Sri Lanka Wildlife Tour

Sri Lanka is home to an extraordinary range of wildlife. Several national parks, some of them which are recognised as Heritage Sites of the world boast of elephants, sloth bears, crocodiles, monkeys and a colourful collection of migratory and endemic birds. Join us in the comprehensive wildlife holiday with a choice of unique accommodations. Go on safaris and night walks to spot the exotic animals at Wilpattu Wildlife Park, grab a chance to see the Asian elephant at Udawalawe National Park, and there will be many opportunities to see the Sri Lankan leopard at Yala National Park.

End your holiday with a whale watching tour to see Blue and Sperm Whales and Mirissa and perhaps extend your holiday on the golden beaches of Sri Lanka.

Best time for wildlife:

December to January - Bundala National Park for birdlife, Mirissa for whale watching

November to April - Dolphin watching in Kalpitya

July to September - Minneriya National Park, Yala National Park, Wilpattu National Park.

Touring Style - a private tour with your own driver who also acts as your guide.

Prices are seasonal, include hotels, breakfast, professional touring and transfers. Starts from:

GBP 1600 per person sharing a twin room, Standard Class Hotels

GBP 1775 per person sharing a twin room, Superior Class Hotels

GBP 3305 per person sharing a twin room, Deluxe Class Hotels.

International and domestic airfares are extra..

Sri Lanka Wildlife Tour at a glance
  • Day 1: Arrival Colombo and travel to Negombo
  • Day 2: Negombo to Wilpattu National Park
  • Day 3: Wilpattu National Park
  • Day 4: Sigiriya Rock Fortress
  • Day 5: Polonnaruwa
  • Day 6: Travel to Kandy via Matale
  • Day 7: Udawalawe National Park
  • Day 8: Udawalawe National Park
  • Day 9: Drive to Yala National Park
  • Day 10: Yala National Park and Bundala National Park
  • Day 11: Drive fromTissamaharama to Deniyaya
  • Day 12: Sinharaja Biosphere
  • Day 13: Departure for Galle and beach extension
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Day 1: Arrival Negombo

You will be met at the airport on arrival by your guide cum driver who will be with you for your entire holiday.  Transfer to your hotel in Negombo for overnight.

Distance and journey time: 8 km, approx 20 mins

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Day 2: Negombo to Wilpattu National Park

Transfer from Negombo to Wilpattu National Park for an afternoon safari.
This is the land haunted by big cats of the island paradise. Recording a vast number of Sri Lankan Leopards, Wilpattu National Park has been named due to 'Willus' (Natural Lakes) studded throughout the park. Apart from big cats & precious flora, the park is well known for a healthy population of elephant, sloth bear, spotted deer, mongoose, and water buffalo.

Overnight near the Park.

Distance and journey time: 170 km, 4 hrs

Day 3: Wilpattu National Park

Another full day safari awaits you.

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Day 4: Sigiriya Rock Fortress

In the morning transfer to Sigiriya. 

Sigiriya, also known as Lion Rock, built on top of a huge boulder in the 5th century. A palace. A rock fortress. The hidden castle of King Kasyapa.
Sigiriya consists of 1200 steps. The first part of the visit is a leisurely walk through the pleasure gardens. Then one starts to climb. There are two areas where one can take a break on the way up. The entire duration of the experience takes approximately 1.5 to 2.5 hours depending on the speed at which you want to climb

Overnight in Sigiriya.

Distance and journey time: 128 km, approx 3.30 hrs

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Day 5: Polonnaruwa

In the morning transfer from Sigiriya to Polonnaruwa. 

Polonnaruwa is the second most ancient of Sri Lanka’s kingdoms, Polonnaruwa was first declared the capital city by King Vijayabahu I, who defeated the Chola invaders in 1070 to reunite the country once more under a local leader. Today the ancient city of Polonnaruwa remains one of the best planned archaeological relic sites in the country, standing testimony to the discipline and greatness of the Kingdom’s first rulers.

Polonnaruwa is divided into 4 areas. The visit starts with the Kings Palace and Baths. We then visit 3 different tooth relic temples and then proceed to the stupas. The visit ends on the far western side of the complex where you will see one of the most astonishing Buddha rock carvings in Sri Lanka. One can walk, bike or drive between locations.

Overnight in Sigiriya.

Distance and journey time: 58 km, 1.30 hrs each way.

 

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Day 6: Travel to Kandy

the morning transfer to Kandy, the World Heritage Site and last royal capital of Sri Lankan kings. Tour of Kandy to include Temple of the Tooth Relic, Kandy Jakes, Kandy Town and Bazaar, arts and crafts centre, and a lapidary. Evening visit to the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic and cultural show.

Distance and journey time: 110 km, approx 3 hrs

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Day 7: Travel to Udawalawe National Park

Drive to Udawalawe. Visit the Elephant Transit Home established to rehabilitate orphaned elephant calves for ultimate release back into the wild.

Overnight in Udawalawe National Park.

203 km, approx 6 hrs

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Day 8: Udawalawe National Park

Enjoy a morning and afternoon safari at the Udawalawe National Park.
Be ready to witness trumpets across the border as you approach elephant country around the corner! Marked by relatively large herds of elephants, the national park proves to be one of the best places one could observe them in their natural habitat. Hop into a safari jeep and head into the park, to observe the herd of giants, spotted deer, sambar, barking deer, water buffalo, and jackal.

Overnight in Udawalawe National Park.

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Day 9: Drive to Yala National Park

Transfer from Udawalawe to Tissamaharama. Depending on the time, you may join an afternoon safari at Yala National Park.

Distance and journey time: 85 km, 2.30 hrs.

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Day 10: Yala National Park and Bundala National Park

Safari at Yala National Park.
Spreading into a vast 1259 km. Yala is the heartland of wildlife in Sri Lanka. There are herds of elephant, sloth bear, spotted deer, jackal, extensively populated birdlife as well as the highest density of leopards in the world.

Afternoon safari at Bundala National Park.
With its lagoons, reservoirs, and salt pans, Bundala National Park offers an oasis for all kinds of birds extending from bee-eaters to greater flamingos, the latter recording over 2000 in number at a time.

Overnight at Yala National Park.

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Day 11: Tissamaharama to Deniyaya

Transfer from Yala National Park to Deniyaya, a town located on the edge of the Sinharaja Rainforest.

Overnight in Deniyaya.

Distance and journey time: 144 km, approx 5 hrs

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Day 12: Sinharaja Biosphere

Transfer from Deniyaya to Sinharaja.

With an average annual rainfall between 3000 to 6000 mm, the Sinharaja Biosphere proves to be one of the finest examples of tropical rainforests in the world. Declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site & Biosphere Reserve, Sinharaja treasures an absolute variation of both flora & fauna with most of them being endemic. Walk in through either entrance - Kudawa Pitadeniya or Morning Side - for a refreshing treat covering fauna varieties extending from spotted deer, hog deer, golden palm civet, stripe necked mongoose as well as butterflies & reptiles.

In the evening, engage in bird watching and a night time safari where the Slender Loris, Golden palm civet and the lesser flying squirrel may be sighted.

Overnight in Deniyaya.

Day 13: Deniyaya to Galle

Depart for Galle, where you may wish to extend your holiday on some of Sri Lanka's glorious beaches. 

Distance and journey time: 84 km, 2 hrs

 

 

Not quite right or still need some more inspiration? Please get in touch to customise your tour. We welcome your questions. We're here to help!

Highlights

Bundala National Park: Abundant birdlife

Fringed by a 20km strip of dunes, lagoons and waterways on the south coast between Kirinda and Hambantota, the national park is a stunning, wildlife-rich wetland open the year round.

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Galle: Interesting and Charming

Set within a chain of imposing, 17th Century bastions on Sri Lanka’s south western tip, Galle Fort, the city’s old Dutch quarter, is a wonderfully preserved, historically important UNESCO site l

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Kandy: Lake town and Temple of the Tooth

One of the most sacred of Buddhist places, and final capital of the Sinhalese kings, UNESCO listed Kandy is also one of Sri Lanka’s most beautiful cities.

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Polonnaruwa: Ancient City

Set in a magical forested park, and defended by a system of moats, the magnificent walled city dates from the 11th Century.

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Sigiriya: The Lion Rock

Set 200m above a forested plain, the UNESCO site, a monument to patricide and paranoia, represents an astonishing feat of engineering and construction dating 1500 years

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Sinharaja Rainforest

This breathtakingly beautiful UNESCO-listed jungle is a haven of wildlife, and the last remaining expanse of virgin rainforest in Sri Lanka.

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Udawalawe National Park: Elephant country

Located in the south of the country, with the massive Uda Walawe Reservoir at its centre, the lightly vegetated, savannah-like park is an ideal game-watching location.

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Wilpattu National Park

The park, one of Sri Lanka’s most environmentally important protected areas is formed of a unique ecosystem of interconnected lakes (villus) set amid grassy plains within a scrub jungle landscape, and supports a wide variety of native flora and fauna.

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Yala National Park: Leopard Country

Yala National Park, located in the south east of the country is remarkable for its variety of habitat, and unique eco-system regulated by the north-east monsoon.

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Accommodation

Dambulla, Superior Class
Amaya Lake

Proud of its eco-friendly credentials, set among lush tropical gardens the resort is designed to keep faith with traditional Sri Lankan culture and tradition, and looks out over the stunning tranquil beauty of Kandalama Lake.

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Galle, Luxury Boutique
The Fort Printers

Located within the 16th Century UNESCO World Heritage site of Galle Fort, The Fort Printers is a former mansion dating to the Dutch colonial period, its distinctive high ceilings and large windows being added during the British administration.

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Kandy, Boutique
The Kandy House

Set within lush, tropical gardens, the palatial ancestral villa, dating to 1804, and held at the time to be ‘an act of defiant decadence’ stands today a breath-taking fusion of 19th and 21st Century luxury and style.

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Sigiriya, Superior Class
Aliya Resort & Spa

This cool, modernist property adopts a sincere eco-friendly policy, and harmonises naturally and serenely with its lush, green setting

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Sinharaja, Deniyaya, Speciality Lodging
Rainforest Ecolodge

Located idyllically among the lush green terraces of the Enselwatte Tea Estate, the property is an oasis of calm set against the stunning backdrop of the Sinharaja Rainforest.

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Udawalawe, Superior Class
Grand Udawalawe Safari Resort

Enjoying an idyllic setting against a backdrop of lush green hills, the hotel is 5 minutes by road from the Uda Walawe National Park, and a short walk from the excellent Ath Athuru Sevana elephant orphanage.

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Yala National Park, Deluxe Class
Jetwing Yala

Located at the edge of the Yala National Park, the resort is set upon a pristine beach facing the glittering blue waters of the Indian Ocean.

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Yala National Park, Bespoke Tented Safaris
Leopard Trails

Located on the edge of Yala National Park, this luxury tented property offers western levels of comfort and convenience within an authentic game park environment.

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