A peaceful, hidden gem

Gal Oya National Park

Avoiding the crowds, Gal Oya gives an opportunity to soak in the best of Sri Lanka’s wildlife in lush tranquil surrounds.

A peaceful, hidden gem

Gal Oya encompasses the country’s largest inland body of water, the Senanayake Samudraya Lake, which is peppered with small islands. The park was created to protect the forests around the lake as a catchment area.

Out of all the mammals in Gal Oya National Park, Elephants are the strongest swimmers.

A boat safari is the best way to explore this pristine wilderness, and gives a rare and unique opportunity to observe elephants swimming from one island to the next, foraging and socializing at the water’s edge.

Other wildlife

Although Gal Oya is best known for its elephants, the 25,000 hectares of lush evergreen forest and open savannahs around the calm waters are also home to 32 species of mammal including the langur, toque macaque, leopard, sloth bear, wild boar, water buffalo and deer.

Birdwatchers can spot up to 150 species. The tree-studded grasslands around the lakes are good places to find White-bellied Sea Eagle, Grey-headed Fish Eagle, Serpent Eagle and the Crested Hawk-Eagle.

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