Horton Plains National Park is a part of the Central Highlands and with a varying bio-diversity that covers from the insects, butterflies, sambars, monkeys and the lovely fauna. The highlights of Horton Plains could be put to the World’s End, The Bakers Fall and the adventurous trek through the park.
Leaving Nuwara Eliya, we drove towards the Nanu-Oya railway station, change course and drove among the narrow roads towards Horton Plains. We passed the Ambewela farms area which is quite large and has a retail shop which customers could direct purchase dairy products such as Cheese, Milk etc. The road condition is sometimes a little rough but it is drivable in a car / van. Of course there is the option of hiring a Van from Nuwara Eliya (this is most preferred by the Tour Guides) which would minimize the wastage of the car / van.
The driving towards the park entrance would take approximately 45 minutes from Nuwara Eliya and the final parts are driving up a mountain. The road is quite curvy and needs precision driving and the vehicle to be in good condition.
We reached the Horton Plains National park ticketing counter at around 06.15 a.m. and had to wait about 30 minutes to purchase the tickets. There were lots of Chinese travelers trying to bargain over the pricing but at the end paid the normal foreign rate of course.
After purchasing the tickets, you have to drive another few kilometers on a “Not-so-good” road through wilderness area. The road condition is a little rustic because of the mud-pools and stuff. Other than this, the scenery is quite amazing as all you see around is mountains, mist and the chill winds of the morning!
There comes a point a lot of cars and vans are parked on the sides of the road and a small board is displayed “Car Park” but the car park would be definitely full. So, I had to park the car a little distant from the usual location but managed to find a quite good spot. The climate is quite cool and the Jersey is much recommended. You will have to walk towards the Bungalow on the top and there it has the Cafeteria and the washrooms.
With the Name-Board for Horton Plains, we started the Trek at Horton Plains at around 07.30 a.m. First you only see bushes and greenery around you for a lot of the distance. After the warmup, the trek comes to a place where the route is divided into two areas. Both the directions are right and we chose to go see the Bakers Falls area first. The rough paths across grass, passing a small pond or two and a stream close-by makes it interesting but makes you start to sweat. I had to take off the Sweaters and get into my usual clothing of the T-shirt and the Shorts of course.
After hours of walking of course we came to the Bakers Falls area. We were pretty hammered by this time as we had no knowledge of the trek. We did not carry any water or snacks for the road. Hence, we were panting like kids after a race and wanted the trek to end of course. My friend Ryan was so much tired that we made regular stops and he was lying on the grass like a dead body sometimes just for relaxing…
The Bakers Fall is a pretty sight for us after hours of walking though the Horton Plains. On the man-made platform, the weather drizzles touching us give a cool feeling and a pump of energy for sure.
Leaving the Bakers Fall and continuing on the trek, we had to go down some rough routes of course. By rough I mean through a jungle-kinda area without proper routing. Another hour or so walking through this area brings us over a plateau and again through the bushy mountains and the warm weather.
The World’s End, the highlight of the Horton Plains trek is my most favorite actually. You see a small roof of a construction down below, a network of lakes or ponds in the distance, mountains all around you. The wind was all Okay and this is the ultimate spot for Selfies!!
There is a pathway to climb up a few more steps above the usual World’s End location as well. As a local, I know for a fact that lots of young couples try to suicide by leaping off this location. Foolishness I must say because sometimes either the girl or the boy survives and has to face life thereafter. My friend told me that sometimes back a German tourist fell off this cliff and the authority had to start a rescue search and luckily was able to locate him alive.
As we were very tired by this time, we wanted to return to the car and get to our hotel. We thought that we will end the trek soon and walked in a fast pace. But, it was all walking endlessly… Walking, talking and then again walking…. You meet up people who are also heading the same direction or the opposite direction as well. (People who choose to see World’s end from the selection point).
Finishing up the trek, I must say the walking could be around 9 KMs of course. We completed the trek around 11.45 a.m. and were very tired for sure. The small cafeteria outside is a great place for a small snack. They had a few food items left. No electricity for sure as the altitude was pretty much and the distance is quite the lead. Oh, No Cellphone reception for any network (Mobitel or Dialog for me)
We drive on the same direction we came to exit the park and also to come to Nuwara Eliya to end the tiring but amazing trek to Horton Plains.
|When to start||at 0600h|
|What to bring||A camera / a bottle of water / packed breakfast|
|What to wear||Sweaters / Shoes / Jogging pants and a Monkey Hat|
|Total time for the Trek||05 hours – including regular stops and breaks|