Udawalawe Holidays

Udawalawe National Park sits in the southern shadows of Sri Lanka's Central Highlands and is largely comprised of grasslands and bush forest. The park is regarded as the prime location for observing Asian elephants with over 500 roaming the park.

The elephants often roam in herds of up to 100, so during a visit it is not unusual to see adults and their young feeding or bathing and playing in the water – it's undoubtedly a remarkable and memorable experience.

In addition, the park is home to a great number of other species, including spotted dear, sambur, water buffalo, wild board, macaques, monitor lizards and jackal. Whil leopards and other wild cats reside in Udawalawe, it is rare to spot them.

Endemic birds include the Sri Lankan junglefowl, green pigeon, grey hornbill, woodshrike and swallow. Other bird species include pelican, cormorants, heron, egrets, stork and bee-eaters. As you drive across the grassy plains you may also see a huge variety of beautiful butterflies.

Supported by the Born Free Foundation, the nearby Elephant Transit Home helps care for injured elephants from all over Sri Lanka. After rehabilitation, the elephants are released back into the wild, many into Udawalawe National Park. A highlight is to watch the orphans at feeding time from the viewing platform.

Why visit Udawalawe?
  • Chance to see wild elephants
  • Numerous other wildlife species
  • Exciting location for bird enthusiasts
  • 4WD game safaris
Essential facts about Udawalawe
Local Time

GMT + 5.5 hours


Sri Lankan rupee. Travellers cheques are not accepted.

Travel information

The driving time to Udawalawe is around 4 hours 30 minutes from Nuwara Eliya.

Best time to go

Udawalawe can be visited throughout the year, however migrant birds can only be seen between November and March.

Visa information

A visa may be required. Please ask for details.

Find out more