Located in a beautiful area of the southern Hill Country, this lofty peak has sparked the imagination for centuries and been a focus for pilgrimage for more than 1000 years.
It’s variously known as Adam’s Peak (the place where Adam first set foot on earth after being cast out of heaven), Sri Pada (Sacred Footprint, left by the Buddha as he headed towards paradise), or perhaps most poetically as Samanalakande (Butterfly Mountain; where butterflies go to die). Legends attribute the huge ‘footprint’ crowning the peak to St Thomas, the early apostle of India, or even Lord Shiva.
The pilgrimage season begins on poya day in December and runs until the Vesak festival in May. In season, pilgrims and tourists alike make the climb up the countless steps to the top. At other times, the summit’s temple can be unused, and is often obscured by clouds.