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Sri Lanka Geography

Most of Sri Lanka is ringed by (almost endless) sandy beaches, and small, irregular lagoons.

The coastal areas merge into a flat coastal plain, one that gently rises into the foothills of a mountainous region, central and south.

Intermixed throughout those mountains are numerous deep valleys and gorges. About 40% of the landmass is heavily forested.

Pidurutalagala, the country's highest point at 8,261 ft. (2,518 m), along with Adam's Peak (the country's famous religious site) both rise in the mountains directly east of Colombo.

The country's lowest point is the Indian Ocean at 0 m.

Numerous short and narrow rivers rise in the central highland; the most significant include the Kala, Kalu, Kirindi and Yan rivers.

Off the northwestern coast of Sri Lanka a chain of limestone shoals, known as Adam's Bridge, separates the Gulf of Mannar from the Palk Strait, and runs along the water to the southeastern coast of India.

At one point it was completely passable, but Adam's Bridge broke apart in the late 15th century when a cyclone hit the region. Today, the bridge is 18 miles (30 km) long, and ranges from 3 - 30ft. (1 - 10m) deep in some areas.

Sri Lanka Photographs

Adam's Bridge

Satellite image of Adam's Bridge, Sri Lanka

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This page was last modified on April 7, 2017.