Hiking to Little Adam’s Peak (or Mini Adam’s Peak) was one of my favourite things to do in Ella, Sri Lanka. It’s a well-indicated hike that can easily be done from Ella’s main street and the views from the top are truly breathtaking!
With its beautiful mountains, lush green vegetation and tea plantations, the region around Ella is considered to be one of the most beautiful parts of Sri Lanka, and I couldn’t agree more! It’s a wonderful destination for lovers of the outdoors, and I ended up staying here for longer than I had initially planned.
Little Adam’s Peak was named after the holy Adam’s Peak, which is located close to Dalhousie. The shape of both peaks is similar, though Little Adam’s Peak is smaller and easier to climb. Mini Adam’s Peak is also less crowded than its big brother, as the hike to Adam’s Peak is a pilgrimage hike.
In this guide, you will find everything you need to know if you’re planning on hiking to Little Adam’s Peak in Ella. It includes the best time to hike, how to get there, what to bring and some useful tips.
A complete guide on hiking to Little Adam’s Peak in Ella, Sri Lanka
How to get to Little Adam’s Peak in Ella
If you start hiking in the main street of Ella, you’ll have to follow the street for about 2 km (1.2 mi). You’ll then find the trail leading to Little Adam’s Peak on the right side of the street, next to the Ella Flower Garden Resort. It’s easy to find and there’s also a small parking lot there. I used Maps.me to navigate and had no problem finding it. Once you’re on the path, you’ll find plenty of indications leading to Little Adam’s Peak.
The first part of the hike has a moderate incline and it will lead you along beautiful tea plantations. I only saw this on the way back though, as it was still dark when I was hiking up. Next, you’ll hike up some stairs and pass the Flying Ravana Zipline (you can read more about this later in this post). From here, the real climb begins, and after climbing plenty of stairs, you will reach Little Adam’s Peak, which is easy to recognize thanks to its Buddha statue.
Take some time to take in the beautiful views when you’re there, it’s a truly magnificent place! There are plenty of stunning viewpoints and rocks offering great photo possibilities as well.
Tip: I highly recommend hiking further to the next peak as well, as I thought the view from there was even more spectacular! You’ll need to do some rock scrambling down and follow a path back up to reach the next peak, but it’s totally worth it.
When to do the hike
Best time to visit Ella
The best time to visit Ella is during summer (from March to June) or winter (from December to February), as these are the dryest times of the year. The temperatures stay more or less the same all year round, but you might experience more rainfall from the months of July to November.
Best time to hike to Little Adam’s Peak
When it comes to hiking to Little Adam’s Peak, the best time to leave is early in the morning, when it’s still dark, so that you can see the sunrise from the top. You’ll find more information on this topic below.
If you’re not an early bird, you could hike to Little Adam’s Peak for sunset as well. It depends on the time of the year that you’re visiting, but when I was there in March, it often rained during the afternoon, while the mornings were pretty clear. I’ve seen pictures of incredible sunsets too though, so it’s up to you to decide when you want to do the hike.
I wouldn’t recommend doing the hike during the day, though, as it can get quite hot (+/- 30 °C / 86 °F). I started hiking back down around 9 am and it was getting pretty warm already!
Hiking to Little Adam’s Peak for sunrise
I recommend doing the hike to Little Adam’s Peak for sunrise. Not only is it magical to watch the sunrise over the surrounding mountains, but it’s also cooler and less crowded early in the morning.
The time you’ll have to start hiking to see the sunrise depends on the time of the year that you’re visiting Ella. Make sure to start hiking from the main street 1 hour before sunrise. You can always ask your hotel for advice – they’ll know at what time you should leave.
I visited Ella in March and started hiking at 5 am. I started on the main street, arrived at Little Adam’s Peak around 6 am and was well in time to watch the sunrise. It takes a while for the sun to rise over the surrounding hills, so there’s no need to hurry.
When I started hiking, there were already some tuk-tuks in the streets, so you could ask one to drop you off at the start of the trail if you don’t want to walk all the way. It’s good to know that they will charge more than during the day though, as there aren’t so many tuk-tuks this early in the morning.
How long/difficult is the hike to Little Adam’s Peak
The height of Little Adam’s peak is 1141 m (3743 ft) above sea level, but as you’ll already start the hike from a high elevation, you’ll only need to hike up a few hundred meters.
From the main road of Ella, the hike takes approximately one hour. It’s not a difficult hike, but you will have to climb plenty of stairs to get to the top. The hike is 1.5 km (0.9 mi) long, but If you want to make it a bit shorter, you could ask a tuk-tuk driver to drop you off at the start of the hiking trail. From here, it takes approximately 40 minutes to hike to Little Adam’s Peak.
The first part of the trail is paved. If you want to hike to the peak right after Adam’s Peak, however, you’ll need to do some rock scrambling, but nothing too difficult. I highly recommend doing this because the view from here is stunning!
What to bring
- Water: Bringing water is essential on any hike! I recommend bringing 1,5 litres with you because it gets hot quickly and you don’t want to be forced to head back down because you ran out of water. There are vendors selling drinks and snacks on the trail, but they will only be there around 8 or 9 am.
- Snacks: Even though this is not a long hike, it’s always a good idea to bring some snacks with you when you’re hiking. I was happy I could eat something before hiking back down.
- Comfortable shoes: The first part of the hike can easily be done on flipflops, but if you want to hike to the other peak (which I recommend), you’ll need to do a little bit of scrambling over rocks (nothing too difficult), so hiking shoes or comfortable sneakers are recommended for this part.
- Headlamp: If you’re hiking for sunrise or sunset, it’s essential to bring a good headlamp.
- Camera: Little Adam’s Peak is a stunning place, so make sure you bring your camera with you to shoot some epic shots!
Flying Ravana zipline
You’ll pass the Flying Ravana Zipline on the way to Adam’s Peak, so if ziplining over lush tea estates is something you’d like to do on the way back, this is your chance! The zipline costs $20 (I’m not including the price in Rupees because it fluctuates a lot) and stretches over more than half a kilometre.
Note that the zipline opens at 9 am, so you might have to wait a bit if you’re doing the sunrise hike. Though I didn’t go zip lining myself, I’ve met some people in Ella who did it and they loved it!
Hiking further to the Nine Arch Bridge
The hike to Little Adam’s Peak is easy to combine with a visit to the beautiful Nine Arch Bridge. In order to reach it, you’ll need to head back the same way as you came. Once you reach the street, you can either turn left or right, as there are multiple ways leading to the bridge:
- If you turn left, you’ll find a path leading to the bridge on the right side of the road after 1 km (0.6 mi) of walking. There’s a parking lot and a big sign indicating the way to the bridge here, so it’s easy to find. It takes approximately 25 minutes to reach the bridge from the start of the path to Little Adam’s Peak.
- If you turn right, you’ll only need to walk on the street for 50 m (31 ft). There’s a path on the left side of the road that leads to the bridge. Do make sure to bring a map with you if you follow this path, as it’s a bit harder to find the way to the bridge from here.
Eco tip: Please don’t fly your drone at the Nine Arch Bridge. It upsets the bees and there are daily bee attacks caused by drones. When I was there, both drones, as well as people, got attacked and I’ve heard it’s super painful.
Top tips for hiking to Little Adam’s Peak
- Bring plenty of water and snacks with you. Although it’s not a very difficult hike, it gets very hot so it’s important to hydrate.
- Hike further to the peak after Little Adam’s Peak, the view from there is breathtaking.
- Wear comfortable (hiking) shoes, especially if you’re planning on hiking to the next peak.
- Use Maps.me to navigate to the start of the trail. From here on, the path is well indicated with signs that will point you in the right direction.
- Do the Flying Ravana Zipline or hike further to the Nine Arch Bridge on your way back.
Little Adam’s Peak or Ella Rock: Which hike is the best?
I’ve hiked both to Mini Adam’s Peak and Ella Rock and enjoyed both of the hikes. However, I did think the view from Little Adam’s Peak was more beautiful than the view from Ella Rock. So if you can only do one, I would suggest hiking to Little Adam’s Peak.
If you have the time, however, I would recommend hiking to Ella Rock as well if you’re looking for a more challenging hike. I actually preferred the path to Ella Rock because it starts on train tracks, takes you through beautiful sceneries, and it’s a bit of an adventure to get there – I actually got lost in the jungle on my way there.
I will write a guide about this hike in a separate post though!
Hiking to Little Adam’s Peak in Sri Lanka – Conclusion
I hope you enjoyed this guide on how to hike to Little Adam’s Peak in Ella. It’s an experience I highly recommend doing when you’re in there. It was one of my favourite hikes in Sri Lanka and I’d do it again in a heartbeat. The peak is easily accessible and the hike isn’t too hard either. Although you do have to climb up some steps.
Read more about Sri Lanka:
– 12 Best Things to Do in Arugam Bay, Sri Lanka
– Climbing Ambuluwawa Tower in Sri Lanka: Everything You Need to Know
– Boat Safari in Gal Oya National Park: A Complete Guide
– 6 Places to Visit on the East Coast of Sri Lanka
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