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Embark on an unforgettable adventure with a pre-dawn start and a packed breakfast to Horton Plains National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its breathtaking beauty and rich biodiversity. As the sun begins to illuminate the horizon, take a guided walk along the nature trails to a vantage point known as World's End, where you'll be treated to awe-inspiring panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.

Horton Plains is a sanctuary for a variety of wildlife, offering visitors the opportunity to encounter endemic species such as the Rhino-horned and Hump-nosed Lizards, as well as highland bird species including the Sri Lanka White-eye, Dull-blue Flycatcher, and Yellow-eared Bulbul. Keep your eyes peeled for troops of Bear Monkeys and Sambar, Sri Lanka's largest species of deer, which are often spotted grazing on the plains near the park entrance.

Beyond its wildlife, Horton Plains plays a crucial role in conserving Sri Lanka's water resources, serving as the most important catchment area for almost all major rivers in the country. Its outstanding scenic beauty and conservation significance are further enhanced by the presence of diverse habitats and endemic plants and animals characteristic of the country's wet and Montane zones.

The climate of Horton Plains mirrors that of a wet Montane forest, with average annual temperatures ranging from 14-16°C and relatively low humidity around 65%. Despite the highlands' annual rainfall of about 2540mm, Horton Plains experiences over 5000mm of rainfall annually. During the dry season, temperatures drop to around 5°C during the day, accompanied by strong gale force winds and occasional overnight frost.

Named after the planter Thomas Farr's discovery in the early 19th century, Horton Plains was officially christened in honor of then Governor of Ceylon, Sir Robert Wilmot Horton, in 1834. Designated as a nature reserve in 1969, it attained the status of a National Park in 1988, underscoring its importance as a protected area for conservation and biodiversity.

At the visitors center, embark on the main trek of Horton Plains, a 9-kilometer circular route that can be completed in approximately 3 hours. Along the way, marvel at the diverse flora and fauna, from expansive grasslands to dense cloud forests teeming with wildlife. Keep an eye out for spices such as pepper, cinnamon, and cardamom growing amidst the nellu shrubs and keena trees in the forest.

The park is home to a plethora of wildlife, including herds of Sambar Deer, Strip-necked Mongooses, Long-tailed Giant Squirrels, and the endemic Bear and Toque Monkeys. Among the avian highlights are the Sri Lanka Bush Warbler, Dull-blue Flycatcher, and Sri Lanka White-eye, along with Himalayan migrants like the Pied Thrush and Kashmir Flycatcher.

In recent years, the Sambar Deer population has flourished, resulting in an increase in leopard sightings within the park. Other mammals found in Horton Plains include Wild Boar, Slender Loris, Fishing Cats, and Otters. Interestingly, until a century ago, the park was home to Elephants, but their population was hunted to extinction by British colonialists.

Today, Horton Plains remains a sanctuary of unparalleled beauty and biodiversity, offering visitors a rare glimpse into the wonders of Sri Lanka's natural heritage. Whether trekking through its pristine landscapes, marveling at its diverse wildlife, or simply soaking in its serene ambiance, a visit to Horton Plains is an experience not to be missed.






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