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Updated by Joanna James on Apr 05, 2021
Headline for Sri Lanka's best 5 wildlife national parks – ready for an island adventure in the jungles?
Joanna James Joanna James
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Sri Lanka's best 5 wildlife national parks – ready for an island adventure in the jungles?

Sri Lanka is known as paradise on earth and the wildlife on the island contributes to this. Explore several national parks to see the animals in their natural habitat.


Yala National Park

Known to be home to the most thriving population of leopards, the Yala National Park is undoubtedly the best place to visit if you wish to see the big games. Known to be one of the best locations for mammals in Asia, the Yala National Park is a location that can be visited throughout the year. If you are fortunate you will not only be able to see a sleeping leopard but also one that is roaming about ready to hunt. Apart from the elephants and leopards, you can also see deer, wild boar, sloth bears, buffalo, monkeys, and several other animals.


Udawalawe National Park

Udawalawe National Park is where you should head if you love seeing elephants. There are about 500 of these gentle giants who call the Udawalawe National Park their home. The forests and the scrubs alongside the waterholes are what attracted the elephants and now they are here to stay. If you are fortunate you will be able to see a variety of eagles at the Udawalawe National park which may include Serpent Eagle, Changeable Hawk Eagle, and the Grey-headed Fish Eagle.


Wasgamuwa National Park

If you love elephants this is another National Park you can visit too. The Wasgamuwa National park is home to about 150 elephants who live in peace and harmony except for a few occasions where there have been instances of photographers capturing attacks among elephants. Wasgamuwa is located in the drylands in the islands which is on the North Central Province and if you like exploring you can also make a visit to Dambulla while you are in the vicinity.


Sinharaja Rain Forest

Sinharaja Forest Reserve is a protected sight on the island and there are so many different types of birds you can see if you opt to take a hike in the reserve. If you suggest to your tour guide that you are interested in a Sri Lanka Safari then you will likely be taken to Sinharaja as this is a wonderful location to explore. Flocks of birds in different colours and sizes are always flying about making it an active location day and night. Being the premier rainforest on the island there are several restrictions when it comes to entering Sinharaja so it is best to contact a tour guide or travel agent such as Walkers Tours who can handle the nitty-gritty for you.


Minneriya and Kaudulla National Park

The two parks are located only half an hour away from each other and are perfect for a full-day trip. You will get to see large groups of elephants if you go during the rainy season along with cute baby elephants that will be following their mothers. The best time to visit Minneriya and Kaudulla national parks is during September and October, where around 300 elephants tend to roam around. The two parks are located in the North Central Province and are located next to a large reservoir.

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