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Endemics of srilanka & big game expedition

Date Monday, 18 May 2015 09:38
Cost Details :

Per Adult: USD 1450 Per Person on Twin Sharing Basis (Based on Min 12 Pax Travelling Together ) 

Single Supplement : USD 375 

Triple Reduction : USD 50

Flights : Approx 300 – 400 USD Return on Srilankan Airlines

Sri Lanka has seduced travellers for centuries. Marco Polo described it as the finest island of its size in the world, while successive waves of Indian, Arab and European traders and adventurers flocked to its palm-fringed shores, attracted by reports of rare spices, precious stones and magnificent elephants. The Country packs an extraordinary variety of places to visit within its modest physical dimensions, and few islands of comparable size can boast a natural environment of such beauty and diversity. Lapped by the Indian Ocean, the coast is fringed with idyllic – and often refreshingly undeveloped – beaches, while the interior boasts a compelling variety of landscapes ranging from wildlife-rich lowland jungles, home to extensive populations of elephants, leopards and rare endemic bird species, to the misty heights of the hill country, swathed in immaculately manicured tea plantations 

Day 1: Colombo Arrival & Transfer to Sinharaja Rainforest Reserve 

Arrive in Colombo and transfer to Sinharaja, the location of one of the few remaining primary rain forests of the world. (Approx 6 – 6 ½ hours).Spend your day at leisure exploring the surroundings.Overnight – Blue Magpie, Sinharaja – Standard rooms on FB basis

Day 2: Sinharaja Exploration 

Take a jungle trek through the Sinharaja Rainforest, Sri Lanka’s last remaining rainforest and home to most of the island’s endemic birdlife. Sinharaja Forest Reserve – one of the least disturbed and biologically unique primary lowland rain forests in Sri Lanka, covering an extent of over 11000 hectares. Of international significance and declared a Man and Biosphere Reserve (MAB) in 1978 when UNESCO included it in its international network of Biosphere reserves. It was subsequently designated a National wilderness area in 1988 and received full status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1989. Situated in the lowland wet zone of the country with an average temperature of 23.6C and an annual rainfall of more than 2500mm the high level of endemism makes it an international rarity. More than 60% of the trees are endemic and it is home to over 50% of Sri Lanka's endemic species of mammals and butterflies, as well as many kinds of insects, reptiles and rare amphibians. Of Sri Lanka's endemic birds, all 22 rainforest species are seen here, including the elusive Red-faced Malkoha, Green-billed Coucal and Sri Lanka Blue Magpie.Overnight – Blue Magpie, Sinharaja – Standard rooms on FB basis

Day 3: Sinharaja – Yala National Park 

After a leisurely breakfast, transfer to Yala. (4 ½ - 5 hours) Thereafter, enjoy an afternoon safari at the Yala National Park. Overnight – Chandrika Hotel, Yala – Superior rooms on FB basis

Day 4: Yala National Park  

After a leisurely breakfast, transfer to Yala. (4 ½ - 5 hours) Thereafter, enjoy an afternoon safari at the Yala National Park. Overnight – Chandrika Hotel, Yala – Superior rooms on FB basis. Yala – Sri Lanka’s most known National Park is popular for Elephant, Leopard, Bear, Crocodile and Wild Boar. 97,800 hectares in extent, this is the second largest of Sri Lanka’s National Parks. Its open undulating terrain made it famous for elephants for many years, but recently the park has also received much fame through publicity by National Geographic and the Discovery TV channels, which focused on a leopard research/conservation and identification project. Claims have subsequently been made that Yala National Park has the world’s highest concentration of leopard per square kilometre. Vegetation is primarily grassland and shrub jungle with patches of dense growth while several salt and fresh water lagoons are a haven for a large variety of resident and migrant birds. Areas popular with leopard are rock strewn hillocks with dense shrub in which the animals hide.Overnight – Chandrika Hotel, Yala – Superior rooms on FB basis

Day 5: Yala – Bundala – Yala 

 In the morning make your way to Bundala (Approx 1 ½ hours) for a morning safari at the well renowned bird sanctuary of Bundala, a home and resting place to many feathered species in the region.Bundala National Park is an internationally important wintering ground for migratory water birds in Sri Lanka. Bundala harbors 197 species of Birds, the highlight being the Greater Flamingo, which migrate in large flocks. Bundala was designated a wildlife sanctuary in 1969 and redesignated to a national park on 4 January 1993. In 1991 Bundala became the first wetland to be declared as a Ramsar site in Sri Lanka. In 2005 the national park was designated as a biosphere reserve by UNESCO, the fourth biosphere reserve in Sri Lanka. The national park is situated 245 kilometres (152 mi) southeast of Colombo.Afternoon game drive at the Yala National Park.Overnight – Chandrika Hotel, Yala – Superior rooms on FB basis

Day 6: Yala – Nuwara Eliya 

Enjoy one last safari at the Yala National Park. Thereafter, travel to the beautiful city of Nuwara Eliya, (Approx 3½ - 4 hours) nick named “Little England” for its lovely refreshing and surroundings. Appreciate the scenic landscapes on your way.Nuwara Eliya – Sri Lanka's premier hill resort with a fine bracing mountain climate, Nuwara Eliya is also the heart of Sri Lanka's tea country, producing some of the world’s best tea.  The mountain slopes and valleys are a carpet of velvety green tea plantations, interspersed with gushing streams and tumbling waterfalls. Red or green roofed plantation bungalows, English country style homes and hotels with lovely flower gardens, a fine 18 hole golf course and a racecourse gives Nuwara Eliya a decidedly British character.Visit the Victoria Park for an evening of birding. Possible noteworthy species: FOREST WAGTAIL, GREY WAGTAIL, YELLOW-EARED BULBUL, INDIAN BLUE ROBIN, PIED GROUND-THRUSH, INDIAN PITTA, KASHMIR FLYCATCHER, CEYLON WHITE-EYE.

Day 7: Nuwara Eliya – Horton Plains – Colombo

Leave early morning (approx. 5 am dep) with a packed breakfast and lunch for an exciting trek in the Horton Plains National Park. (Approx 1 ½ hours per way)Sri Lanka's highest plateau 7200 ft above sea level in the central mountain country.  This ‘Fen” is a very scenic region with an astounding variety of scenery from mountains to grasslands, from marshes to trout streams. Sri Lanka's best-flavored high grown teas are grown in the surrounding areas.  Spectacular view from 'Worlds End' where the plateau plunges a thousand feet in a straight sheer drop.  Cool and bracing climate, and very good hiking country. Distinctive flora (many English field flowers grow on the plains) colourful butterflies and many rare highland birds. Thereafter, transfer to Colombo and spend your rest of the day at leisure. (Approx 4 ½ hours)Overnight – Cinnamon Red, Colombo – Standard rooms on HB basis

Day 8: Colombo City Tour , Shopping & Departure. 

After breakfast, explore the capital of the country and enjoy some shopping Like many capital cities in developing countries Colombo is fast changing its face. Almost overnight, skyscrapers arise from where old buildings once stood, yet in some parts; the old world charm is retained. A 100-year-old clock tower and several British built, colonial buildings are still to be seen in the city.  The Pettah bazaar – where one can shop for bargains, a Hindu and a Buddhist temple, residential areas where you find the stately homes of the affluent, the Colombo museum, the Bandaranaike memorial international conference hall – an outright gift to Sri Lanka from the people’s republic of china, the new parliament in Sri Jayewardenepura and the folk art center are some of the places of interest that one can visit to. Depart Colombo in the evening and transfer to the airport in time to catch your flight back home. 

  • 07 nights accommodation. Room categories and meal basis as specified above.  
  • Transfers in an air-conditioned vehicle.
  • 01 BNHS Expertise FOC 
  • 01 Ltr Daily Mineral Water Bottle
  • Services of an English Speaking Specialist Bird Guide.
  • Entrance fees to the National Parks.
  • Entrance fees to the Sinharaja Rainforest. 
  • Cost of services of a trekker to accompany the clients in Sinharaja.
  • 04 Jeep Safaris at the Yala National Park. – Luxury Jjeeps
  • 01 Jeep Safari at the Bundala National Park. – Luxury Jeeps
  • Hotel service charges and VAT
  • Visa Charges 
  • Optional excursions
  • Tips of personal nature

Sinharaja  Rainforest  Reserve: A national park and a biodiversity hotspot in Sri Lanka. It is of international significance and has been designated a Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The hilly virgin rainforest, part of the Sri Lanka lowland rain forests ecoregion, was saved from the worst of commercial logging by its inaccessibility, and was designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1978 and a World Heritage Site in 1988. The reserve's name translates as Kingdom of the Lion, it is a treasure trove of endemic species, including trees, insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. An interesting phenomenon is that birds tend to move in mixed feeding flocks, invariably led by the fearless greater racket-tailed drongo and the noisy orange-billed babbler. Of Sri Lanka's 26 endemic birds, the 20 rainforest species all occur here, including the elusive red-faced malkoha, green-billed coucal and Sri Lanka blue magpie. Reptiles include the endemic green pit viper and hump-nosed vipers, and there are a large variety of amphibians, especially tree frogs. Invertebrates include the endemic common birdwing butterfly and the inevitable leeches.

Yala National Park : The most visited and second largest national park in Sri Lanka. The park consists of five blocks, two of which are now open to the public, and also adjoining parks.. Yala was designated as a wildlife sanctuary in 1900, and, along with Wilpattu was one of the first two national parks in Sri Lanka, having been designated in 1938. The park is best known for its variety of wild animals. It is important for the conservation of Sri Lankan elephants, Sri Lankan leopards and aquatic birds.The park is situated in the dry semi-arid climatic region and rain is received mainly during the northeast monsoon. Yala hosts a variety of ecosystems ranging from moist monsoon forests to freshwater and marine wetlands. It is one of the 70 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in Sri Lanka. Yala harbours 215 bird species including six endemic species of Sri Lanka. The number of mammals that has been recorded from the park is 44, and it has one of the highest leopard densities in the world.

Bundala Wetland & National Park: It  has been identified as an outstanding Important Bird Area in the South Indian and Sri Lankan wetlands.324 species of vertebrates have been recorded in the national park,which include 32 species of fish, 15 species of amphibians, 48 species of reptiles, 197 species of birds and 32 species of mammals. 52 species of butterflies are among the invertebrates.The wetland habitats in Bundala harbours about 100 species of water birds, half of them being migrant birds. Of 197 avifaunal species 58 are migratory species.

Horton Plains National Park: A protected area in the central highlands of Sri Lanka and is covered by montane grassland and cloud forest , it is rich in biodiversity and many species found here are endemic to the region. This region was designated a national park in 1988. park is also an Important Bird Area with many species not only endemic to Sri Lanka but restricted to the Horton Plains. Forest dieback is one of the major threats to the park and some studies suggest that it is caused by a natural phenomenon.The sheer precipice of World's End and Baker's Falls are among the tourist attractions of the park.

Population :19,722,000

Capital :Colombo

Area :65,525 square kilometers 

Language :Sinhala, Tamil, English

Religion :Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, Muslim

Currency :Sri Lankan rupee

Hotels used

Blue Magpie Lodge / Similar Sinharaja AP www.bluemagpie.lk/ Standard Rooms 2
Chandrika Hotel / Similar Yala AP http://www.chandrikahotel.com/ Superior Rooms 3
St Andrews / Similar Nuwara Eliya AP www.jetwinghotels.com/jetwingstandrews/ Superior Rooms 1
Cinnamon Red / Similar Colombo AP www.cinnamonhotels.com/CinnamonRED.php Standard Rooms 1