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Climbing Little Adam's Peak With Children

TIME : 2016/2/23 17:00:53

Near the top of Little Adam’s Peak,  Ella, Sri Lanka.Beer would have been good a little later in the day.

If you know Sri Lanka you’ll know all about Adam’s Peak.

If you don’t, Adams Peak is a 2,243m mountain in the centre of Sri Lanka. It’s famous as a pilgrimage site and as a really great walk.  Near the summit a rock formation resembles a huge footprint, the Buddhist’s say it belongs to Buddha, the Hindus say it’s Shiva’s, the Muslims and Christian’s say it’s Adam’s. Hence the name.

Traditionally pilgrims and walkers make the ascent at night, arriving at the summit for dawn to see the shadow of the mountain receding with the rising sun.

If you didn’t know, we’re really into walking up mountains, hills, whatever. We’ve done plenty of trekking including the Inca Trail and Annapurna Circuit already. I’ve tried to get to Adam’s Peak before when I’ve been in Sri Lanka, but time has always stopped me. Now we’re in the right place at the right time ( as we were for the blue whales in Mirissa) so we’d really like to have a go.

So, today we are in Ella after catching the bus up from Tangalle on the coast.

Ella is a cool little mountain town and tourist hot spot in the middle of Sri Lanka. When we arrived, we discovered that Ella has its own Little Adam’s Peak, a fairly easy walk with amazing views.


Little Adam’s Peak, our Warm up for Adam’s Peak Proper

We’ll be having a crack at the real Adam’s Peak in a few days ( we hope) so we thought we’d use Little Adam’s Peak as a bit of a warm up and test, to see what the kids would make of it.

It’s not a huge walk, we took about  80 minutes from guest house to top of the peak, but there are enough steps to make kids complain. My calves are complaining now, but I was fine going up.


The kids grumbled from time to time, exactly as expected, but once we got to the top it was a different story.

Lots of “Awesome!” and ” Can we come up here again tomorrow?”

It’s a beautiful walk through a tea plantation, the views are stunning. There was low cloud this morning, but on a clear day I think you could see all the way to the coast, I couldn’t make it out.


The trick to walking with children is distraction, don’t let them think too much about the walking!

We talked about the tea, the plantation owners and the pickers. We saw birds, flowers and bugs the kids had never seen before.We had a good chuckle about the lady posing for photos for money. On the way up she was pretending to pick tea, on the way down she was posing with a large jack fruit  ( James thought she’s be posing naked if we went past a 3rd time, but he’s a very bad boy!)


Looking over the tea towards Ella Rock, another good walk,

When we got to the top the kids were amazed to be looking down on a couple of eagles, they’ve ever seen that before, cool stuff!

The boys raced back down the hill, beating us by minutes and stunning a few walkers who were taking things far too seriously. They were so chilled after the climb that we kept going, we walked on to Nine Arches bridge, passing more tea, temples and cows and then walked all the way back into Ella.

We must have walked about  8 Km this morning, all over hills, not bad going for 7 and 9 year olds, in Crocs.


Climbing Little Adam’s Peak with children, they complained a bit, but loved the view from the top.

We’re working on them now, tomorrow they want to stay in Ella and walk again, but they’re not sure about the Adam’s Peak ascent in the dark. We’ll keep talking it up and see how it goes. It won’t be any fun if they’re dead set against the idea. We’ll stock up on chocolaty snacks ( bribery is good) and keep our fingers crossed!

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