Video: Sri Lanka

A short video of a night hike to the top of Adam's Peak (Sri Pada). From a trip we took to Sri Lanka in 2004.

Video: Sri Lanka

About a week before Wayne and I leave on any trip I start campaigning for him to bring the video camera. He likes to travel light, so the prospect of carrying an extra camera, charger, batteries, and bag is never well received. The good news is that by the time we get to the airport, more times than not we have the video camera in tow.

We started bringing it along six or seven years ago when we went to visit our friend Massimo in East Africa (Tanzania). After we returned I edited the footage and we were able to share the video with some of our friends, we even shared it with complete strangers one night at World-o-Rama, a screening of people's travel videos.

Anyways, It's been a (very) long running joke around here that I still haven't edited our Sri Lanka/Thailand video from three years ago. It is coming up now because we just got back from New Zealand, and now that footage is on deck.

I was scanning through the Sri Lanka footage the other night and thought you might enjoy seeing a few of the places we visited. For starters I edited some of the clips from our hike up the sacred mountain of Adam's Peak, also known as Sri Pada.

There are various beliefs surrounding the mountain, one is that Buddha is supposed to have left the print of his left foot on Adam's Peak and then in one great stride stepped down in Siam (now Thailand) leaving the impression of his right foot there. Some Muslim's believe the footprint to be that of Adam (hence the name); and Hindus believe it was that of the god Siva. Christians come as well. As you can imagine, a fantastic mix of people congregate each pilgrimage season each year to make the ascent - young, old, healthy, handicapped, rich and poor. It all plays out in what could arguably be one of the most stunning landscapes on earth. And if the beauty above ground wasn't enough, fittingly, the earth below Sri Pada is rich with rubies, sapphires, topaz, aquamarine and other gems.

Spoiler Alert: As you can probably tell, Wayne shot some of the video. The footage from the summit is his. By the time we left on the hike that night, my stomach was all messed up and I never made to to the top. I ended up watching the sunrise from just below the summit alongside a stray dog (who makes a brief appearance in the background of one of the shots) and countless songbirds. The outhouse clinging to the side of the mountain (housing multiple tarantulas) was my base-camp for the rest of the night. I made a promise to myself to go back again and finish. That being said, I'm not sure I would trade the experience of a couple hours alone on the side of a Sri Lankan mountain at sunrise for anything. In the video look for the triangular shadow the mountain casts at sunrise.

Some related links: Sri Pada website, Sri Pada wikipedia page, and Sri Pada on Buddhanet.

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Hi, came across this by accident and so glad I did! I spent a year in SriLanka and climbed Sri Pada twice- once with fellow volunteers, and once with a bunch of disabled kids from the home I worked in. It's so nice to see your video, it brought me right back! I miss it so much, hopefully I'll visit there again one day!!


Hi Heidi, When I was a kid my parents took me to Sri Pada, but I was unable to climb it as I was then a very sick kid.Your video has captured the feeling of Sri Pada, and its beauty so well. After watching this very short clip I feel as If I have travelled with you, and I feel a sense of releave, calmness, and freedom. This time when I go to Sri Lanka, I will no doubt climb Sri Pada.Thank you very much for this lovely vedio, and for making me feel so much better.


Thanks for the great video! I climbed Sri Padha last April. One shot in your video brought back vivid memories of the interminable climb in the night, seemingly straight up to the stars!


Hey this is a great video. I am a Sri Lankan Living in the UK and have been to Sri Padha once. You should be proud of the fact that you attempted to climb it, a feat most Sri Lankan have not even thought of. All the best.


I loved your video, Heidi! One of my favorite things to do is to look up different places on Flickr and Wikipedia and daydream of adventures in other lands. (Okay I'm a dork!) Your video was so inspiring and makes me want to dive into an adventure right now!


How exotic. Thanks for bringing another part of the world to us. I want that statue!!!


Heidi, I am thankful for your lovely cooments about Sri Pada and Sri lanka. I been a Sri Lankan have not yet discoverd the entire little island. I am amazed every day and every place I travell in this small but diverse island.


Heidi, your video made me pull out a thrift store find that I had tucked away intending to get to later. Well, later it is. The Ceylon Daily News Cookery Book 5th edition (1st edition was printed in 1929!) is like going back in time. The ingredients alone make me want to visit the markets, and fire up the stove. For example, cadjunuts, bombay onions, bandakka, rampa, Maldive fish.


The video really brings to life the places you mention -- the shots of the mountain are stunning. I hope you have more to share.

Susan at Food "Blogga"

awesome!!! your gift of writing is amazing, everytime i start reading your posts, I am amazed by how interesting you make everything seem!! Do they have lots of Lord Ganesh idols/statues there as well? there are heaps in India!!


What an amazing experience and one I would have missed if I were you ... I am always the one *not* wanting to take along the camera and my Husband does. I think you may be right but shhh don't tell him ;)


You might not have reached the top, but your experience sounds breathtaking. Sri Lanka is high on my list of places to go--many thanks for sharing this!

Lisa (Homesick Texan)

It sure looks like you like your exotic destination travel. Are there any places you have not been?


Heidi, I have been a fan of your site for quite some time but you have just been skyrocketed through the roof in my esteem book. I went to Sri Lanka last summer and can't wait to go back when time allows. It gave me a new appreciation for curry! :) Did you eat juggery? Yum!


You are a constant inspiration Heidi - and a source of joy and relief in my otherwise v. busy day.


Wow, what a fascinating experience you had. This really looks incredible, and I am glad you are consistantly able to persuade Wayne to bring the camera - if only so other people can share in your travels! Thanks for posting : )


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