Yala National Park Safari In Southern Province, Galle/Unawatuna/Weligama/Mirissa
Are you planning your next holiday in Southern Province of Sri Lanka and want to visit Yala National Park? If you’re visiting Sri Lanka, chances are that a safari of Yala National Park can be the highlight of your trip. Yala National Park is considered the most visited and second largest national park in the country, and provides a Jungle experience you won’t easily forget. Its tropical wetlands and leopards make it a must visit spot in Sri Lanka.
In this guide, we will explain all there is to know before visiting Yala National Park, like fees, what to do, what to spot and more. So, read along and prepare yourself for the best Yala National Park experience that you can get – now it’s easier than ever to make the most out of your visit to Yala, no matter where you stay: Galle, Unawatuna, Weligama or Mirissa.
Yala National Park Safari Tour: What Is It?
Yala National Park is considered one of the most important national parks in Sri Lanka due to the visibility of many species of threatening animals. It is a huge area with a lot of trees, grasslands and wetlands that attract a great diversity of biodiversity in terms of birds and animals.
The park is also known for its large population of leopards. It boasts the highest density of leopards in the world, with a possibility of spotting one while you are on your safari. The sight of these majestic animals in their natural habitat is an experience that you won’t forget easily.
But Yala National Park isn’t only renowned for the big cats, but also other animals like Sloth Bears, Wild Boars, Ella (axis) Deer, Sambhur Deer and a rich bird life with more than 130 different species. In addition, there are more than 95 species of reptiles, making this park such an incredible place for wildlife spotting.
How To Organize Yala National Park Safari?
Organizing a Yala National Park Safari is easy, yet doing things right can save you some time and money. Here’s how:
1. Setting Up The Logistics
Yala National Park is located 240 km away from Colombo, which is roughly 6-7 hours drive if you’re coming from the capital of Sri Lanka. This means you can easily make it a trip for multiple days from Unawatuna, Mirissa, Weligama or Galle if you wish to include more activities or even make it a relax day after the safari activities.
2. Research Prices & Book Online
We highly recommend exploring your options on a website such as GetYourGuide. Here you can check the availability and prices for a wide range of safaris, pick up times and so on. It makes it easy to find an experienced company with an experienced guide that speaks your language.
3. Avoid Lobby Tours
At most tourist destinations in Sri Lanka hotels offer lobby tours that are attractive due to their low rates – but normally tend to be quite intense and basic with some companies saving on expenses like entrance fees and not taking the time to comment on sights or provide guiding on sight. We highly recommended researching your options online and going for more specialized tours that offer entrance fees included, bilingual guides and more value for your money.
What To Expect From The Safari?
A Yala Safari experience depends mainly on which tour operator you choose – but normally the type of experiences vary from moderate to intense activities.
Of course Yala National Park itself offers plenty of attractions – but a Yala Safari also depends on the time you arrive as well as what type of vehicle your tour operator uses. Most Yala Safaris include a visit to the entrance area of the park as well as one or two basic activities like bird watching or bird photography, which usually last 2-3 hours and tend to be easier and more relaxed while providing some valuable insights into the local wildlife.
The moderate activities include tours that could last up to 4 hours are filled with larger overviews and explanations of landmarks, trails and other pertinent information about the park in a more intensive manner. These tours include stops for bird watching, vehicle exploration (optional), photography and more.
The intense activities typically last between 5-6 hours depending on the number of stops you make and could include any combination of jeep rides, bird spotting, viewing spots or trekking activity with an experienced guide and/or park ranger depending on the type of tour you choose to go with.
What To Bring For The Safaris?
No matter which type of activity or tour you choose, it’s highly recommended to bring some basic supplies to ensure your comfort and safety while on your safari at Yala National Park:
- Water bottles
- Bug repellent
Naturally it’s important that you follow the directions of your guide – so be prepared to respect any wildlife regulations or other rules from the park management. Furthermore its always safer to take enough water along with some basic snacks like nuts or energy bars – especially if you find yourself needing a refreshing break during your safari.
The weather in Yala can also change quickly, so it’s also smart to check the forecast in order to be prepared – so if necessary bring along warm clothing too.
Tips For The Best Yala National Park Safari Experience
Since reptiles and animals tend to stay well hidden during the day – its best to go out early when they are still active in search for food or other activities – so try to choose an early morning or late afternoon tour if available. Also remember to bring along cash – some guides accept credit cards but entrance fees and permits can only be paid in cash at different stations. Finally – be aware that certain parts of the park may be closed during certain times – so keep yourself updated about these closures ahead of time in order for you to make the best out of your Yala Safari!
All in all –Yala National Park can offer a lot of wonderful sightseeing opportunities and experiences if done right – so be sure to enjoy all that this fantastic place has to offer! If you’re looking for an incredible safari experience with experienced guides with excellent knowledge about the local wildlife and sights – we highly recommend booking your Yala National Park Safari Tour on GetYourGuide now. Get ready for an unbelievable potential leopard encounter in this beautiful national park!
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