Horton Plains (World's End)
Maha-Eliya was founded by Sir Robert Hortain
The Horton Plain Plateau, is a secluded wilderness sanctuary 2130 m high and offers one of Sri Lanka's most unforgettable views. Here the land plunges down a dizzy gorge to the southern foot hills and on clear days, even a glimpse of the sea more than 80 km away. The Horton Plains are the habitat of giant Rhododendron (an evergreen shrub with large clusters of trumpet shaped flowers), tree fern primrose and daffodil orchids and birds such as the Sri Lanka Whistling Thrush and Arrenga, the Shaggy Bear monkey and the blue mormon butterfly and many other endemic and endangered montane species.
Traditionally called 'Maha Eliya' the Horton Plains was founded by Sir Robert Hortain, the British Governor in 1831-37. and established as a nature reserve in 1969 and a National Park in 1988.
Things you can do
- Walking - There are many nice walks in and around Bandarawela and owing to the relatively quiet roads and the comfortable climate, walking can be very pleasurable and the perfect way to get to know the area. Among these walks, there are beautiful trails passing through the many tea estates in the area, where one can watch the tea pickers at work and admire the mountain scenery.
- Udawattekele Sanctuary
Situated to the North of the City of Kandy, this reserve has deep forests with many endemic birds, butterflies and plants. Udawattakele also has a Buddhist meditation centre.
- Knuckles Mountain Range
Its name describes its outline. The Knuckles Range consists of the Knuckles massif, the Knuckles range and the Knuckles Peaks. This mountain range offers a wonderful place for hiking and nature tours. It also holds great fascination for geologists and naturalists.
- Sripada (Adam's Peak)
Sripada (sacred footprint) or Samanalakande (butterfly mountain) has been the object of worship and pilgrimage for centuries for persons of all major religions. The British referred to this mountain as Adam's Peak. Watching the dawn from Sripada is a rare experience. On clear days you can see the shadow of the peak cast on the surrounding forest canopy as the sun rises. The 'pilgrim season' begins on the poya (full moon monthly Buddhist holiday) day in December, and runs until the start of the April monsoon.
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