Diverse Wildlife

Gal Oya National Park is known for its resident elephant herds, flourishing birdlife and 32 species of mammal including langurs, toque macaques, leopards, sloth bears, wild boar, water buffalo and deer.
This is the only park in Sri Lanka where you can take a boat trip to watch the wildlife. A unique opportunity to observe the local wildlife from the stunning Gal Oya Lake: including crocodiles, deer, elephants and many rare and endemic species of birds. This experience is the only one in Sri Lanka that enables you to spot wildlife from the water and to truly immerse yourself in the animals’ habitats. You may be lucky enough to see the elephants swimming between islands or bathing at the lake’s edge.
Gal Oya National Park lies south-east of Kandy in the eastern district. The park was closed during the war for three decades. This park was established to protect the catchments area of the Senanayake Samudraya (lake). This wildlife richness of this wetland is a natural habitat for a wide range of fauna and flora consisting of dry mixed vegetation including savannah grass and an extensive green cover. About 45% of the vegetation is evergreen forest, 33% savanna, 9% grassland, 2% cheina cultivations and the balance is water bodies dominated by Senanayake Samudraya. The park hosts medicinal shrubs and trees, while a number of locally known trees such as Vevarana, Halmilla, Veera, Palu, Ebony and Mahogany are found in great numbers. The park with its thick green canopy is a haven for birds and nearer to the Samudraya even migratory birds such as Painted Storks, Pelicans, Cormorants and Teals can be seen. A host of local birds such as the Grey Dove, Malabar Horn Bill and Grey Horn Bill, Koel and a number of water birds are found in this jungle habitat. January to May is the green season, with the chance of afternoon and night time showers. The lake is at its fullest and there is amazing birdlife as all the migratory species are in residence. You can also see stunning early morning views of cloud engulfed mountains. June-December is the dry season, as the year goes on the lake subsides and exposes the lake floor where fresh grass grows and attracts large herds of elephant. During this time the days are hot and the nights are cool.

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Get in touch with us and one of our travel specialists will be able to talk you through our process and your options. Begin your journey today.

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Aleem Raheem

Specialist To: Sri Lanka Madagascar Maldives Seychelles Mauritius

Our specialists have unrivalled experience of the Indian Ocean, allowing them to craft you a truly memorable bespoke holiday.

020 8935 5685

Izabela Fronczyk

Specialist To: Sri Lanka Madagascar Maldives Seychelles Mauritius

Our specialists have unrivalled experience of the Indian Ocean, allowing them to craft you a truly memorable bespoke holiday.

020 8935 5685