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Wild side of Sri Lanka

Gathering of Asian elephants, meeting of Sri Lanka’s Aborigines - A unique experience in the wild

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Wild side of Sri Lanka : Overview

The Great Elephant Gathering Safari is a seasonal safari which takes you to see the biggest gathering of Asian elephants in the world. Watching “The Gathering” is an outstanding spectacle and take place in the dry season from July to October with its peak in August and September. 

Enjoy seeing the gentle giants of the animal kingdom. Meet the Sri Lanka’s Aborigines’, or the Veddha’s meaning “people of the forest”. Watch the sanctuary for migrant birds …

Enjoy a journey through the wild side of Sri Lanka.

Tour Duration – 10 Nights 11 Days

Day 01

COLOMBO AIRPORT – NEGOMBO

On arrival at Colombo International Airport, you will be met by our representative and will be transferred to a hotel in Negombo –  a fishing town just under 30 minute drive from the Airport.

Enjoy the comforts of your hotel and the surroundings to overcome the jetlag after a long flight.

(Option: Based on your arrival time we could avoid the Day 01 and commence the Day 02 program directly.)

Overnight stay in Negombo.

Day 02

PINNAWALA ELEPHANT ORPHANAGE

Departure Colombo around 07:30am to Sigiriya/Dambulla the cultural centre of Sri Lanka.

En-route visit the PINNAWELLA ELEPHANT ORPHANAGE to see baby jumbos wondering around their foster home. A place you will really enjoy and never forget.

Afterwards proceed to Sigiriya via Dambulla visiting the DAMBULLA CAVE TEMPLE. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is the largest and best-preserved cave temple complex in Sri Lanka and is adorned with paintings and sculptures.

Overnight stay in Dambulla/Sigiriya.

Day 03

WITNESS THE ELEPHANT GATHERING

After an early lunch drive to Minneriya National Park to be at the gate around 14:30Hrs to catch a glimpse of the majestic Sri Lankan elephant herds, which gather around the Minneriya Tank.

 

A famous annual occurrence at the tank is the gathering of 300 elephants, which is the world’s largest convocation of animals recorded in the wild, informally known as ‘The Minneriya Gathering’. Enjoy the sights and sound of these huge animal’s drink, play and snack on the green. (July to September would be the best time to watch the gathering.) 

 

At 18:00 Hrs: Transfer back to your hotel.

 

Overnight stay in Dambulla/Sigiriya.

Day 04

WASGAMUWA NATIONAL PARK

Travel from Minneriya to the Wasgamuwa National Park, one of the four parks bordering the Mahaweli River.

In this part of the jungle, you would find a large number of elephants gathered together, sometimes almost up to a hundred!

The best time to enjoy the sight of large herds is during November to May. In the rest of the year the elephants tend to migrate to nearby Minneriya and Kaudulla National Parks. Other wildlife includes Purple faced langur monkeys, wild boar, sambar and spotted deer, buffalo and rarely sighted leopards and sloth bears.

Overnight stay in Wasgamuwa.

Day 05

MEET THE VEDDAS - INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

After breakfast visit the Dambana Vedda Village and meet the ‘Veddas’- indigenous people of Sri Lanka.

 

Meet this forest dwelling people who endeavor to maintain their distinctive cultural identity and traditional lifestyles by living in mud huts, speaking their own distinctive Vedda language and engaging in some remarkable rituals and customs.

 

Climb the Kuda Sigiriya (little Sigiriya) rock and enjoy a view of lush green agricultural cultivation. Have lunch by the Mahaweli river and spend the rest of the day relaxing in serenity.

 

Overnight stay in Waskaduwa.

Day 06

GAL OYA NATIONAL PARK

Travel from Wasgamuwa to Gal Oya, another one of Sri Lanka’s remote and least visited wilderness areas holding many wild animals ranging from, buffalos, samba deer’s, endangered birds, herds of elephants, crocodiles and many more.

Afternoon boat safari in Gal Oya National Park to see swimming Elephants. Gal Oya National Park is the only National Park in Sri Lanka where one could go safari in a boat.

Overnight stay in Gal Oya Lodge.

Day 07

KUMANA BIRD'S SANTUARY

Travel from Gal Oya to Kumana – a jungle known to having a wide array of migratory birds that surround the many lagoons and tanks bordering the National Park.

 

Spend two days camping inside the National Park itself and enjoy the ultimate experience of going on safari and relaxing in the wilderness.

 

Overnight stay in Mirissa.

Day 08

BIRD WATCHING

Keep exploring….

Kumana National Park is covering an extent of 18,200 hectares and it claims wildlife consisting of leopards, elephants, bears and birds amongst the thousands of flora and fauna species which convert this park into an intricate ecosystem.

Overnight stay in Mirissa.

Day 09

KIRINDA – PEACE IN THE JUNGLE

Travel from Kumana to Yala/Tissamaharama.

 

Travel from Kumana to Yala/Tissamaharama.

 

On arrival checked in to your hotel.

 

Afternoon visit the Kirinda Temple, a 2nd century monastery atop a rocky outcrop in the Yala National Park. This is the place as per the Sri Lankan history where Queen Viharamahadevi landed. She was the daughter of King Kelanitissa who ruled the kingdom of Kelaniya (307 BC to 267 BC).

 

Overnight stay in Yala/Tissamaharama

Day 10

SAFARY AT YALA NATIONAL PARK

Visit the YALA NATIONAL PARK. You will get picked up early morning around 5.30 am to be at the entrance to the park at 6 am. If not, you may not be able to sight the animals.

Yala National Park is the most visited wildlife preserve in Sri Lanka.  Located in the southern part of the country, it is home to more than 40 varieties of mammals, and more than 200 bird species. Everything from wild boars to elephants, big cats to sloth bears and even bigger lizards – crocodiles make Yala National Park their home

Afterwards around 10:30hrs you will be back at your hotel. 

Overnight in Yala/Tissamaharama

Day 11

DEPARTURE SRI LANKA

After breakfast relax and enjoy the comforts of the hotel.

 

Your guide will meet you on time at the lobby to drive you to the Colombo International Airport for your departing flight home.

 

Take back with you 11 days of unforgettable memories and loads of pictures to remember your visit to Sri Lanka.

 

End of a journey through the wild side in Sri Lanka.

Tour Includes

Hotel Accommodation with breakfast

Transport

A licensed guide

Tour Excludes

Domestic & international flights

Entry cost to places of Interest

Meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary

Early check-in and late check-out at hotels.

Personal expenses (such as laundry, telephone, drinks, etc.)

Tips for guides and drivers

Personal travel insurance

Visa fees (contact us for further information)

Interested in our tour 'Wild side of Sri Lanka'?

Witness the gathering of Asian elephants, meet Sri Lanka’s Aborigines - A unique experience in the wild.