Located bordering the regions of Matale and Polonnaruwa Districts, Wasgamuwa national park was made a protected wildlife reserve to offer sanctuary to wild animals who were displaced during the Mahaweli Development Project. Representing the islands, dry zone evergreen forest, the national park’s diverse topography consists of hills, vast grasslands, swamps, and watering holes. These landscapes support a wide array of wildlife which is the major draw of the park.
Explorers and adventurers can venture into the park by signing up for safaris – which will indeed bring up close and personal encounters with the magnificent wildlife that is present here. The safari starts with a bumpy ride on modified 4×4 safari jeeps and proceeds with occasional stops at sites where the driver spots animals.
Some of the common animal species that can be spotted during your safari are the Asian elephants, mugger crocodiles, torque macaques, purple-faced langur, water buffalo, and Sri Lankan axis deer. Although it is rare, if you visit the park during dawn and dusk, visitors will have a high chance of spotting the famous Sri Lankan leopard and the sloth bear since these are nocturnal predators.
The park is renowned for having the highest biodiversity in terms of plant life that any other parks on the island and more than 150 species of flowering plant species have been recorded at the park. Along with a variety of bird species such as peacocks, Sri Lanka junglefowl, black-headed ibis red-faced malkoha Peafowl, painted stork, and Eurasian spoonbill the reserve also attracts migratory birds as it offers suitable breeding grounds and has an abundant supply of food. The sheer volume of wildlife makes the safari experience something more than just merely a drive through the wilderness – it transcends as an experience that gets your soul closer to mother nature!