Top 3 Places to See Elephants in Sri Lanka

With its endless beaches, gorgeous sunsets and wildlife, there are many reasons to visit Sri Lanka. As one of the few remaining countries in the world where we can see wild elephants, an Asian safari experience should be on your itinerary! Here are our top three places to see wild elephants on your next trip to the island:

 Yala National Park

Situated on the South-East coast of Sri Lanka, Yala is the largest and most visited national park in the country. Why is this park at the top of our list? There are over 350 elephants in this park, so your chances of spotting a couple elephants (and their babies) are pretty high! You can visit the park year-round since animal sightings can happen anytime, but we’d recommend that you try to visit during the dry season (February to June) as more elephants will be searching for water ponds. Lastly, you might be lucky enough to spot a Sri Lankan leopard on your tour!


Udawalawe National Park

Elephant lovers must visit Udawalawe National Park! This park is known to be one of the best places in the world to see elephants in their natural habitat. Similar to Yala, elephants can be seeing year-round, but the best time to visit is during the dry season of the region (May – September). What are some of the reasons you might choose to visit Udawalawe? In terms of wildlife, Udawalawe National Park has the highest concentration of Sri Lankan elephants in the country. A benefit of a safari in Udawalawe over Yala is that it’s less busy, you won’t be sharing the sightings with many other tours. This park is also 1/3 the size of Yala, so your chances of seeing elephants are very high.

Minneriya National Park

Minneriya National Park is special because of an event called the ‘Gathering of Elephants’. A large gathering of elephants emerges from the evergreen forest to congregate at Minneriya’s water reservoirs during the dry season, which occurs from June to October each year. You could find yourself alongside up to 200 elephants all in one place! If snapping photos alongside many other tourists is not your cup of tea, there are many elephants roaming around the park year-round so you will likely spot a few no matter when you visit.