Adam's Peak ශ්‍රී පාද சிவனொளிபாதமலை

Adam’s Peak ශ්‍රී පාද சிவனொளிபாதமலை

Adam’s Peak

Adam’s Peak is a 2,243 m (7,359 ft) tall conical mountain located in central Sri Lanka. It is well known for the Sri Pada (Sinhala: ශ්‍රී පාද) (Tamil: சிவனொளிபாதமலை), i.e., “sacred footprint”, a 1.8 m (5 ft 11 in) rock formation near the summit, which in Buddhist tradition is held to be the footprint of the Buddha, in Hindu tradition that of Hanuman or Shiva (Tamil: சிவனொளிபாதமலை, lit. ‘Sivanolipaathamalai’), i.e., “Mountain of Shiva’s Light”, and in some Islamic and Christian traditions that of Adam, or that of St. Thomas.

The mountain is located in the southern reaches of the Central Highlands in the Ratnapura District and Nuwara Eliya district of the Sabaragamuwa Province and Central Province —lying about 40 km (25 mi) northeast of Ratnapura and 32 km (20 mi) southwest of Hatton. The surrounding region is largely forested hills, with no mountain of comparable size nearby. The region along the mountain is a wildlife reserve, housing many species varying from elephants to leopards, and including many endemic species.

Adam’s Peak is important as a watershed. The districts to the south and the east of Adam’s Peak yield precious stones—emeralds, rubies and sapphires, for which the island has been famous, and which earned for it the ancient name of Ratnadvipa.

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