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Yala National Park

Yala National Park (Sri Lanka)

Practical information about Yala National Park

  • Beach / Seaside Resort
  • Nature Reserve / Wildlife Observation / Safari
  • Desert
5 / 5 - 2 reviews
How to get there
6hrs by car from Colombo
When to go
From February to October
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Yala National Park

Anne Vergnaud Travel writer
19 travel articles

A wonderful safari in Yala National Park.

My suggestion:
Go in the company of a good lookout!

You really mustn't miss the opportunity to go on a safari when visiting Sri Lanka. Yala, the country's second largest national park, is an ideal place for this!

I was absolutely stunned by the beauty and diversity of the scenery – tropical rainforest, desert populated with arid plants, dry deciduous forest and sandy beaches – and by all the animals that populate each of these habitats.

I set off very early in the morning and quickly encountered some elephants, including a three-week-old baby, which was being protected from the crocodiles by its siblings. I only just managed to avoid being bitten by a hungry monkey – yes, the animals really are wild. But the most exciting moment of the day for me was when the spotter stopped, backtracked, and I got to see a leopard, resting perched up on a high branch. For more than 30 minutes, I had the opportunity to take photographs of it and admire it.

The elephants of Yala.
Emeline Mainy Travel writer
13 travel articles

The Yala National Park is in a most beautiful setting. It is the country's second biggest park, located in south-east Sri Lanka.

My suggestion:
Check it out! Just...don't forget to charge your camera and allow yourself to be carried along by the delicious expectation of seeing a leopard leap out in front of you and set off at dawn.

Having already visited the island's National Park when I was travelling in Sri Lanka , I wasn't really expecting to repeat the experience. However, my guide was very insistent, so I allowed myself to make a detour to the park by changing my initial itinerary...bad decision!

The Yala National park is located by the coast and extends over 979 km2 in a beautiful. natural setting. It is teeming with animals of every sort basking in nature and the fascinating play of light. I can remember a peacock flying ahead of our Jeep for quite a few minutes in the rosy morning light, like a heavenly guide with its beautiful wings outstretched to show us the way to go. You can hear the roaring of the leopards but you're unlikely to see them. There are coyotes, hippopotamuses, multicoloured birds of every kind, crocodiles, monkeys, elephants and deer, all living in this natural space that I urge you to explore.

Buffalo in the Yala National Park
Yala National Park