Are you a nature lover looking for an adventurous way to explore the beauty of Sri Lanka? If so, then hiking is the perfect activity for you. Sri Lanka has a wide range of trails suitable for both beginners and experienced hikers. In this article, we’ll explore the top one day hiking places in Sri Lanka, each with its unique features and stunning scenery.
Why should you search for one day hiking places in Sri Lanka?
One of the best things about hiking in Sri Lanka is the opportunity to experience the country’s natural beauty up close. From misty mountains to stunning waterfalls, there’s no shortage of breathtaking scenery to discover for you. Along the way, you’ll also have the chance to meet friendly locals and learn about Sri Lanka’s rich culture and history.
Remember that the duration and difficulty level of each hike may vary depending on various factors, such as,
- Weather conditions
- Your fitness levels
- The specific trail you take
You must remember these measures to hike one day in the following places in Sri Lanka.
- Research the trail you’re choosing beforehand (Some of the trails may require a guide or permit, and some of the trails may be closed during specific seasons of the year due to weather conditions or maintenance)
- Check with local authorities or experienced hikers
- Plan your hike accordingly
- Always carry sufficient water, snacks, and other necessary equipment for the hike.
With all that set in, let’s find out the best one day hiking places you can explore in Sri Lanka.
Adam’s Peak – Another pretty famous one day hiking places in Sri Lanka
You can find Adam’s Peak in the central highlands of Sri Lanka. This place is one of Sri Lanka’s most well-known and revered hikes, drawing thousands of tourists annually. All four of the major religions in Sri Lanka respect the Peak.: Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, and Christianity. As such, they are all motivated to ascend its 5,200 steps to a height.
Trail and hiking journey to Adam’s Peak
This 2,243-meter-high mountain is a popular hiking destination that takes around 4-5 hours to climb. At the top, a breathtaking sunrise view and the surrounding hills will be your reward.
Knuckles Mountain Range
The Knuckles Mountain Range is a must-visit destination for hikers in Sri Lanka. Between Kandy and Matale in the Central Highlands is where you may find the Knuckles Range. Because of how they appear from some vantage points, the mountains people call knuckles. There you can find designated and well-maintained hiking trails.
Trail and hiking journey to the Knuckles Mountain Range
The Knuckles Range offers hikers the opportunity to explore a variety of ecosystems, including abrupt variations in weather and temperature. The range offers many trails of varying difficulty levels that take you through lush green forests, crystal clear streams, and beautiful tea plantations.
Located in the town of Ella, this hiking trail is around 8 km and takes around 4-5 hours to complete. It is located at the height of 1,000 meters (3,280 feet). The trail takes you through tea plantations, dense forests, and stunning waterfalls before reaching the Peak; your reward will be an unforgettable panoramic view of the surrounding landscape.
Horton Plains National Park
Horton Plains National Park is a beautiful hiking destination in Sri Lanka, located in the central highlands. The park offers several hiking trails, including the popular World’s End trail, which offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. Are you looking for a little challenge? Then this moderately difficult hike, which lasts about 2-3 hours, is a great option for you.
Pidurangala Rock is near the famous Sigiriya Rock Fortress and offers a relatively easy hike that takes around 1-2 hours to complete. A panoramic view of the surroundings, including the Sigiriya Rock Fortress, awaits you at the summit.
In Matale, Sri Lanka’s Central Province, Riverston is another summit in the Knuckles mountain range. A well-known mountain for hiking, Riverston features a peak of 1,424 meters above sea level. There would be a 2-kilometer climb up to the summit.
Trail and hiking journey to Riverston
It takes 4-5 hours to finish the moderate to challenging hike. A little settlement serves as the trailhead for the ascent of Riverston, which then travels through a lush forest and rolling hills. Even those with little hiking expertise can easily follow the trail because it is signposted and well-maintained.
It frequently winds along the trail that leads to the summit. You don’t need hiking equipment or shoes for the ascent because it is a paved road. The surrounding hills and valleys are stunning from the summit of Riverston.
Sinharaja Forest Reserve
As one of Sri Lanka’s last remaining rainforests, UNESCO named Sinharaja Forest Reserve a World Heritage Site. The reserve offers several hiking trails, including the famous Kudawa Trail, which takes around 4-5 hours to complete and provides a chance to experience the rainforest’s rich biodiversity. You can find well-kept hiking trails that are excellent. Anyone may find a trail they enjoy because several options are available, ranging from brief strolls to strenuous hikes.
Little Adam’s Peak – One of the must-visit one day hiking places in Sri Lanka
Located in the town of Ella, this hiking trail is relatively easy and takes around 1-2 hours to complete. Hike to Little Adam’s Peak soars to a commanding 1141 meters above ground, allowing you to explore breathtaking landscapes made up of sheer drops and heavily forested rainforest. You should start their excursions from Ella town, where the mountain’s summit is just 3 kilometers away. Early morning or late evening would be the ideal times to explore Little Adam’s Peak.
Kirigalpoththa is the second-highest mountain in Sri Lanka and is a challenging hike that takes around 7-8 hours to complete. The trail takes you through lush forests, beautiful waterfalls, and breathtaking panoramas of the surroundings.
The highest point is 2,388 meters above sea level. The highest Peak that the general public may reach and the highest mountain in Horton Plains National Park is Kirigalpoththa. The challenging terrain and weather make the Kirigalpoththa Hiking something that only the most daring explorers should attempt.
The Bambarakanda Falls is Sri Lanka’s tallest waterfall. The hike to the falls takes around 1-2 hours to complete. When considering the hike the entire length of this hike is 1.6 km. The hike you take, which begins at the Bambarakanda Rest in Kalupahana and concludes at the top of the Bambarakanda Falls, is easy. April through September is the ideal time to hike to Bambarakanda Falls.
Pitawala Pathana is a beautiful plateau located in the Knuckles Mountain Range. This place offers stunning views of the surrounding hills. The hike to Pitawala Pathana takes around 2-3 hours to complete. The trail starts from the village of Meemure, located about 25 kilometers from Kandy.
Trail and hiking journey to Pitawala Pathana
The trail to Pitawala Pathana starts from the village and leads through beautiful forests and streams. As you climb higher, you’ll see stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. The grassland of Pitawala Pathana stretches out before you, offering a panoramic view of the surrounding landscape. It’s a perfect spot to relax and take in the stunning scenery.
Diyathalawa Mountain Range
Diyathalawa Mountain Range is a beautiful hiking destination in Sri Lanka that offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. The hike to the top takes around 4-5 hours to complete and takes you through lush forests, tea plantations, and stunning waterfalls.
Trail and hiking journey to Diyathalawa Mountain Range
The folks take a variety of routes. Since the pine forest almost completely covers this range, the trek is through pines. Between the Pines, there are small sections of forest and plants. Because of the pine trees’ leaves, specific routes are particularly slick. Passing through the Pines to reach the mountain’s neck is the fundamental step in any hike. You can then access the Peak of Diyathalawa. You may enjoy a beautiful view of the surroundings from Diyathalawa Mountain’s summit.
Lipton’s Seat is a stunning viewpoint located in the heart of Sri Lanka’s tea country, near the town of Haputale. The tea plantations around Lipton’s Seat are also their primary attraction. The area is known for its high-quality tea, and you may also go on a guided tour of a local tea factory to learn about the tea-making process and sample some of the delicious brews.
Trail and hiking journey to Lipton’s Seat
The hike to Lipton’s Seat takes around 2-3 hours to complete and offers stunning views of the surrounding hills and tea plantations. To reach Lipton’s Seat, you’ll need to embark on a scenic trek through lush tea plantations and rolling hills. The trail is well-marked and relatively easy, but climbing to the top can be steep in places.
Once you reach the summit, you’ll enjoy stunning views of the valleys and hills in the area. It is possible to see the coast on a clear day and even catch a glimpse of the distant Adam’s Peak.
Alagalla Mountain Range
The Alagalla Mountain Range, also known as the Potato Range, is one of the most popular hiking destinations in Sri Lanka. Located near the town of Kegalle, the range offers a variety of hiking trails, ranging from easy to challenging. The hike to the top takes around 3-4 hours to complete and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
Trail and hiking journey to Alagalla Mountain Range
The mountain range is home to two peaks, the 1,130-meter-high Alagalla Peak and the 1,155-meter-high Bathalegala Peak, both of which offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. When considering the trail to Alagalla Peak, it is one of the most popular hiking trails in the mountain range. The trail starts from the village of Ihala Kotte and winds its way through lush forests and tea plantations. Of course, the trail is relatively easy to navigate but can be steep and slippery in some areas. So, do not forget to wear appropriate footwear.
The final stretch of the trail to Alagalla Peak is challenging, with steep climbs and narrow paths. However, the stunning views from the summit are well worth your effort. From the top of Alagalla Peak, you can see the entire mountain range and the surrounding towns and villages.
Mahaweli River Trail
The Mahaweli River Trail is a scenic hiking trail that winds along the banks of the Mahaweli River, Sri Lanka’s longest river. The trail starts in the town of Kandy and follows the river for approximately 25 kilometers, passing through lush forests, tea plantations, and rural villages along the way.
Trail and hiking journey to Mahaweli River Trail
The Mahaweli River Trail is a relatively easy hike, suitable for hikers of all ages and experience levels. The trail is well-marked and easy to navigate, with plenty of opportunities to stop and take in the scenery. Along the way, you’ll see various wildlife, including monkeys, birds, and occasionally even elephants. The Mahaweli River Trail is also home to several waterfalls, including the stunning Ramboda Falls. The falls are a popular spot for picnics and swimming and offer a refreshing break from the heat of the trail.
Bambarakiri Ella is a beautiful waterfall in the town of Udawalawe and a popular hiking destination. With its crystal clear waters cascading down a rocky cliff face, Bambarakiri Ella is a sight to behold and a popular destination for hikers and nature lovers.
Trail and hiking journey to Bambarakiri Ella
The hike to the waterfall takes around 2-3 hours to complete and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. The trail to Bambarakiri Ella is relatively easy and winds through lush forests and scenic countryside. As you hike, you’ll hear the sound of rushing water in the distance, growing louder as you approach the falls.
When you finally reach Bambarakiri Ella, You’ll receive a priceless sight. The waterfall is over 50 meters high, and the water falls into a clear pool below. You can take a refreshing swim in the pool or sit back and enjoy the stunning scenery.
Diyaluma Falls is a beautiful waterfall located in the town of Koslanda and is a popular hiking destination. The falls are one of the most popular hiking destinations in Sri Lanka, and it’s easy to see why. One of the unique features of Diyaluma Falls is the natural swimming pool formed at the base of the falls. The water is crystal clear and refreshingly cool, making it the perfect spot to take a dip and cool off after the hike.
Trail and hiking journey to Diyaluma Falls
The hike to the waterfall takes around 2-3 hours to complete and offers stunning views of the surrounding hills and tea plantations. The trail to Diyaluma Falls is a bit more challenging than other hikes on this list, but the reward is well worth it. The trail takes you through lush forests, past rocky outcroppings, and along the cliff’s edge before reaching the falls.
When you finally arrive at Diyaluma Falls, you’ll be amazed by its sheer size and beauty. The falls are over 220 meters high, making them one of the tallest waterfalls in Sri Lanka. The water cascades down the rocky cliff face, forming a series of pools and rapids.
Ella Gap -One of the most popular one day hiking places in Sri Lanka
Ella Gap is a beautiful hiking destination located in the town of Ella. This natural wonder is a popular destination for hikers, nature lovers, and adventure seekers. The gap is between two mountain peaks, Kirigalpotta and Mini Adam’s Peak, and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
Trail and hiking journey to Ella Gap
The hike to the gap takes around 2-3 hours to complete and offers stunning views of the surrounding hills and tea plantations. The trail to Ella Gap is a moderate hike that takes you through lush forests, past tea plantations, and winding mountain paths. As you make your way up the trail, Awe-inspiring views of the surrounding hills and valleys will be your reward.
When you finally arrive at Ella Gap, you’ll be amazed by the stunning view of the valley below. The gap is over 1,000 feet deep and offers a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside. You are welcome to sit on the gap’s edge and take in the beauty of the landscape, feeling the cool breeze on your face.
Kalupahana is a beautiful hiking destination located in the central highlands of Sri Lanka. This small village is located in the Sabaragamuwa Province of Sri Lanka. Kalupahana is a remote village is situated in a valley surrounded by stunning mountains and forests.
Trail and hiking journey to Kalupahana
The hike to the top takes around 4-5 hours to complete and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. The trail to Kalupahana is a moderate hike that takes you through lush tea plantations and verdant forests, and along the way, you can Enjoy breathtaking views of the valleys and hills in the area as a reward. As you make your way up the trail, you’ll also have the opportunity to meet friendly locals and learn about their way of life.
Once you arrive in Kalupahana, the village’s peaceful atmosphere, and stunning natural beauty will welcome you. The village is located in a valley surrounded by mountains, and its home to several small streams and waterfalls. You can swim in the cold waters to relax or sit and admire the stunning scenery.
Namunukula is a stunning mountain range located in the Badulla District of Sri Lanka. This remote and scenic destination is a hiker’s paradise, offering panoramic views of the surrounding hills and valleys and a glimpse into the rural way of life.
Trail and hiking journey to Namunukula
The hike to the top takes around 5-6 hours to complete and offers stunning views of the surrounding hills and tea plantations. The trail to Namunukula starts in the village of Koslanda and takes you through picturesque tea plantations and lush forests. Once you reach the summit of Namunukula, awe-inspiring panoramas of the surrounding countryside will be your reward. The mountain range stands at an elevation of over 2,000 meters; on a clear day, you can see as far as the coast.
Sri Lanka offers a variety of beautiful one day hiking places. Each of them has its unique features and stunning scenery. Regardless of your hiking level, from novice to expert, a trail in Sri Lanka is perfect for you. One of the best things about hiking in Sri Lanka is the opportunity to experience the country’s natural beauty up close.
If you are looking for an adventure and a chance to explore the great outdoors, consider adding one day hiking places in Sri Lanka to your bucket list. You will have an unforgettable experience in Sri Lanka, with many stunning destinations.