Those travelers who want to get away from the beach and the cities and see the true unspoiled nature of this exotic island, put on your best shoes and prepare for some amazing hiking adventures in the highlands of Sri Lanka. Make sure you are all set and rested before going on these journeys. Hiking takes effort but it sure is rewarding! So, spend a few days relaxing in your private villa, swim, sleep, try out the local food and make sure your body is up for the track. It will be unforgettable experiences and the views along the way will blow your mind and cause your jaw to drop. Here are the 5 great hiking trails in Sri Lanka:
1. Adams Peak
Climbing Adam’s Peak, the 4th highest mountain in Sri Lanka, is a popular island activity among locals and tourists. Adam’s Peak, also known as Sri Pada, is a very important pilgrimage site because of a footprint mark on top of the summit. Buddhists claim it to be of Lord Buddha himself, Hindus say it’s the footprint of Lord Shiva and Christians and Muslims believe it is the footprint of Adam’s first step after being exiled from the Garden of Eden. You will start ascending this infamous mountain in the night to reach the summit by dawn where you will need to brace yourselves for the magnificent sunrise to come. This hiking trail takes around 5 to 7 hours and the difficulty is moderate.
2. Ella Rock
Located up in the beautiful Hill Country, where the air is fresh and cool, Ella has got some great hiking tracks. Ella’s Rock is a 10-kilometer trail, taking 3 to 4 hours and you can do the hike by yourself, without a guide. You will start at the Ella Railway station and it’s best to start early like 9 am to avoid the heat of the day or the afternoon rainfall. The track leads you past tea plantations, railway lines and alpine forests. The view at the top of Ella Rock is deeply rewarding. Ella Rock is a great hiking trail for everyone, not too difficult at all.
3. Trekking to World’s End in Horton Plains
There are also some great hiking tracks in the Horton Plains National Park taking you through beautiful forest patches and grasslands. The track leads you up to World’s End, a sudden 880 metre drop 4 km from the starting point. From this dramatic sight, the trek loops back to the cascading Baker’s Falls and back to the entrance gate! The total hike is 9.5 kilometers, taking approximately 3 hours. Be sure to head out early for the best views at World’s End as it often gets misty later on in the day.
The Riverston hiking trail leads through the Knuckles Mountains. A stunning untouched landscape ruled by greenery, mist and fresh air. The Riverstone hiking trail is a 2.5-kilometer uphill track but the paths are well maintained and the surroundings are enchanting. On the way up, you get to see two graceful waterfalls Sera Ella and Bambarakiri Ella as well as the magnificent views at Mini World’s end, featuring a 300-meter drop, overlooking the Knuckles Mountain Range and the Thelgamu river valley.
This challenging track of 7 kilometers, leads you through the Horton Plains National Park to the summit of Kirigalpotta at 2,395 above sea level. Kirigalpotta is Sri Lanka’s second tallest mountain and the highest accessible mountain peak for fit hikers (you need a special permit to climb the highest peak of Sri Lanka, Piduruthalagala). It is a difficult track and therefore not popular, making it all the more attractive to experienced hikers.
The article is written by Stephanie from Villa-Finder.com.