$7,950 per person sharing (if booked by March 31, 2021)
March 07 – 21, 2022
Our Sri Lanka Land & Sea Safari gives you the chance to witness Sri Lanka’s iconic “Big Five” — leopard, sloth bear, Asian elephant, blue whale and sperm whale — along with the incredible opportunity to look for rare and endangered species hardly seen by humans, including the slender loris, fishing cat and jungle cat. And – we’ll meet the “stars” of Disney’s “Monkey Kingdom” feature film at the Primate Center in Sigiriya, including toque macaques, hanuman langurs, and purple-faced langurs. Other exciting species we could encounter include large reptiles like Mugger crocodiles and land and water monitor lizards, several varieties of turtle, golden jackal, grazers like spotted deer and sambar, stripe-necked mongoose and ruddy mongoose, and hundreds of different bird species including over 30 endemic species.
With a history dating back to the birth of time, Sri Lanka is famous for its diverse landscape which transforms from azure seas to green mountains literally within hours of each other. Nowhere else in the world can offer a traveler such a remarkable combination of stunning landscapes, diverse terrestrial and marine wildlife, pristine beaches, captivating cultural heritage and unique experiences within such a compact location. Within an island roughly the size of the state of Indiana or South Carolina, lies 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, coastline, national parks showcasing an abundance of wildlife, lush tea estates, botanical gardens, waterfalls and lakes, and a culture that extends back to over 2,500 years.
We’ll begin our safari in Wilpattu National Park, Sri Lanka’s largest and oldest national park, where the main draws are leopard and sloth bear. Wilpattu is not only famous for its wildlife but also for its archaeological and historical importance as the birthplace of the Sinhalese kingdom. In Sigiriya, part of Sri Lanka’s famous Cultural Triangle, we combine in-depth culture and intimate wildlife experiences as we explore the ancient ruins of Polonnaruwa and Sigiriya rock fortress, interact with langurs and tocque macaques at the primate research center, and search for nocturnal slender loris at the Sam Popham Arboretum.
Onward to the hidden gem of Sri Lanka’s national parks – Gal Oya National Park, home to the largest inland body of water in the country and with it, iconic swimming elephants and forest-dwelling Vedda tribe. At Gal Oya we will also have the special opportunity to spend the day with a field biologist for the Fishing Cat Conservancy. Next, we will spend a day getting closer to the Asian elephant as we visit Udawalawe National Park, known for its large number of these social pachyderms, and the Elephant Transit Home, where orphaned elephant calves are rehabilitated for ultimate release back into the wild. The pinnacle of our land-based safari is Yala National Park, known as one of the best, if not the best, places in the world to see leopard, along with a large variety of small mammals, grazing herbivores, reptiles. amphibians, and spectacular bird life.
The experience shifts to the “Sea” portion of our safari with two incredible boat trips out of Mirissa into the Weligama Bay as we scout for the largest animal to ever grace the Earth – the magnificent Blue Whale. The southern coast of Sri Lanka is one of the best places in the world to see blue whales, and we’ll take advantage of that with two exclusive whale watching trips. Along with blue whales, we’ll have the chance to see sperm whales, fin whales and several types of dolphin, and go snorkeling at a beautiful reef.
Optional pre- or post-tour extensions to India for tiger viewing can also be arranged.
View Full Safari Itinerary:
Our small group trips are capped at 8 travelers maximum to ensure a personalized experience. By traveling in a small group, however, we maximize the value of the trip by being able to offer special advantages that we would not be able to provide otherwise, including an exclusive boat for our whale watching excursions, and thanks to our biologist connections, the unique opportunity to spend a full day with a fishing cat researcher based in Gal Oya National Park. The Wild Source will provide a trip leader to help you navigate this new and exciting ‘out of Africa’ offering, and we’ve partnered with top naturalist guides to share their expertise on Sri Lanka’s fauna and flora as we explore a huge array of ecosystems on this incredibly diverse island.