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  • Lunugamvehera

Lunugamvehera

Covering an area of 24,000 hectares, Lunugamvehera National Park was established for protection of elephants migrating from Yala to Udawalawe National Park. The dry-mixed forests are rich in biodiversity and a home to a large number of wild elephants and buffaloes. Also, some other species of mammals such as fishing cat, grey mongoose, wild boar, spotted deer and mouse deer are found in this area.

 

Lunugamvehera National park extending to 23,499 hectares mixed with dry evergreen forests of flora and 3,283h occupied with the Lunugamvehera reservoir. The national park is an important habitat for water birds and elephants as a corridor for elephants to migrate between Yala National Park and Udawalawe National Park.

 It is estimated that Fauna of the park includes 21 fish species, 12 amphibians, 33 reptiles, 183 birds and 43 mammals.

The Park, being a dry zone forest records temperature close to 30 degrees centigrade with rain between November and January each year making the park suitable for visiting all year round.

 

Climate and vegetation in Lunugamvehera National Park

The park is located 261 km southwest from Colombo, Monargala in Uva Province. Lunugamvehera is in the Dry zone of Sri Lanka; therefore the park is exposed to annual drought, relieved by the south western monsoon.

There are two access points to the park. The entrance to the park is located on the Hambantota-Wellawaya road near Thanamalwila and the other entrance is from the Galge on Sella Kataragama – Buttala Road. This entrance is more suitable to access the Veheragala Reservoir or the Ruins. There is very little traffic from this entrance since most prefer Yala over this National Park but this area too is filled with wildlife.

 

Wildlife in Lunugamvehera

The rich birdlife and serene surroundings make Bundala a real paradise for birders. These wetlands are home to nearly 200 bird species, both endemic and migratory who have made it a popular nesting and breeding ground. Some of the bird species found here include Jungle fowl, Sri Lanka Woodshrike, Chestnut headed bee-eater, Blue Faced malkoha, Sri Lanka Brown capped Babbler, Spot-Billed pelican, Malabar Pied hornbill, Grey heron, Black headed ibis, Painted stork, White-necked stork, and Marshall's iora, Asian openbill, Jungle owlet, Barred bustard quail, Indian peafowl, Crested hawk eagle, Crested serpent eagle, White-bellied sea eagle, Indian roller, Grey-Headed fish eagle, Indian pitta amongst other dry zone birds.

The park is rich in biodiversity and is a favourable habitat for large herds of Elephants, Wild Buffalo in addition to 43 species of mammals such as Wild Boar, Sambar deer, Spotted deer, Sri Lankan Axis deer, Fishing cat, Asian Palm civet, Grey mongoose, Grizzled Giant squirrel, Sloth bear and Mouse deer.

 

Safari at Lunugamvehera

There are 3 safari options available for the guest.

1.       Morning Safari (6.00am)

2.       Afternoon Safari (2.30pm)

3.       Full day Safari

The safari would take place with an experienced guide in specially modified comfortable jeeps for unique safari experience. The tour could be more customized for guests for their preferences (Family safari, honeymoon safari, photography safari etc.).

 

Tour in brief

Initial meeting with the Ecoteam crew and the safari guide, a brief of the tour will take place in the entrance to the Lunugamvehera Safari. For the morning half-day tour, the starting time will be at 6 a.m. while the afternoon tour begins at 2.30 p.m.

After entering the national park with your guide in a jeep, you will be able to spot several species of birds and other animals that have made their homes in this sanctuary. The guide will explain about the various interesting attributes as you will learn and enjoy about the flora and fauna of Lunugamvehera

You will be taken through most of the Lunugamvehera National Park, covering the wetlands, grasslands, forest patches, etc. We will make longer stops at certain watering holes for unique photography opportunities.

Finishing the safari, either round 11 a.m. or around 6 p.m. you will be dropped at the park entrance.

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Office Address : 20/63, Fairfield Garden, Colombo 08, Sri Lanka

 

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