Horton plains in Sri Lanka, is the coldest and windiest location in the country. It consists of ecosystems such as evergreen forests, grasslands, marshy lands and aquatic ecosystems. The great plains of the Horton was discovered by the planter Thomas Farr in the early 19th century. In 1834 it was named Horton Plains in honor of then Governor of Ceylon (1831-1837) Sir Robert Wilmot Horton.
The normal temperature of the plains is around 15 C° . In view of the large number of endemic flora and fauna species, Horton Plains was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010. On the southern edge of the Horton Plains at an altitude of 2140m is the famous World’s End. On a clear morning the World’s End boasts the view as far as the southern coast of Sri Lanka. After passing world’s end trek turn off the ridge inland to other lovely attractions such as baker’s fall and chimney pool.
The most frequent site of wildlife at Horton Plains are the herds of Sambar Deer. Among the other mammals in the park are the stripe-necked mongoose, long-tailed giant squirrel wild boar, the endemic bear monkey and torque macaque, fishing cat. Horton plains is also identified as one of the best place for bird watching in Sri Lanka.
It is difficult to reach the entrance point of Horton plains by car, therefore the ideal vehicle would be a jeep. Camping is not allowed inside the Horton plains but there are guesthouses, which are safely built for the travelers.
How to Reach
The tourists can approach Horton Plains from Nuwara Eliya through the entrance point at Pattipola while those approaching from Haputale can enter from the entrance point at Ohiya. Three kilometers drive from either entrance leads to the newly built visitor’s center, which exhibits interesting displays on the history of flora and fauna of Horton Plains.
What Time & How Long
Best time to visit Horton plains is November to March. In addition, the optimal duration of the stay at Horton Plains 1 to 3 nights. But if the traveler wishes to explore the Horton plain in one day, it would take approximately 3 hours to finish the excursion.
The trek is quiet difficult on a rainy day and the travelers should stay away from the edge of the World’s End as it is slippery and dangerous. Travelers will come across different animals and should not try to harm them or disturb them so that there won’t be any conflict.