Sri Lankas Highlights

Close to the southern peak of India lays the island Sri Lanka. Once known as Ceylon you can find the globally known tea plantations, stunning landscapes and a wide range of ethnical influenced cultures and religions.

In the following article you find a summary of my personal highlights on a trip along the south-western part of the island.


#1  Sri Pada

Internationally known as Adam’s Peak you can find Sri Pada at a height of about 2350 metres. This earthgap has a special meaning for the uncountable pilgrims coming here every year. Translated from the ancient Indian language Sanskrit Sri Pada means footprint and has its own myth in each religion. While Buddhists would walk the 5000 stairs up to the peak in order to see Buddhas footprint, Hindus would do the same for the god Shiva. Muslims however are believing that Adam left his mark here.

The pilgrim season starts with the first fullmoon in December of every year and ends with the last fullmond in May. During High Season one has to reckon with an inrush of pilgrims and tourists. To avoid climbing up during the heat of the day and in order to reach the peak for sunrise you should start the trek at night time. Depending on the pace the 5000 stairs can be mastered in between three to six hours.

On the way up there are some shops in which you can take a break while having tea and snacks. During High Season the trek will be electrically illuminated. During Off-Season you should bring a flashlight.

TIPP! Take some warm clothes with you so you can really enjoy the view once you got to the top. At a height of more than 2000 metres it can get pretty cold – especially after sweating while hiking upwards.

How to get there: The hike up to Adams Peak starts in the small mountain village Nallathanniya which hasn’t a lot to offer besides a few accomodations for the people coming there for the trekking. The next biggest city is Nurwara Eliya which is round about 3,5 hours away. During High Season it’s also possible to catch a bus from Kandy. Another popular starting point is the small town Hatton which is connected to the railway.


#2  Train Ride

Who really wants to catch sight of Sri Lankas true beauty must not miss a train ride through the Islands stunning nature. The most popular route goes along between Kandy and Ella which takes about six hours and will be rewarded with a breathtaking view while passing tea plantations and unforgettable landscapes.

TIPP! While you’re at it you should plan a two to three night stay in the mountain village Ella. Here you can for instance climb up the small brother of Adams Peak.

More information about prices & time schedules you can find in this blog article.


#3  Galle

Not far from the International Airport in Negombo the colonial city Galle is a charming spot from which you could start your journey. The coastal town was once occupied by the Dutch and attracts with its small alleys, craft stores and cafés. You can have a nice walk on the top of the old city wall. One to two nights in this manageable location is sufficient tho.

TIPP: Don’t miss the sunset! The best way watching it is having a picknick while sitting on the city wall and enjoy the stunning view.


#4  International Buddhist Museum

My personal highlight on the trip to the centrally located city Kandy definetely was the International Buddhist Museum. Paying a ridicolous entrance fee of 2,50€ you can learn almost anything about the cultural and historical background of buddhism. The museums consists of several rooms of which each represents another country and its Buddhistic background. From Nepal to Tibet to China, Thailand, Myanmar or Pakistan you can follow the whole route on which Buddhism has once been spread. This is the first international buddhist museum worldwide and is located directly next to Kandy’s National Museum.


#5  Beaches

Besides its tea plantations the tropical island Sri Lanka is known for the scenic beaches. Depending on the season you can find a wide range of surfing and snorkling spots.

On my route in the northern part of the island I especially enjoyed the white sandy beach Mirissa. I feel like you could save the money and skip the whale watching trip. Rather go for a nice BBQ on the beach and have a super delicious dinner with fish and seafood while feeling the soft sand below the soles of your feet.


TIPP! Sri Lanka has the right beach for each purpose. To find the right spot for surfing, swimming or snorkling you should do some research depending on the season you are planning your trip. An overview for the most beautiful beaches you can find in this blog article.