Home to the world’s largest gathering of Asian elephants

Minneriya National Park

Minneriya National Park forms part of the elephant corridor that connects Kaudulla and Wasgamuwa National Parks, providing visitors with the opportunity to see elephant herds all year.

Home to the world’s largest gathering of Asian elephants

The large Minneriya lake is a magnet for elephants from neighbouring Kaudulla and Hurula National parks as water sources begin drying up in June. As the lake shrinks, sprouting grass on the lakebed provides an irresistible attraction for elephants.

The elephant congregation reaches its peak size in August-September.

Other wildlife

The park is also an important habitat for Sri Lanka’s two endemic monkeys, the purple-faced langur and the toque macaque. Large herbivorous mammals such as Sri Lankan sambar deer and Sri Lankan axis deer frequent the park.

Leopards, Sloth Bear and Grey Slender Loris also inhabit the park but sightings are infrequent.

Among the rich migrant and resident birdlife are endemics like Sri Lanka jungle fowl, Sri Lanka hanging parrot, brown-capped babbler, Sri Lanka grey hornbill, black-crested bulbul, and the crimson-fronted barbet.

Apart from Crocodiles and monitor lizards, there are 8 endemic reptiles including the red-lipped lizard.


The park offers safaris in the morning and evening.

The morning safari is prime time for bird watching and observing small elephant groups. There is time to observe the endemic purple-faced langur and toque macaque, and other small mammals.

The evening safari is best suited to seeing larger herds of elephants congregate at the lake.

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