The air is hot and humid, tiny rain-soaked tracks wind through dense, tall trees. The stillness is unreal, dreamlike.
Pockets of pre-historic, virgin jungle in the heart of Sri Lanka, rainforests are incredibly beautiful treasure troves of biodiversity. Once, not so long ago, they consisted over 26% of the land area. The 2% of forest cover that is left today is under heavy threat, despite their protected status. So, it is well worth taking a little time to explore this fast disappearing wilderness. Teeming with fauna and flora, mostly endemic - flowers, birds, insects, reptiles and mammals all bound together in a unique eco-system, they are lost worlds hidden from 21st century life. The two types: Lowland (Below 1000m) and Montane rainforests (above 1000m) contain almost all the endemic flora and fauna with over 60% of 306 endemic tree species are found in Lowland rainforests and a further 61 species being shared with the Montane rainforests and dry forests. The three most visited are: the Sinharaja Rainforest Reserve – a national park and a biodiversity hotspot of international significance, it is designated as Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Knuckles Forest Reserve - a series of isolated cloud forests home to rare flora and fauna – mostly endemic. The Peak Wilderness Sanctuary encircles Adam’s Peak and is famed for the world’s rarest toad – rediscovered after 133 years.