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Home > Discovery Top Attractions > Adam’s Peak And Peak Wilderness Sanctuary

Adam’s Peak And Peak Wilderness Sanctuary

Arugam BaySoaring above the surrounding hills in the southwest of the Central Highland is Adam’s Peak. Known also as Sri Pada- Sacred Footprint – due to the curious footprint-shaped indentation at its summit, the mountain is considered hallowed to adherents of all Sri Lanka’s main faiths – Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and Christians – and attracts pilgrims between December and May each year.

The ascent requires stamina rather than mountaineering skills and consists of some 5,200 steps to the summit. Make the ascent during the night, when the twinkling lights along the pathway appear to rise like a stairway to heaven. Tea stalls line the path and the distant tolling of the bell at the summit provides encouragement to weary climbers. Dawn at the summit is an intensely spiritual experience. Pilgrims whisper reverently to each other asthe sun rises and casts a perfect triangular shadow on the clouds below, one of the island’s more unusual natural phenomena

Peak Wilderness sanctuary, a tropical rain forest that spreads over a land of 224 square kilometers around the Sri Pada (Adam’s Peak) mountain, is one of three nature sites in the Central Highlands which was declared recently as a UNESCO World Heritage site

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The contours of Peak Wilderness vary from 1000 to 7360 feet above sea level. Therefore, it possesses unusual geographical formations compared to the other natural reserves of the island. Bena Samanala (6579 ft), Dotalugala, Detanagala, are some of the taller mountains in the Peak Wilderness. It is also the birthplace of Kelani, Kalu, Walave rivers and many tributaries of the river Mahaweli which make waterfalls such as Dotalu falls, Geradi falls, Galagama falls (655 ft), and Mapanana falls (330 ft) inside the sanctuary.

Out of the 3 access routes; Hatton route, Kuruwita route and Palabaddala route, which Buddhist devotees and other tourists use to reach the Adam's Peak, Kuruwita and Palabaddala routes go right across the Peak Wilderness sanctuary. This forest area is entirely under the control of Sri Lanka Wildlife Conservation Department. It does not maintain any lodge, bungalow or such type of facility for tourists inside Peak Wilderness sanctuary in order to safeguard the purity of this forest. Yet, there is no restriction for eco-tourists to enter the sanctuary after obtaining permission from Sri Lanka Wildlife Conservation Department. Entering the sanctuary during the rain season is at the tourist's own risk because of the unforeseen downpours and instant floods lead to life-risk situations.  

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