Uda Walawe National Park

Uda Walawe National Park

Check Uda Walawe National Park on the Sri Lanka map


UDAWALAWE NATIONAL PARK is located approximately 200 km south-east of Colombo city and is a major eco tourism destination in Sri Lanka . The 30,821 hectares dry zone game park has an annual rainfall of 1524 mm and an average temperature of 29.4°C.

It is most famous for the many elephants that live there (about 400 in total). During a visit, it is not unusual to see whole herds of adults and young elephants– feeding or bathing and playing in the water! In addition to this main attraction, the park is home to many water buffalo, water monitor lizards, sambar deer, monkeys and the occasional leopard, as well as being an exciting location for bird enthusiasts.

A 4WD open-top safari is the only way to see all the wonders that this protected reserve has to offer and our experienced and knowledgeable nature guides will make this an unforgettable experience



This park is very famous for the Elephants. There are herds of elephant feeding in the grasslands. The Sambar deer , Spotted deer , Muntjac , wild boar  and water buffalo  are re-establishing themselves. Other mammals include: toque macaque  endemic, common langur , jackal , toddy cat, leopard  and black- napped hare and small Indian civet cat , endemic golden palm civet cat , three species of mongoose, an endemic shrew , gerbil , rat , Indian bush rat and the endemic

The avifauna includes large numbers of warblers , together with the usual lowcountry birds in forested areas, and a veriety of reptors. Water birds foun on the reservoir include rare visitors such as Indian cormorant and osprey. Notable endemic species are Sri Lanka spurfowl , Sri Lanka junglefowl, Malabar pied hornbill, endemic gray horonbill and brown- capped babbler


Recommended review time for sightseeing: 4 h

Tourist reviews about Uda Walawe National Park

Beyond incredible!
Terry D [TA], , Los Angeles, California

I've always been fascinated with elephants, so this was my first trip to actually see them outside of a zoo setting, And Udawalawe didn't disappoint.

I had a great tracker that my guide, Dhammika Perera, found for me. Lionel knew everything about every animal and bird we saw that day, which was a lot!

The safari lasted for about four hours. The reserve is huge. I saw many elephant families, solo males, and it was amazing to watch them go about their business, completely ignoring us in the jeep.

This was one of the most exciting adventures of my life.

Amazing experiance in my life
Happycust... [TA], , Wexford, Ireland

we went there as a big group of 20 people( some of them are Europeans and Sri lankans) reach there lunch time, and had lunch at" Bath Kade", very resonable and tasty rice and curry. Looking for a place to stay in the night, there is good place we found through a man call " Priyantha" , he has a Three Saffari Jeeps, call "Crocodile saffari", he mad our life is very easy and helping us every way he can, the place we stay was clean and relaxing place, care taker call" Ananda", he cooks very good food and keep the place neet and tidy, next morning crocodile saffari bring us to see Elephants and crocodiles, it was unreal experiance so many elephants so close to our jeeps, every one had a very good time, guids are very helpful and explain every thing

Loved the elephants
Nicole L [TA], , Perth, Australia

Udawalawe National Park was fabulous. It's lush and green and not overcrowded and you get so close to the animals. Being metres from elephants and watching them is amazing, but then there are crocs, a mongoose, birdlife, deer etc all AMAZING. The safari was my favourite part of Sri Lanka. Don't miss it, especially in the off season

Shehan86 [TA], , Milan, Italy

It's a very interesting place to visit.we saw lots of elephant and other animals,love the place so much,must visit place if you're in Sri Lanka

Elephants in plenty
sthlincsm... [TA], , Lincolnshire

We spent a rewarding half day at this convenient but not overly busy national park. Spotted numerous elephants, water buffalo, several varieties of stork, monkeys, various birds including beefeaters , rollers, peafowl as well as a mongoose and crocodiles amongst other things. Very enthusiastic guide and driver.

seapink12 [TA], ,

A beautiful setting with mountain backdrop and tress everywhere and we were lucky enough to see several elephants including groups playing in the water and groups with babies. A really special experience.

Very Interest
Scratchez... [TA], , London, United Kingdom

This was my first Safari outside Africa and I was not expecting much - I was pleasantly surprised. The animal life is mainly elephants - but in a good volume and they were very active. We also saw some foxes which was a decent spot. The deer are skittish but we managed 2 viewing including one mother with a very young child. Bird life was good and we also saw a couple of alligator and iguana.

Safari at Udawalawa
Hafsal [TA], , Auckland, New Zealand

Had a wonderful vacation in Sri Lanka after long time. Spent two days inside the national park and had a memorable and relaxed holiday.

Good park
Gillian44 [TA], , Australia

Had a great visit to the park and saw about 12 elephants, many birds , a star shell tortoise which is very rare to see, crocs deer and more. Our driver was very polite and well mannered and his truck was extremely comfortable with big leather chairs ( name is Max and charges the same as everyone else udawalawemaxsafari@gmail.com.
Enjoyed our time with him in the park
Also can highly recommend staying at the Nature House

Elephants are the stars
Commish14 [TA], , Shanghai, China

The highlight of this park is the elephants. There are plenty to see and at the right time of year there are lots of young ones too. Leopards are a rarity at this park but there are no shortage of beautiful birds, buffalo, and crocs to accompany the elephants...we were also fortunate enough to see some jackals and deer along the way.

Loads of elephants!
LPolwin [TA], , London, United Kingdom

We loved our safari in Uda Walawe National Park, we saw loads of elephants and managed to get really close in the jeep and just sit and watch them for ages. We are so glad we decided to come here and we later went to Yala national park and only saw one elephant.

good safari
goatfishE... [TA], , england

The park was full of animals that we had hoped to see, in particular the leopards. We were lucky enough to see two leopard cubs, three adult leopards, jackals, elephants, deer, elephants, crocodiles, buffalo and many many species of birds. Our safari driver was excellent in his knowledge and ability to spot birds and wildlife.

As good as Africa
Malcolm M [TA], , Portsmouth

Excellent national park. With a good guide as we had you will see lots of animals and birds. Our guide was supplied by Mahoora tented safari camp and he was really excellent. We really didn't need the tracker as supplied by the park although this was probably mandatory. All in all an excellent experience.

Elephant safari
Shenzie [TA], , UK

We had both a morning and afternoon Jeep Safari in Udawalawe NP. The main attraction here is being able to see Wild Elephants. I'd say the afternoon safari was better than the morning as you get to watch the Elephants come down for a bathe in the lake. They are such a beautiful animal and I could sit and watch them for hours. Please don't expect to see lots and lots of different species, this park is about Ellies.

What a great day
julians89... [TA], , Singapore, Singapore

This was my first safari in Sri Lanka and what an amazing experience it turned out to be. i was told that there are 2 options for safari, morning or evening. After much consultation, i was opted for morning safari, this means you have to wakeup very early. But boy !!! its all worth it. I came from Embilipitiya and morning ride over the lake was breath taking. And just as we entered the park within the 5 minutes we (me, guide and the driver) saw an elephant. And it got better and better. We encountered many more elephants within the day together with many other variety of birds and animals.

From the beginning i was told that uda walawe is famous for elephants. And take it from me. IT IS. If you are a nature lower and an elephant lover. then this is a must visit park in sri lanka.

Peacocks, peacocks, peacocks...
Dinko P [TA], , Zagreb, Croatia

Did you know that peacocks sleep on trees? If you visit Udawalawe national park early in the morning you will see hundreds of peacocks still up on the trees. Of course, Sri Lankan elephants, buffaloes, millions of birds, crocs, plenty of wild lief in the park. Good safari guides will show you birds hidden in the trees and bushes and will tell you a lot of details about the park and wildlife.

Go if you love elephants!
Sunsmiley [TA], , London

This park is not like the game reserves in Africa. Mostly elephants and birds. There were people coming to camp for a few nights but a few hours was enough. The jeep safari was good although when wet which it was felt a bit dangerous at times

wow ! Great trip
devid j [TA], , Brussels, Belgium

we went to udawala nationl park morning 7 am ... we see lot of elephant .. i love .. we want go again with my friend

A feeling of getting away from the tourists
Wildlifew... [TA], , Hampshire

We preferred Udawalawe National Park to Yala as when we entered it at 6am we were on our own as at Yala we were in a traffic jam with at least 50 other vehicles. In Yala as soon as something is spotted they text each other and loads of vehicles arrive at high speed to see it. None of those problems here; we only saw 4 other vehicles in the whole 5 hours.

We did however see hundreds of elephants, lots of different birds and a few foxes and deer. The views are simply spectacular with the mountains in the background.

One thing we did not know was that we could not go to the main lake/tank as it had rained and the roads were impassable. This was disappointing but I guess it shows it really is a wildlife park.

The other benefit of Udawalawe National Park over Yala is that you pay one set of park entry fees, which for us was 5200 Rupee (c£30) for the whole day and you can come and go as often as you like – a real bonus in this heat. At Yala it is this price each time you enter.

Truly amazing place
Philipper... [TA], , Kent

I went to udawalawa last summer and i can say it was one of the best places to see elephants. I stayied at Centuria hotel located in an old village with all modern facilties good food, air-con rooms ,exccelent pool and very friendly staff

nice trip
newtonabb... [TA], , belfast

have just returned from two week holiday, the safari around the park was vey enjoyable,only down side in our jeep we did not have a guide unlike the other jeep, the tour guide stayed with us and he was not much use in relation to giving any advice about animals or the land.plenty of elephants and crocs. stayed at the centuria hotel this hotel needs a lot of money spent on it our room was poor with a need of a refurbishment,sink leaked and the shower area was mouldy with a water spray that soaked everything but the user, other people on tour also said theirs was the same. food the usual not a great standard.,,
dont use this if you can go some where else

Elephants galore
Phil&Heat... [TA], , South England

We went to UdaWalawe last February whilst staying in Dickwella. It was a bit of a drive and I don't think our driver went there that often, as he seemed to have trouble finding it but once we were there we were assigned our jeep and guide and off we went.

Like all the guides we've had in Sri Lanka, this guy had amazing eyesight and spotted all sorts of animals that we would have missed. OK no Lepoards but no-one had promised we would see one as they are very rare. What we did see was more elephants than you could shake a stick at! Best of all there were lots of babies and unlike in Pinnawella, they were real wild animals as I nearly discovered while we were waiting outside the park!

We did meet people who had been to Yala but it sounded more "regimented" and we enjoyed having the personal touch of our own guide at our own pace.

Well worth it.

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