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Updated by Joanna James on May 02, 2024
Headline for List of beautiful national parks in Sri Lanka- engage with nature and animals.
Joanna James Joanna James
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List of beautiful national parks in Sri Lanka- engage with nature and animals.

Sri Lanka is blessed with beautiful landscapes, rich dense vegetation and thriving ecosystems that home a diversity of flora and fauna. Take a look at some of the best and beautiful on the island.


Yala National Park

Located in the southeast of Sri Lanka, Yala is perhaps the most famous. Yala is known for its high density of leopards than any other national park. Other animals that live here include elephants, sloth bears, peacocks, water buffalos, and a range of endemic and migratory birds.
There are five sectors in the park, and two remain open to the public.



Wilpattu is located towards the north of the island and is 30 km away from the ancient city of Anuradhapura.
The park is well known for the many beautiful and naturally formed watering holes/lakes known as 'willus' scattered across its expanse. A large density of indigenous and migratory birds thrives among these wetland sites found within the park. One can expect to locate leopards, elephants, water buffalos, sloth bears, spotted deer, sambhur and many reptiles such as crocodiles, pythons and monitor lizards.


Udawalawe National Park

Udawalawe is famous for its elephants and lies on the border of the Sabaragamuwa and Uva provinces. The National Park has become a sanctuary for wild animals uprooted from their homesteads during the construction of the Udawalawe Reservoir. The Elephant Transit Home within the park premises cares for abandoned elephant calves before releasing them to the wild. Among other mammals that live here are the rare fishing cats, leopards, sloth bears, sambar deer, water buffalo, and wild boar. One can find many Dambulla hotels such as Amaya Lake in and around this area.


Horton Plains

Horton Plains is located 2000 meters above sea level and is the highest altitude national park in Sri Lanka. The scenery is phenomenal, especially in the early mornings with vast open plains of grassland, forests, waterfalls and mist-covered hills. The most famous trek is up to World's End, a sharp drop of over 4000 feet. Views of the Indian Ocean can be spotted on mist free days!


Sinharaja Forest Reserve

Sinharaja is the largest rainforest in Sri Lanka and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also the last primary rain forest on the island. Located in the southwest of Sri Lanka, the forest reserve is home to 50 % of all endemic species. Many mammals, reptiles, amphibians, butterflies and rare fauna found nowhere else in the world lives at Sinharaja.


Pigeon Island

Pigeon Island is a marine national park and an ideal place for scuba divers. Located on the east coast, 1 km off the Nilaveli Beach in Trincomalee. The two islands have thousands of rock pigeons living on them. Coral reefs are visible around the island, and diving is allowed. The best time to visit Pigeon Island is between April and September.


Gal Oya

Gal Oya is one of the less-visited parks located in the south of Sri Lanka. It is also one of the least disturbed and best-preserved because of its unpopularity. The main attraction would be the Gal Oya reservoir, known as the Senanayake Samudraya, a man-made water tank.
Visitors can take a boat ride and have picnics on the surrounding islands. Certain indigenous Vedda tribes live close to the park and hunt around this area.

  • A true believer that the pen is a mighty weapon, ventures into reaching the minds of every reader with the earnest hope of leaving an indelible stream of thought.

    A travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.

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