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Horton Plains and the New Access Road

Luxury Holidays Asia

Horton Plains and the New Access Road

Sri Lanka is a must-visit tourist destination for both nature lovers and avid hikers, with many places to discover. Among the many fascinating tourist attractions in the country, Horton Plains takes a special place. Embark on a captivating journey discovering endemic wildlife, dramatic landscapes, and diverse ecosystems.

Get the opportunity to witness the pristine beauty of this highland gem nestled in the heart of Sri Lanka. Let’s dive a little deeper in and learn all you need to know about the Horton plains, including the new access road.

What is Horton Plains?

Horton Plains is a national park situated at an elevation of 6900-7500 ft from sea level. Located in Ohiya, the park is also a world heritage site that offers shelter for a large amount of flora and fauna. This marvel of nature lies at the eastern boundaries of the Upper Montane Forest range of Central Highlands.

Formerly known as “Maha Eliya Tenna”, the area was designated as a wildlife sanctuary in 1969 and upgraded to a national park in 1988. Since its inception, Horton Plains National Park has become one of the most visited tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. The area also holds significant historical importance as archaeologists were able to discover stone tools that date back to the Balangoda Culture.

The weather around the Horton Plain National Park varies considerably throughout the day. Temperatures can get as high as 27 degrees Celsius during the day and reach around 5 degrees Celsius as the night creeps in. The park also receives an average rainfall of around 5000mm, which nourishes the ecosystem thoroughly.

One of the most impressive aspects of the Horton Plains is the uniqueness of the biodiversity that it shelters. You can discover over

  • 750 plant variants
  • 24 species of mammals
  • 87 species of birds
  • 09 species of reptiles
  • 15 species of amphibians
  • 02 species of fish on your visit to Horton Plains National Park.

These combined with picturesque landscapes, make Horton Plains a must-visit place in Sri Lanka.

Things to see in Horton Plains

World's End

An escarpment with a drop of nearly 4000 ft. Witness breathtaking vistas, sheer cliffs, and mist-covered landscapes in an awe-inspiring and unforgettable natural creation. Mini World’s End is another escarpment with a drop of 1000ft just 25 minutes from the World’s End.

Baker's Falls

A gorgeous 66ft waterfall with magnificent views and a serene atmosphere.

Kirigalpotha Peak

The second tallest peak of Sri Lanka, with a great view of the surrounding area.

Things to do in Horton Plains

Trekking and Hiking

Trek along a 10km long loop around the park with many side roads leading to park’s attractions.

Observing flora

Explore fascinating flora such as Rhododendron, Binara, Nelu, and 63 other endemic plants in Sri Lanka.

Observing fauna

Explore creatures like Mountain Leopards, Sambar beer, dull-blue flycatchers, and many other endemic creatures in Sri Lanka.

Go camping

Camp in one of the many designated camping sites in Horton Plains National Park and enjoy a truly unique experience.

How To Get There?

With the introductions out of the way, let’s discuss the ways in which you can reach the Horton Plains. The most common entrances are in Pattipola(north) and Ohiya(south). There are trains available for both Pattipola and Ohiya. Hill Country Railways never disappoints and will offer the most scenic journey. You can easily arrange a local transport in both towns to reach the entrance of the park.

Taxis and car rentals are also a great choice. You can easily find rentals from any of the major cities in Sri Lanka. Some of the closest major cities are,

  • Nuwara Eliya – 32km
  • Ambewela – 17km
  • Haputale – 47km
  • Ella – 64km
  • Bandarawela – 45km
  • Colombo – 188km
  • Kandy – 120km

Keep in mind that there is no public transportation available along the road that leads to Horton Plains.

The New Access Road to Horton Plains

The road that led to Hortin Plains from Dayagama was inaccessible for the longest time. However, on the 28th of October, 2023, the Department of Wildlife Conservation reopened the Dayagama for public use. This entrance is 5km away from the main entrance and aims to provide a safer and more convenient experience for tourists.

The statement from government officials stated that the newly opened road will be a natural pathway for tourists to walk or ride bicycles. However, entering any vehicle other than a bicycle is strictly prohibited under any circumstances.

Planning Your Trip to Horton Plains

Doing a little research about this national park will definitely make you want to visit it in your upcoming holidays. There are a few things that you can keep in mind to make the best out of your visit to the Horton Plains. Firstly, Horton Plains is an area where you must walk a lot to explore. There are many paths leading to many destinations, so knowing where you are going is important. Having an expert travel guide with you is a great way to easily navigate the park and hit all the places you want to visit.

Going trekking to a country with tropical weather is exciting, and preparing what’s necessary is crucial. You can expect sudden climate changes like rain, humidity, and mist, along with a chilly atmosphere. So, make sure to carry enough water, wear proper clothing, and bring things like sun cream for your trip. The best times to visit Horton Plains are the months from December to April.

Why Choose Us?

Choosing LHA as your travel partner will ensure an unparalleled experience tailored to your needs. With our years of experience and local expertise, we can provide you with all that you would ever want on your journey.

Our tour guides are trained professionals with good knowledge of the area and proper first-aid training. They are very good at handling emergencies and will offer their insights to you without hesitation.

To experience an amazing time at super affordable rates, contact us. We will make sure that you get the best out of your time in Sri Lanka.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. The entrance fee can range from $20 to $50 depending on the season and time of the day of the visit.

There are a few restrictions like no littering, staying on designated paths, and not disturbing the wildlife.

The months from December to April are the best months to visit the Horton Plains.

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