Safari in Sri Lanka - 9 days
Safari in Sri Lanka on this unique wildlife tour which takes in five of the beautiful Tear Drop Isle's best national parks - Wilapattu, Wasgamuwa, Gal Oya, Udawalawe and Yala. Go in search of herds of elephants, Sri Lankan Sloth Bears and elusive leopards, explore Dambulla's incredible cave temple, visit the Veddhas and more, in nine captivating days.
Colombo - Negombo. Welcome to Sri Lanka! Upon arrival at Colombo airport you will be met and transferred to our start hotel in Negombo. After you have checked in the remainder of the day is at your leisure. This evening meet your guide and the rest of the group for a tour briefing.
Negombo - Wilpattu. After breakfast we drive along Sri Lanka's picturesque coast to Wilpattu National Park. Located on the west coast of Sri Lanka, Wilpattu is Sri Lanka's largest national park, covering 1085 sq km and extending inland towards the ancient city of Anuradhapura. The lakes and dense woodland of Wilpattu are home to impressive variety of flora and fauna including sloth bears, spotted deer, wild pigs, crocodiles and leopards, Sri Lanka’s top feline predator. This afternoon we go in search of wildlife on our first game drive, in a jeep. This evening we enjoy a tasty BBQ dinner at the camp which is located close to the Southern boundary of Wilpattu National Park, on the boundary of a lake, surrounded by bush forest.
Overnight: Wilpattu (tented camp) | Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Wilpattu - Wasgamuwa. After breakfast we depart for Wasgamuwa, stopping en route to visit Sri Lanka’s most impressive cave temples, the Dambulla Rock Temple. This stunning complex of 5 caves contains over 150 images of Buddha including an impressive 14 metre statue carved out of the cave rock. We continue on to Wasgamuwa to check into our hotel before enjoying an afternoon game drive in Wasgamuwa National Park.
The evergreen forest of Wasgamuwa, with its towering trees, is home to large herds of elephants. On our game drive we may also spot wild boar, buffalo, purple faced langur monkeys, spotted deer and crocodiles basking in the sun. Not to mention up to 143 species of birds.
Overnight: Wasgamuwa | Breakfast, Dinner
Visit the Veddhas
Wasgamuwa - Gal Oya. Today we travel on to Gal Oya, stopping en route in Mahiyanganaya, where we get the opportunity to visit the forest dwelling Veddhas, an indigenous people of Sri Lanka. We continue on to our lodge in Gal Oya National Park where the rest of the day is free to spend at leisure.
Overnight: Gal Oya | Breakfast, Dinner
Gal Oya is one of the best preserved and least visited national parks in Sri Lanka. It was established in 1954, primarily to protect the catchment area of the vast Senanayake Samudra Reservoir, which is the largest inland body of water in Sri Lanka. Rich in bio diversity and aquatic life, Gal Oya spans 25,000 hectares of dense evergreen forest, mountains, savannah and lake.
This morning we rise early for breakfast before embarking on a boat safari, which is the best way to spot Gal Oya's diverse wildlife, and if we're really lucky we might see the Asian elephant swimming in its natural habitat. We return to the hotel for lunch and to freshen up before an afternoon jeep safari.
Overnight: Gal Oya | Breakfast, Dinner
Gal Oya - Udawalawe. This morning we travel on to Udawalawe and check into our hotel before an afternoon jeep safari in Udawalawe National Park. The park is known for its large population of elephants, there are over 400 and herds of up to 50 are commonly sighted. As well as elephants we'll be on the look out for leopards, togue monkeys, grey langur, wild pig and sambar. Numerous bird species can also be sighted including the white bellied sea eagle and crested serpent eagle.
Overnight: Udawalawe | Breakfast
Udawalawe - Yala. Bidding farewell to Gal Oya we make our way to Yala National Park today. Checking into our hotel late morning, we enjoy an afternoon jeep safari in the park. Yala is the second largest national park in Sri Lanka and it has the highest concentration of leopards on the island. The park is also home to a large population of Asian elephants, sloth bears, golden palm civets, Sri Lankan krait and crocodiles, while the coastline around the park is visited by leatherback and loggerhead sea turtles.
Overnight: Yala | Breakfast
Yala - Colombo. We travel back to Colombo today, stopping in Galle en route to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Galle fortress. The fortress was first constructed by the Portuguese in 1588, then expanded and extensively fortified by the Dutch during the 17th century. Arriving into Colombo late this afternoon we enjoy a short tour of the city and this evening we'll enjoy our last dinner together as a group.
Overnight: Colombo | Breakfast, Dinner
Our tour comes to an end after breakfast today, with a transfer to the airport for your onward flight.
Prices & Dates
Departure dates noted with a 'G' are guaranteed to operate. All other departure dates are guaranteed with a minimum of 2 persons. Prices shown are per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling, sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travellers who require their own room and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price.Read More
The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard when necessary.
Jetwing Blue Negombo, Negombo
The Jetwing Blue is stylish beach hotel with excellent facilities and contemporary comforts. Rooms are spacious and tastefully decorated, with private balconies all of the modern amenities you would expect from a 5 star hotel. It boasts two superb outdoor pools, a fully equipped gym and a spa, offering personalised treatments. The two restaurants serve a wonderful range of tasty cuisine and guests can opt to dine at the ocean’s edge while enjoying breathtaking views of the sea. The hotel is conveniently located on the beach front in Negombo, a popular coastal resort just north of Colombo and 20 minutes drive from the airport.
Big Game Camp, Wilpattu National Park
Big Game Camp is ideally located for game drives within Wilpattu National Park. Guests are comfortably accommodated in spacious tents, with en suite facilities, raised beds, fresh bed linen, towels, a fan and electricity. Guests can go in search of the park's resident wildlife by day and spend evenings beside a camp fire, dining on delicious cuisine, surrounded by nature.
FarCry Wasgamuwa, Wasgamuwa National Park
Set amidst the lush expanses of Wasgamuwa, between the majestic Knuckles mountain range and the Mahaweli River, FarCry is a haven for nature lovers, conveniently located 25km from Wasgamuwa National Park. This intimate lodge has 6 air-conditioned guest rooms, equipped with modern comforts. There's an outdoor pool, a restaurant, which serves a wonderful selection of local delights, and a bar offering a tasty selection of signature cocktails.
Gal Oya Lodge, Gal Oya National Park
This unique eco lodge is spread across 20 acres of private forest, with 10 spacious and beautifully designed bungalows. Each bungalow has a private living room, bedroom with kind sized bed, and en suite bathroom with indoor and outdoor showers. Spectacular floor to ceiling windows and doors open onto a private veranda, to bring guests closer to nature. The cuisine at the lodge is locally sourced and lovingly prepared, with a choice of delicious Sri Lankan and Western dishes, and the outdoor pool is perfect for a refreshing dip after an exhilarating boat safari or game drive.
Grand Udawalawe Safari Resort, Udawalawe National Park
Situated on 7 acres of land, the Grand Udawalawe Safari Resort is the only hotel of its class in the area. Rooms are spacious with beautiful hard wood flooring and artwork depicting the wildlife of Udawalawe. Food here is delicious and plentiful with an extensive breakfast menu. The outdoor pool is a great place to relax by and enjoy a refreshing splash in after a good day on safari. Well located just a few minutes drive from Udawalawe National Park.
Jetwing Yala, Yala National Park
Right next to Yala National Park, Jetwing Yala offers superb accommodation in a spectacular location. Guest rooms are beautifully decorated and all come with private balconies and contemporary en suites. The hotel also benefits from a stunning out door pool, a desirable beachside location and a number of excellent restaurants. Choose from elegant dining at the Dining Room or tapas at the Lounge. Perfectly located on the outskirts of Yala National Park.
Z Max Fairway Colombo, Colombo
Situated at the heart of Colombo, the Fairway Hotel is ideally located, close to the iconic World Trade Center and the popular Dutch Hospital complex. With 181 comfortable guest rooms, this modern hotel blends the latest technology with great design. Free high speed Wi-Fi access, motion sensor driven room temperature control, room access through your mobile phone are just a few of the technological conveniences offered. The hotel offers four restaurants, a nightclub, fitness centre and a fantastic rooftop terrace where guests can sip tasty cocktails and enjoy the superb city views.
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