Skip to Content

8 Best Hiking Places in Sri Lanka

If you love exploring nature and a challenge, then getting out on the trails in Sri Lanka is an absolute must!

With beautiful landscapes, mountains to trek and exotic flora and fauna to enjoy, this South Asian country has something for everyone.

From beginner hikers to experienced adventurers, there are plenty of incredible hiking spots that offer some stunning views you won’t want to miss.

Get ready to explore the great outdoors ‘Srilankan style’ with my list of the top 10 best hiking places in Sri Lanka for travelers.

lion's rock sri lanka, girl walking on the edge

“Paulina on the Road” is supported by you, dear reader. As you buy through my links, I earn a small commission. As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Thank you for your support

Top hiking places in Sri Lanka

1. Adam’s Peak

best places for hiking in sri lanka, adam's peak

If you’re an adventure seeker, hiking up Adam’s Peak in Sri Lanka should definitely be on your bucket list.

Located in the central highlands, Adam’s Peak is a 2,243-meter-high mountain that offers breathtaking views from its summit.

The hike can be challenging, especially towards the top where the steps become steeper and uneven.

It usually takes around four to six hours to reach the top, but the picturesque landscape will make you forget your tired legs.

The best time to visit is from December to April, when the weather is dry and clear, giving you an uninterrupted view of the sunrise from the top of the mountain.

So pack your hiking boots, camera, and get ready to conquer one of the most scenic treks in Sri Lanka.

2. Ella Rock

best hiking spots in sri lanka, ella rock

If you’re looking for a picturesque hike in Sri Lanka, then Ella Rock should be at the top of your list!

Located just outside the charming town of Ella, the hike to the summit is both challenging and rewarding.

This six-kilometer trek takes approximately three hours to complete, and depending on your fitness level, can be moderately difficult.

The trail winds through lush forests, tea plantations, and rural villages, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes.

The best time to visit Ella Rock is during the dry season, between December and March, when the weather is more predictable and visibility is clearer.

Don’t forget to bring plenty of water, comfortable shoes, and your camera to capture the panoramic views from the top!

3. Knuckles Mountain Range

Knuckles Mountain Range

Have you heard of the Knuckles Mountain Range in Sri Lanka?

It’s an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise, located about 30 kilometers from the city of Kandy.

The rugged terrain, covered in mist and cloud forests, is a sight to behold. Hiking in the Knuckles Mountain Range is no walk in the park, but it’s worth the sweat and the sore muscles.

Depending on the trail you choose, the difficulty level can range from moderate to challenging, but most routes take around 7-8 hours to complete.

The best time to visit is between December and February when the weather is dry and the views are crystal clear.

4. Horton Plains National Park

Horton Plains National Park

If you’re a nature enthusiast or just looking for an adventure, make sure to add Horton Plains National Park to your list!

Located near Nuwara Eliya in Sri Lanka, this park offers a breathtaking experience with its vast grassy plains, tea estates, and stunning view of the mountains.

The hike may take about 3-4 hours and it can be challenging, but the view of the Baker’s Falls and the World’s End will make it worth every sweat and tears.

While the hike can be done all year round, it’s best to visit during the dry season, from December to March, to avoid the mist and rains that may obscure the view.

5. Pidurangala Rock

Pidurangala Rock, view on lion's rock

Have you ever gone on a hike that offered views so breathtaking, they left you speechless?

If not, it’s time to hike Pidurangala Rock in Sri Lanka! Plan a trip to this stunning location, which boasts excellent panoramic views of the landscape, including the famous Sigiriya Rock.

It’s actually the best spot to view the beauty of Lion’s Rock. No wonder it’s often considered one of the best hiking places in Sri Lanka.

The hike is moderate in difficulty and takes approximately two hours, but it’s worth every step once you reach the top.

6. Sigiriya Rock Fortress

sigiriya, lion's rock in sri lanka

Located in central Sri Lanka, this UNESCO World Heritage Site boasts breathtaking views from the top of the ancient rock fortress.

While the hike may be challenging with steep inclines and staircases, the stunning scenery makes it all worth it.

Plan for about 2 hours to complete the hike, but take your time and enjoy the journey to one of the most visited historical places in Sri Lanka.

The best time to visit Sigiriya Rock Fortress is early morning or late afternoon when the temperatures are cooler.

7. Mini Adam’s Peak

little adam's peak in ella, sri lanka, best hiking places in Sri Lanka

Hiking Mini Adam’s Peak might be just what you’re looking for. Located in Sri Lanka, this peak offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and tea plantations.

The trail is relatively short and easy, making it perfect for hikers of all levels. It takes about an hour and a half to reach the summit, where you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of the area.

The best time to visit is early in the morning or late afternoon when the sun is not too hot.

It’s one of the best places to visit on your Sri Lanka itinerary.

8. Kirigalpoththa Mountain

Looking for an adventure? Why not hike Kirigalpoththa Mountain, located in the central highlands of Sri Lanka.

This majestic mountain stands at an impressive 2,388 meters and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.

While the hike is considered challenging, it’s suitable for experienced hikers and can be completed within a day.

The best time to visit is between December and February when the weather is cool and dry.

Tips for hiking in Sri Lanka

Botanical Garden in Kandy, Sri Lanka
Botanical Garden in Kandy, Sri Lanka

If you’re planning to go hiking in Sri Lanka, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

  1. The best time to visit would be during the dry season which runs from December to March. This way you’ll avoid the monsoon and enjoy clear skies and warmer weather.
  2. Don’t forget to pack the essentials like comfortable hiking shoes, sunscreen, insect repellent, a hat, and plenty of water.
  3. You’ll also want to bring a camera to snap photos of the stunning landscapes.
  4. If you’re not familiar with the area or its trails, hiring a guide is highly recommended. They’ll not only show you the best routes to take but also educate you about the flora and fauna you’ll encounter.
  5. Last but not least, always take safety precautions. Inform someone of your plans, stay on marked trails, and be cautious of wild animals.

Now that you’re well-informed, get ready for an adventure of a lifetime in Sri Lanka!

My final thoughts on the best hiking places in Sri Lanka

With over hundreds of incredible trails for hikers to explore, Sri Lanka should be at the top of your bucket list if you’re looking for an adventure.

You’ll be surrounded by green hills and taken away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Whether it’s scaling Kirigalpoththa Mountain or admiring the breathtaking views from Mini Adam’s Peak or Sigiriya Rock Fortress, there are plenty of opportunities to get your heart pumping and experience the best that Sri Lanka has to offer.

Pidurangala Rock will help you appreciate nature, while Knuckles Mountain Range will remind you why Mother Nature is so powerful.

So what are you waiting for? Get ready, get set – explore Sri Lanka!

Before You Go: Top Tips for your Trip