About

Location: North Central Province | Sri Lanka
Nearest City: Anuradhapura
Nearest Airport: Bandaranayake Airport
Coordinates: 8.6192525°N 80.8301721°E
Area: 2,570 km2 (992 sq mi)
Established: December 6, 2011
Governing Body: Department of Wildlife Conservation
Country: Sri Lanka | South Asia
Status: Open
Most Popular: Elephents

Map

Where is It?

In 2005, the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, A. H. M. Fowzie, directed the Director-General of the Department of Wildlife Conservation to begin the process of creating a new national park in recognition of the area’s great biodiversity. The forest is known to receive the most rainfall in the Anuradhapura District. It is the natural habitat of leopards, elephants (officials estimate that there were 400 wild elephants in the forest at the time), samba deer, sloth bears, rabbits, and mouse-deer. The Minister believed that designating the forest as a national park would help to reduce human-elephant conflict in the area, safeguard villagers’ crops, and eradicate poaching and illegal timber cutting.

On December 6, 2011, gazette notice No 1735/21 legally recognized the park’s establishment. The park is 2,570 ha (6,400 acres) in size and is located on the left bank of the Tawalamham Hammillewa, 100 meters (330 feet) south of Kapugollewa Ihala Divul Wewa. Its eastern border begins on Kapugollewahoropothana Road, south of Palugaswewa. The park’s southern border begins near Kebbetigollewa Horowpothana on the A 29 road, and its western border is adjacent to the Welimuwapothanna Wewa.

The country’s first Elephant Holding Ground (EHG) was built in the national park in 2015, where problem elephants from throughout the country are translocated. The EHG occupies 930 ha (2,300 acres) of land within the national park and can house 40 elephants. Several sources have criticized the translocation process and the management of the EHG.

The park was expanded on September 12, 2019, to cover the property close to the Elephant Retention Centre in Horowpothana.

Best Time To Visit

 November & December

Wildlife You Might See

Wild Species knowledge is quite sparse, and therefore represents a significant opportunity for any future researcher to investigate the area and conduct ecological research in order to determine the presence of wild species in the area. If anyone is interested, please share your findings with us so that we may incorporate them into this page in order to educate our future generation.

Birds
Mammals
Reptiles
Fish

Physical Features

The average annual rainfall in the area is approximately 1,650 mm (65 in).  During the months of November and December, the northeast monsoon persists. From May to October and January to March, there are two dry periods. The park’s topography is flat, with a few rocky outcrops.      

Average temperatures are between 28-30 degrees

Annual rainfall of about 100-1500mm

Fauna

The forest is known to receive the most rainfall in the Anuradhapura district. It is the natural habitat of leopards, elephants (officials estimate that there were 400 wild elephants in the forest at the time), samba deer, sloth bears, rabbits, and mouse-deer.

Dear in Horowpathana National Park

Flora

This region’s vegetation is classified as tropical dry-mixed evergreen. Flowering occurs at various periods of the year – February/march, June/July, or October/December – so there is always some species in flower, contributing to the beauty of this location. Many of the plant species have been utilized in traditional Hela remedies for millennia, making them unique.

Best Places to Stay

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