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Lunugamvehera National Park

Located in close proximity to the town of Sella Kataragama, the Lunugamvehera National Park is one of the more overlooked national parks in the country, as it is overshadowed by its neighbouring Yala National Park and Kumana National Park. Covering more than 23,000-hectares wedged in between the Uva Province and Southern Province, the Lunugamvehera National Park is still a treasure trove for the nature enthuse, as it boasts of kaleidoscopic flora and fauna that prove to be rare and endemic to the country, making it an idyllic location to delve into what makes the island paradise the exotic destination it is.

Best Known For

  • The Lunugamvehera National Park is famed for being a haven for a number of wildlife in Sri Lanka that prove to be endemic, rare and even endangered, making it an important slice of land that conserves the exotic nature of Sri Lanka.
  • The park is also known for being a birder’s paradise, as it is home to numerous endemic and migrant species that would make many in-awe at the very sight of the winged animals.

Interesting Facts

  • The Lunugamvehera National Park may be considered to be one of the younger national parks in the country, as the area was only established as a national park in 1995.
  • The reason for the area to be established as a national park was to protect the catchment area of the Lunugamvehera Reservoir and to serve as a corridor for elephants who migrate between the Yala National Park and Udawalawe National Park. Thus the reason as to why elephant sightings are quite common.
  • Although established in 1995, the national park was inaccessible at times to the public during the Sri Lankan Civil War, which finally ended in 2009.
  • According to the Wildlife Department, it is confirmed that 21 species of fish, 12 amphibians, 33 reptiles, 183 birds and 43 mammals inhabit the national park.
  • Notable mammals that live in the wilderness of the park are the Sri Lanka Deer, the Wild Boar and the rare Sri Lankan Sloth Bear.
  • The highlight of the park though, is the abundant number of endemic birds and migratory birds that nestle in the treetops of the park’s lush flora.
  • Bird watching enthusiasts always find it a treat to visit the park, as it is home to exotic species of birds, such as the Grey Heron, Black-headed Ibis, Asian Openbill, Painted Stork, and the Spot-billed Pelican.
  • If you are lucky, you might spot migrant leopards from the Yala National Park roaming around hunting prey or drinking at the watering hole.

Times, Seasons and Tips

  • The park is open from 6.00am to 6.30pm, however, the ideal time to visit the park is during the wee hours of the morning or during the evenings, as the park is alive with the sound of birds chirping their musical notes. You might find it easy to spot the herds of elephants at the watering hole too.
  • The national park is a yearlong destination, however, the best time to visit the park is between the months of February and October as the migratory birds come to take refuge in the area, making it all the more diverse.
  • Do keep in mind, just like all other parks, there are costs that have to be incurred apart from the ticket price.
  • Such costs would include Value Added Tax (VAT) and Jeep hiring charges with guide.
  • It is recommended to be properly attired with safari clothing, along with other essentials like water and plenty of snacks.
  • Please adhere to the rules and regulations set forth by the park authorities and the guide you set out with.
  • Please refrain from bringing any polythene or plastic, as the national park is one of untarnished beauty and it would be a shame if its biodiversity hotspot was to be destroyed.
  • As always, do remember to bring along your camera, as the park is perfect to partake in some wildlife photography.

All in all, the Lunugamvehera National Park does not disappoint in what it has to offer for the nature enthuse, as it boasts of a diverse and an exotic range of flora and fauna that would leave the traveller awe inspired.

Location info

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Season

February - October

Tickets

Adults
LKR 1,800
Children
LKR 900

Tickets At

Type

Nature and Outdoors

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