Have you ever dreamt of embarking on a trek that transports you to a world of wonder and awe? Look no further than World’s End in Sri Lanka, an enchanting and diverse expedition that will leave you captivated. As the sun rises, casting its gentle glow upon the plains, and deer graze peacefully in the tall grass, you’ll feel as though you’ve stepped into a different realm. World’s End is just one section of the impressive Horton Plains trek, where nature’s splendor awaits your exploration.
A Quick Guide to Horton Plains
- What is Horton Plains National Park?
- How much to budget
- How to reach Horton Plains
- Where to stay
- What to expect from your visit
- Must knows before you go
- What to bring to Horton Plains National Park
- Where to next
Unveiling the Beauty of Horton Plains National Park
Nestled amidst Sri Lanka’s breathtaking hill country, Horton Plains National Park unveils a vast expanse of stunning countryside. A 9km looped track guides you to the breathtaking World’s End viewpoint, perched a staggering 4000 feet above ground level. As you stand on the precipice, the name “World’s End” becomes clear, and the view stretches out before you in all its grandeur.
The park is also a sanctuary for a rich variety of wildlife, including samba deer, diverse bird species, and even elusive leopards. While spotting these creatures is a rare privilege, the sheer beauty of the plains makes the trek worthwhile.
Considering Your Budget
Proper budgeting is essential for this adventure. The trip can be costly, with transportation costs from Nuwara Eliya alone amounting to £20. Additional charges, such as vehicle size and taxes, add to the confusion. Our own trip to World’s End cost nearly £80 for two people.
While the views and experience are truly exceptional, it’s important to consider the fees beforehand. Compared to the UK, where similar hikes are often free or inexpensive, this might appear as a significant chunk of your budget. If you’re on a tight budget, there are plenty of other free treks to explore in Sri Lanka. You could also consider saving your money for alternative attractions like the ancient temple of Sigiriya or a thrilling whale-watching excursion.
However, it’s worth noting that Horton Plains National Park is well maintained, offering accessible paths for most visitors. Individuals with limited mobility or requiring wheelchair access should exercise caution when considering this trek.
Embarking on the Journey to World’s End, Sri Lanka
Do It Yourself
If you’re departing from Ella or Nuwara Eliya, booking a car or a tuk-tuk is advisable, preferably an hour and a half before sunrise. We paid £20 for a car from Nuwara Eliya, and it comfortably accommodated two passengers and luggage. Your driver will wait for you to complete the trek before taking you to the nearest train station for your onward journey.
To save money, you can inquire with other travelers in your town of stay. Given the popularity of World’s End, you’ll likely find others willing to share a car and split the costs. Staying in a nearby town like Haputale can also reduce transportation expenses. Check out our post on Lipton’s Seat in Haputale for more information on accommodation options in the area.
Take a Tour
For a hassle-free experience, consider booking a tour from Nuwara Eliya or Ella. Although you’ll miss the sunrise, tours typically include additional activities like visits to tea factories or train rides. We recommend checking out the reasonably priced tours that offer transport, entrance fees, refreshments, and a knowledgeable guide.
Where to Stay
Near World’s End
As World’s End is located within a national park, there is no accommodation available on-site. However, several hotels nearby offer a few extra hours of sleep in the morning. Horton Mountain provides basic yet stunning accommodation options.
Staying in a neighboring town and traveling to Horton Plains is a popular choice. Nuwara Eliya offers numerous hotel and guest house options to suit various budgets. For a unique experience, we recommend a lovely cottage-style house that truly captures the area’s charm.
Ella, another tourist hub, boasts several accommodation options with breathtaking countryside views. Explore the best things to do in Ella and discover the perfect place to stay for your visit.
What to Expect on the Horton Plains, World’s End Trek
The journey to Horton Plains is an adventure in itself, with steep and winding roads. We recommend making stops along the way for some sunrise photography, as the views are truly remarkable. Your driver will handle ticket purchases, guiding you through the somewhat chaotic process. If you require assistance, don’t hesitate to ask, as the system can be confusing.
Once inside the park, a serene calm envelops you, accompanied by the sight of deer grazing peacefully, undisturbed by onlookers. Before setting off, be sure to use the toilets at the entrance, as there are no facilities available along the trek.
The trek to World’s End forms a loop around the national park, showcasing its finest sights. We suggest starting in the opposite direction to the crowds, ensuring a tranquil and solitary experience for the first half of your walk. A guide is not necessary, as the path is well-marked and mostly easy to navigate, with only a few steep sections.
World’s End, Sri Lanka
World’s End marks the midpoint of the trek, captivating visitors with its awe-inspiring scenery. The unprotected cliff edge drops a staggering 4000 feet, offering panoramic views that extend as far as the eye can see. Arriving early is crucial to avoid obstructive cloud cover, although even then, the view is not guaranteed.
Numerous vantage points provide excellent opportunities for breathtaking photos. However, exercise caution when approaching the edge, as tales of mishaps and accidents serve as a reminder of the need for safety.
Other Sights Along the Way
As you traverse the trek, you’ll encounter a diverse range of habitats. Keen birdwatchers can bring along binoculars to catch glimpses of avian wonders. Keep an eye out for Bakers Falls, a charming waterfall that provides respite from the sun’s warmth. Also, don’t miss the smaller viewpoint aptly named “Mini World’s End,” boasting its own unique beauty.
While this may not be the most thrilling trek in Sri Lanka, it offers a relaxed and pleasant morning adventure. The well-maintained paths and easy-to-follow route ensure a smooth and peaceful experience.
Things to Know
- Allocate around 3-4 hours for the trek, including time for photographs.
- Be prepared to pay a small fee for the use of toilets.
- Take a moment to explore the museum near the entrance/exit if you have spare time.
- Throughout your walk, keep noise levels to a minimum, increasing your chances of spotting wildlife. As the day progresses and the paths become more crowded, early starts become increasingly appealing.
- Pack plenty of water, sunscreen, a hat, snacks, and a sweater for the cool early morning temperatures.
- Remember to avoid plastic; however, plastic water bottles are permitted, certain plastic items like labels and caps may be removed. Consider using a filter water bottle for convenience.
- Don’t forget your camera and binoculars to capture the beauty of the surroundings.
How High Is World’s End, Sri Lanka?
World’s End lookout offers a jaw-dropping view from the Horton Plains plateau, where a sheer cliff drop of 880m awaits. As you gaze upon the world seemingly vanishing below, you’ll understand the origins of its name.
How Long Does It Take to Climb World’s End?
The World’s End trek is considered moderately strenuous and typically takes around 3 hours to complete. The duration depends on your walking pace and the number of mesmerizing photo opportunities you encounter along the way.
Where to Next?
If you’re yearning for more incredible hikes in Sri Lanka, consider exploring the following options before planning your trip:
- The Knuckles Mountain Range: Embark on a two-day trek through Sri Lanka’s diverse landscapes.
- Lipton’s Seat: Enjoy panoramic views from atop a tea plantation and savor a morning stroll through misty tea fields.
- Lover’s Leap Waterfall: Hike to the impressive Lover’s Leap waterfall and ascend to the summit for breathtaking views over Nuwara Eliya.
Thank you for reading! We hope our comprehensive guide aids in your preparation for an unforgettable journey. If you discover any additional insights, please share them in the comments below. Feel free to share this article and follow us for more travel inspiration and valuable tips. DHPL Travels