Southern Province, Sri Lanka
Garden & Park Tours

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Our most recommended Southern Province, Sri Lanka Garden & Park Tours

Yala National Park: Private Safari at Golden Hours

1. Yala National Park: Private Safari at Golden Hours

After being picked up from your hotel in the local area, you will enter Yala National Park to explore the light forests, scrubs, grasslands, lagoons, and magnificent range of animals. With your private 4WD Jeep and expert guide, the ‘Golden Hours’ of the day will be used to focus on leopard spotting, either the first 2 hours or the last 2 hours of the day. Throughout this safari, you will search for the world’s most concentrated number of leopards, sloth bears, and elephants, as your knowledgable guide and driver expertly navigates the vast area and roads. The morning tour will begin at 5am from your hotel, to take in sunrise as the park opens at 6am. Whilst the afternoon option allows you to explore from 2pm until sunset when the park closes at 6pm. Situated on Sri Lanka’s south-east, hugging the panoramic Indian Ocean, Yala is a wildlife sanctuary and home to 44 varieties of mammals and 215 bird species. Leopards, elephants, water buffalo, sloth bears, sambars, jackals, spotted deer, peacocks, and crocodiles can all be found in this rich environment.

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Galle/Unawatuna/Mirissa: Full-Day Yala National Park Safari

2. Galle/Unawatuna/Mirissa: Full-Day Yala National Park Safari

Your experience begins with a pickup from your hotel in either the Galle, Unawatuna or Mirissa areas. From there, relax on your drive to Yala National Park. Upon arrival you'll go for a safari drive by Jeep, keeping an eye out for local leopards and elephants in their natural habitat. Other indigenous wildlife which are able to be spotted in this park includes sloth bears, jackals, mongoose, spotted deers, buffalo, wild boars, sambhur, and hare. Now the most-visited park in Sri Lanka, Yala is also an important nature reserve for 50 species of butterflies and many species of birds. After the safari, journey back to your point of origin to be dropped off back to your accommodation.

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All-Inclusive Afternoon Yala Safari with Beach BBQ Dinner

3. All-Inclusive Afternoon Yala Safari with Beach BBQ Dinner

Get picked up from your Tissamaharama, Yala, Kataragama or Hambantota hotel. Hop into the Safari Jeep and travel to Yala National Park for an exciting game drive. Yala Park is situated in Sri Lanka's dry zone, made up of scrub jungles, water reservoirs, brackish lagoons, and riverine habitats. It has the highest population density of leopards in the world, and is also home to a herd of 300-350 elephants. As well as leopards and elephants, keep an eye out for animals including sloth bears, black-naped hares, spotted deer, sambar, hanuman langurs, toque monkeys, stripe-necked and ruddy mongooses, wild boar, and golden jackal. You may also see the enormous land and water monitors and, of course, marsh crocodiles. You will be taken to a private beach where you have a couple of hours to explore, dip your toes in the cool water, and enjoy a 4-course barbeque dinner with a glass or two of wine. The beach is located in an exclusively private area and dinner is set up only for your group. The Jeep will take you back to your hotel.

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Yala National Park: Leopard Safari Full day tour with Lunch

4. Yala National Park: Leopard Safari Full day tour with Lunch

After being picked up from your hotel in the local area at around 5:00 AM, you will enter Yala National Park to explore the light forests, scrubs, grasslands, lagoons, and magnificent range of animals. Over nearly 400 square miles, the park consistently wows visitors, with its range of lagoons, riparian zones, monsoon jungles, and more, supporting a veritable arc of fauna. As you traverse the park, get the best view of it all from a modified game viewing safari Jeep. After exploring the vast park for a few hours at the helm of your knowledgeable guide, you’ll stop for a picnic lunch at a beautiful viewing spot. Unwind for a while after lunch and get ready to enjoy your second round of the game drive.  As you criss-cross through the stunning landscape, you have the opportunity to see elephants, sloth bears, toque monkeys, wild boar, water monitors, marsh crocodiles, and perhaps the crown jewel of Yala National Park, the spotted leopard—of which the park has one of the highest densities in the world. After your full day of safari exploration, you’ll be transported back to your accommodation, thrilled at the preserved piece of nature that you have experienced.

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Tangalle: Yala National Park Wildlife Safari

5. Tangalle: Yala National Park Wildlife Safari

The tour starts with pickup from your accommodation in Tangalle, then the adventure begins as you head out to Ruhunu Yala National Park to explore its 126,786 hectares. Yala is famous for its big herds and large number of elephants, leopards, spotted deer, sambhur, crocodiles, mongoose, wild boar, wild buffalo, along with many other animals. In addition, more than 130 bird species are recorded to live here, including the resident and winter visitors. Throughout the safari, search for the world’s most concentrated number of leopards, sloth bears, and elephants, as your knowledgeable guide and driver expertly navigates the vast area and roads. Learn about the animals that live here and the work that is done to preserve this natural habitat. Admire the stunning scenery of the park, which sits alongside the Indian Ocean and is a rich haven for over 250 varieties of animals and birds. This is an unforgettable adventure that will leave you with a lifetime of memories.

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Mirissa or Galle: Transfer to Ella with Udawalawe Safari

6. Mirissa or Galle: Transfer to Ella with Udawalawe Safari

Enjoy a morning pick-up from your hotel in Mirissa or Galle and head for Udawalawe National Park, where you'll switch to an open-topped safari jeep to get the best views. See the animals early in the day at their most active. Pass by herds of elephants and watch for crocodiles, monkeys, water buffalo, a large variety of bird species, and more. Snap some great photos and learn about the wildlife. Sit down to a picnic breakfast later in the morning and then switch back to an air-conditioned car for the ride on to Ella where you'll be dropped off at your hotel.

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From Ella: Shuttle to Mirissa/Galle with Udawalawe Safari

7. From Ella: Shuttle to Mirissa/Galle with Udawalawe Safari

After 5:00 AM pick-up from your hotel in Ella, Haputale or Bandarawela, head for Udawalawe National Park, where you'll switch to an open concept safari jeep in order to have the best views. An early morning start ensures you'll see the animals during one of their most active times of day. See herds of elephants for sure and have fun watching for crocodiles, monkeys, water buffaloes, various endemic birds species and much more. Along the way, you'll learn about and observe the natural habitats of the local wildlife while you snap some amazing photos. Later in the morning, enjoy a picnic breakfast. Then, at the end of your 3-hour safari adventure, switch back to the comfortable, air-conditioned car for the ride on to Mirissa where you'll be dropped off at your hotel.

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Luxury Camping and Safari Experience in Yala Park

8. Luxury Camping and Safari Experience in Yala Park

Embark on a glamping adventure at the 2nd largest national park in Sri Lanka, Yala. Upon arrival at Tissamarama, check into your luxurious campsite and get acquainted with the onsite amenities. Spend some free time relaxing and enjoy a delicious lunch at the campsite’s main restaurant or at one of the many outdoor locations. After your lunch it’s time to head out into the wilderness and immerse yourself in the fascinating natural landscape of Sri Lanka. On the game drive, look out for leopards and elephants in their natural environment and learn about these animals from your experienced guide. After your safari, head back to the campsite to freshen up before drinks and appetizers around the campfire. Dine on a BBQ dinner and mingle with the other guests as you talk about the wonders of the safari. Wake up early on the second day to freshly brewed local tea or coffee, then head out for another game drive to search for animals at their most active part of the day. After the drive, enjoy a tasty breakfast of freshly squeezed juices and seasonal fruit before check out at 11am and the return journey back.

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From Galle or Mirissa: Yala Safari with Lunch at Campsite

9. From Galle or Mirissa: Yala Safari with Lunch at Campsite

Get a great start to your day, with this tour collecting you from your hotel at 5:00 AM. Where you will then drive to the Yala National Park. Once at the park, hop into a Safari Jeep, for your exciting game drive.  Yala Park is situated in Sri Lanka's dry zone, made up of scrub jungles, water reservoirs, brackish lagoons, and riverine habitats. This diversity of landscapes makes it an ideal place for so many animals to live. This park has the highest population of leopards in one place in the world. No doubt you will see some elephants, with a herd of 300-350 wondering about the lands.  Enjoy at 12:00 PM, a 4 course lunch at Leopard Nest Campsite. Relax and compliment lunch with a beer. The tour will conclude after lunch, and begin heading back to your hotel, where you will arrive back at approximately 6:30 PM. 

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From Negombo: Bentota Full-Day Tour

10. From Negombo: Bentota Full-Day Tour

Begin your day at 8:00 AM at Madu River in Balapitiya for a boat safari. For one-hour, journey through the primitive depths of the mangrove marshes. Traverse the dark and dangerous caverns, formed by the thick mangrove forests, interspersed with stretches of bright open water.  The next destination is the Kothduwa Temple. This Buddhist temple is located on the island and is known as the Kothduwa Raja Maha Viharaya. The island is within the Madu Ganga Estuary. Madu Ganga is an archipelago of fifteen different islands and a lagoon. It is believed that a Relic of Lord Buddha was once sheltered in the Kothduwa temple circa 340CE.  Enjoy lunch then visit the Lunuganga Garden. Geoffrey Bawa was one of Asia's finest architects. He passed away in 2003. Lunuganga was Bawa’s country home. It sits in an enchanting atmosphere with glorious views. It is now managed by the Lunuganga Trust. Admire the home’s features and blissfulness. It is now run as a country hotel and the proceeds go to Colombo.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Southern Province, Sri Lanka

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What people are saying about Southern Province, Sri Lanka

We start at dawn and experience the awakening of nature. In the morning we saw single animals, apart from the elephants who were in a group, with two cubs. The landscape is very beautiful, all the various types of birds are fascinating. The courses have holes, but the cars used are suitable, the experienced and capable drivers warn each other as soon as one of them spots some animals or groups. Very difficult to see the leopard. Nice experience, also valid for those who want to take pictures. Excellent lunch, typical and genuine.

Sasangan was an excellent driver and guide through our safari in Yala National Park. He perfectly navigated some flooded and bumpy roads allowing us the smoothest ride possible. He was also excellent at spotting the animals, pointing them out to us, and telling us about them a bit. He even spotted a leopard for us and we were the first jeep that day to spot it! It was very exciting!

Booking process was very easy. We were picked up exactly on time and were the first at the gate when Yala opened. Our guide Yasanka asked what we were most interested in and made that the priority for the morning. We saw the leopard, elephants, black bear and crocodile along with water buffaloes and deer. Amazing.

Amazing trip! Brilliant English speaking guide that ensured I saw all the animals and easy transfers picked up directly from your hotel. Would definitely recommend to anyone wanting a brilliant day out.

The experience was great our driver was helpful and worked hard to show us the animals there. We were able to spot black bear, elephants, leopards, and lots of birds.