religion most Sri Lankans make the pilgrimage at least once in their life.
The 7,359 ft tall peak towers above the surrounding thick jungle, and since the Sri Pada is so large there are many trails to get to the top, but the most popular is the Hatton – Nallathani trail. The climb itself can be quite challenging, as it includes 5,000 – 6,000 worn down steps towards the top and there’s a steep incline, however, you do not need any gear so it’s not too bad.
The Season to Climb and Experience
The season to climb Adam’s Peak is from December – April, as that is when visibility is at its best. It would be an understatement to say the view from the top is breathtaking; over 1000 people make the pilgrimage during this period, and while you’re ascending people are singing and chatting, but when you get to the top, a calmness washes over you and suddenly everything is hushed. Usually, people begin the climb a little after midnight to make it for sunrise, and it is truly an indescribable feeling, watching the sunrise over Sri Lanka from such a holy site.