Discover the remarkable natural diversity of Sri Lanka, from the birds and reptiles in the rainforests to large mammals in the national parks and the abundant marine life in the waters off the south coast. Starting from the Waikkal biosphere, renowned for its endemic birds, this tour visits the Udawalawe and Yala National Parks in search of wild elephants and leopards. Continue to the west of the island to look for blue whales and sperm whales off the coast of Galle and see turtles hatch in Kosgoda, before returning to Colombo.
Day 1 Colombo, Waikkal
Greeted on arrival at Bandaranaike International Airport, and transferred to your hotel in Waikkal, an hour’s drive away. Stay overnight at Suriya Resort or similar. Late afternoon, enjoy a boat ride on Negombo lagoon to observe the bird life. A welcome dinner is arranged this evening.
Day 2 Waikkal, Udawalawe
Drive to Udawalawe National Park in the morning, visiting en route an elephant shelter. Stay for two nights at Grand Udawalawe or similar.
Day 3 Udawalawe
Enjoy morning and afternoon safaris in the park. Udawalawe National Park is a wonderful place to see wild Asian elephants in their natural habitat. The park is home to approximately five hundred elephants. Other wildlife includes sambar deer, water buffalo, jackals and monkeys including the grey langur and the endemic toque macaque. A total of 183 species of birds have been recorded here, some of which are resident and the others, migrant. The endemic Sri Lanka jungle fowl, brown-capped babbler, malabar pied hornbill and the Sri Lanka spurfowl are all excellent sightings for birdwatchers. Of the water birds, the rare osprey and Indian cormorant are also of note.
Day 4 Udawalawe, Yala
After a leisurely breakfast, we drive for about two hours to arrive at Yala National Park. Stay for two nights at Laya Safari or similar
Day 5 Yala
Enjoy morning and afternoon safaris in Yala Park. One of Sri Lanka’s oldest and largest national parks, Yala covers an area of 1500 sq km and has one of the highest densities of leopards in the World. The park is home to variety of wildlife including spotted deer, crocodiles, wild boar, wild buffaloes, langurs, peacocks and over 200 species of birds.
Day 6 Yala, Galle
Drive to Weligama in the morning to see stilt fishing, a tradition unique to Sri Lanka. Later drive on to Galle. Stay for two nights at Amari Galle.
Day 7 Galle
Today we have an option to visit Mirissa for a whale watching expedition (November to April) or cycling tour through Eluvila bird sanctuary. In the afternoon visit a turtle hatchery at Kosgoda. In the evening enjoy a walk through Galle city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to visit Galle Fort, Maritime Museum, the old Church, the Sun and the Moon bastions and the lighthouse.
Day 8 Galle, Colombo
Today we drive to Colombo airport in the morning to board our return flight home.
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