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North Central Province

Birdwatching

Our most recommended North Central Province Birdwatching

Wilpattu National Park: 3-Hour Morning or Evening Safari

1. Wilpattu National Park: 3-Hour Morning or Evening Safari

Go on a thrilling 3-hour morning or evening safari adventure in Wilpattu National Park, the largest national park in Sri Lanka. Capture unforgettable sights of a diverse range of flora and fauna, and an outstanding array of wildlife that charms travelers from all around the world.  Explore the stunning scenery and incredibly abundant wildlife overlooking the dazzling dry tropical rainforest and the silver-blue small water pools. Take in the sights of mighty elephants as well as views of spotted deer, barking deer, jackals, sambhar, wild pig, and water buffalo. Apart from the mammals, your safari can guarantee you ample opportunity for spotting incredibly beautiful swamps of butterflies saturated with vivid colors including great egg fly, great orange tip, glad-eye bushbrown, blue Mormon, common Mormon, crimson rose, and more. Thanks to the stunning coastal belt, shallow lakes, dense scrublands, treeless grasslands, and thick forests, catch a variety of wildlife during your safari experience. The small water bodies scattered around the park are a prominent feature that enhances the photographic character of the park, while also attracting a variety of aquatic birds and reptiles.

Minneriya: Minneriya National Park Private Safari

2. Minneriya: Minneriya National Park Private Safari

With the grace of majestic giants and pristine tropical dry forest settings, Minneriya National Park is a perfect spot to spend a few hours witnessing one of the most astonishing wildlife spectacles on earth.  Renowned as a prominent stopover for wandering elephants searching for food during the August and September the dry season, Minneriya National Park attracts up to 300 giants from the neighboring national parks. Enjoy the flicker of monkeys swinging through the branches and search the forest for the sight of majestic elephants, leopards, sloth bears, mongooses, spotted deer, sambar deer, wild buffalo, porcupine and Indian pangolins. Do not miss out on this quintessential safari destination in a strikingly beautiful forest.

Hurulu Eco Park: 3-Hour Morning or Evening Safari

3. Hurulu Eco Park: 3-Hour Morning or Evening Safari

Sneak along the narrow tracks of Hurulu Eco Park on a 3-hour morning or evening jeep safari searching for the best sights of majestic elephants and leopards. Overlooking the dense shrublands and forests, this is the ideal place for spotting wild animals in their natural habitat.  Each year during the months of July to September large groups of elephants are found in the Minneriya National Park. They then migrate to Kaudulla National Park during the months October to November due to high rains and lakes filling up. The elephants then move on to Hurulu Eco Park for the final leg of their migration during the months of December and January. Playing a dominant role in the park’s wildlife, see the majestic Sri Lankan elephants — a very common sighting that safari-goers never tire off. The Hurulu Eco Park assures you a feast of sightings of leopards, rusty-spotted cats, star tortoise, jungles fowl, parrots, and hawks. Explore the land of 10,000 hectares of mysterious wilderness that plays a precious role in the dry ecosystem in Sri Lanka, supporting the wildlife as an evergreen forest. Look for the phenomenal wildlife sightings around the scenic Hurulu Wewa reservoir, right in the heart of the park.

Kaudulla National Park: Private Safari

4. Kaudulla National Park: Private Safari

Witness Sri Lankan wildlife up close on this three-hour safari through Kaudulla National Park. Located near the city of Galoya, this park provides ample opportunities to spot majestic elephants and other animals in their natural habitat.   Pass by the reservoir, the lifeblood of the park, which attracts herds of elephants from nearby parks. In addition to elephants, you’ll get the chance to see Sambar deer, Axis deer, chevrotains, wild boar, Asian spoonbills, painted storks, and more. You may even be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of leopards or sloth bears in the forest.   As you drive along, admire the green line of trees in the distance, the blue sky, and emerald green grasslands. Breathe in the fresh air and cross an amazing safari off your bucket list.

From Habarana: Minneriya National Park Safari

5. From Habarana: Minneriya National Park Safari

Explore pristine tropical dry forest settings on a safari through Minneriya National Park. See wandering elephants, spot swinging monkeys, and enjoy a view of the Minneriya reservoir. Meet your driver at your hotel and head to the Minneriya National Park. As you drive through the grassland, keep an eye out for the giant elephants who have wandered over in search of food from neighboring national parks. Enter the forest, and enjoy the flicker of monkeys swinging through branches. Search the woods for an astonishing array of wildlife, including elephants, leopards, sloth bears, mongooses, spotted deer, sambar deer, wild buffalo, porcupine, and Indian pangolins. Stop for a stunning view of the Minneriya reservoir before returning to your hotel.

Sri Lanka: Western Province Highlights Day Tour and Safari

6. Sri Lanka: Western Province Highlights Day Tour and Safari

The tour lasts about 12 hours, a large part of which is dedicated to sightseeing at Sigiriya, Dambulla and Minneriya. This is a perfect opportunity to encounter Sri Lanka's fascinating wildlife while visiting the most most popular historical monuments in the cultural triangle of Sri Lanka. This private tour with a car or van start in the western province (Colombo, Negombo, Kalutara, Bentota) and takes you through the picturesque countryside amidst patches of forests, rice paddies and laid-back villages to the cultural triangle. During the day you will be visiting Sigiriya rock fortress, Dambulla golden temple and Minneriya national park. This is one of the very rare opportunity for travelers to many important tourist attractions within a few hours time. Our guide/driver will be assisting with tickets, provides you with information. The tour is private, it means it can be done at your own pace. Our luxury air-conditioned vehicle provides you a very comfortable and safe journey. The tour can be customized to meet your specific requirement, please inquire.

From Negombo: Anuradhapura to Wilpattu National Park 2-Day

7. From Negombo: Anuradhapura to Wilpattu National Park 2-Day

Visit the ancient city of Anuradhapura, explore its ruins, and visit the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi. Stay overnight at a 3-star Hotel on a Bed and Breakfast basis. Then, discover the unique landscape of the Wilpattu National Park as you look out for its resident leopards and other wildlife on an adventurous game drive. After a pickup from your hotel in Negombo and a 4-hour transfer onboard a luxury vehicle, arrive in Anuradhapura. Visit the oldest historically documented tree on earth, The Sacred Bo tree over 2000 years old, grown from a branch of the very tree under which the Buddha attained enlightenment. Admire the relic chambers like Ruwanveliseya, Abhayagiriya, and Jetavanaramaya. Visit the remains of the Brazen Palace, The Twin Ponds, and the Samadhi Buddha. See the Isurumuniya temple, The Moonstone, The Guard stones, or Thuparama and Lankaramaya Dagobas. The following morning, drive to Wilpattu National Park for a thrilling Game drive. Uncover huge swathes of dense, dry country woodland. See a variety of birds, and with a bit of luck, an impressive array of wildlife including leopards, sloth bears, spotted deer, wild pigs, and crocodiles. Conclude your trip with a transfer back to Negombo.

From Kandy: All-Inclusive 2 Nights Guided Tour of Sri Lanka

8. From Kandy: All-Inclusive 2 Nights Guided Tour of Sri Lanka

Day 1 Kandy / Mahiyanganaya 6 AM: Leave Kandy and proceed with your driver for two hours to reach Mahiyanganaya. 8:30 AM: Arrive at Mahiyanaya and start trekking with a local guide to explore the hidden waterfalls. Pass by countryside attractions including paddy fields and canals. Enjoy the sounds of the waterfalls and the songs of the birds. Visit two beautiful hidden waterfalls and explore the surrounding nature's flora and fauna. 12:30 PM: Be driven to your hotel in Mahiyanganaya. 2 PM: Arrive at a four-star luxury hotel and spend some time at your leisure. 3:30 PM: Leave to visit the Wedda village of Dambana. Learn more about the fascinating lifestyle of forest dwellers and how they have adapted to the changing times. 6 PM: Arrive back at the hotel and enjoy the hotel facilities including dinner with wine and beer. Stay overnight at Keven’s Casa hotel Mahiyanganaya. Day 2 Mahiyanganaya / Your next Destination 5:30 AM: Leave the hotel to witness the dawn of a new day, as the sun rises over the horizon of the beautiful Sorabora Lake. Listen to the birds chirping away as you breathe in the fresh morning air and enjoy the true beauty of nature. 6 AM: Do a scenic, hour-long boat tour across the 1440-acre body of water in Sorabora Lake and enjoy the breathtakingly beautiful views of the blue waters. If lucky, catch the moment when a diving bird plunges into the water for a fishy snack. Watch as the local fishermen use a traditional form of fishing to enclose the fish and bring it ashore. 7:30 AM: Enjoy breakfast with a view. Head over to the top of the Sorabora Rock where your chef will await your arrival to cook up a freshly prepared, delicious breakfast. 8:30 AM: Try your hand at milking the friendly yet mischievous cows in Mahiyangana. Learn about the procedure from a local villager and get hands-on experience milking a cow. 9:30 AM: Enjoy swinging at the edge of the lake or try mountain biking to explore more of the surroundings. 11 AM: Check out from the hotel and proceed to your next destination (Transportation will be provided to Ella, Yala, Pasikuda, Polonnaruwa, Habarana, Dambulla, Sigiriya, Kandy, and Nuwara Eliya free of charge)

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Frequently asked questions about North Central Province Birdwatching

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Other Sightseeing Options in North Central Province

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What people are saying about North Central Province

Enjoyed the safari and managed to see elephants close up - there were over 50! A couple of the elephants charged at the numerous jeeps when they got too close, but the jeep guides seemed able to anticipate this and made a quick getaway! We also saw a hornets nest, monkeys, a giant squirrel, crocodile, eagle, so the trip very worthwhile to see the animals in their natural environment.

We attended the afternoon safari and had the most amazing time. We were fortunate enough to see over 120 elephants, including lots of babies at the watering hole. Jeeps were fantastic for viewing.

saw sooooo many elephants!!! worth every penny! memories for a lifetime