Minneriya National Park: Our most recommended tours and activities

Minneriya: Minneriya National Park Private Safari

1. Minneriya: Minneriya National Park Private Safari

With the grace of majestic giants and pristine tropical dry forest settings, Minneriya National Park is a perfect spot to spend a few hours witnessing one of the most astonishing wildlife spectacles on earth.  Renowned as a prominent stopover for wandering elephants searching for food during the August and September the dry season, Minneriya National Park attracts up to 300 giants from the neighboring national parks. Enjoy the flicker of monkeys swinging through the branches and search the forest for the sight of majestic elephants, leopards, sloth bears, mongooses, spotted deer, sambar deer, wild buffalo, porcupine and Indian pangolins. Do not miss out on this quintessential safari destination in a strikingly beautiful forest.

Minneriya National Park Half Day Jeep Safari

2. Minneriya National Park Half Day Jeep Safari

Minneriya Wild Safarioffers Minneriya morning and evening safaris to observe its wildlife. Morning safari starts at 6:00 AM and lasts for 3-4 hours, best for seeing active animals like elephants, deer, and monkeys. The evening safari starts around 1:00 or 2:00 PM and lasts until sunset, good for seeing leopards, sloth bears, and bird species. Experienced guides lead both safaris and provide information on ecology and conservation. Book in advance, wear appropriate clothing and footwear, and follow park rules for safety and preservation.

Minneriya National Park Safari in a 4x4 Vehicle

3. Minneriya National Park Safari in a 4x4 Vehicle

Explore pristine tropical dry forest settings on a guided safari through Minneriya National Park with hotel pickup and drop-off from Habarana included. See wandering elephants, spot swinging monkeys, and enjoy a view of the Minneriya reservoir. Meet your driver at your hotel and head to the Minneriya National Park. Enter the forest, and enjoy the flicker of monkeys swinging through branches. As you drive through the grassland, keep an eye out for the giant elephants who have wandered over in search of food from neighboring national parks. Search the woods for an array of wildlife, including elephants, leopards, sloth bears, mongooses, spotted deer, sambar deer, wild buffalo, porcupines, and Indian pangolins. Stop for a stunning view of the Minneriya reservoir before returning to your hotel.

Sigiriya, Dambulla & Minneriya day tour

4. Sigiriya, Dambulla & Minneriya day tour

Experience the ultimate Sri Lankan adventure with our Sigiriya, Dambulla, and Minneriya National Park one-day tour. Travel in style and comfort with a licensed guide and a climate-controlled vehicle, exploring ancient sites and immersing yourself in the country's natural beauty. Your adventure begins with a visit to the iconic Sigiriya Rock Fortress, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that dates back to the 5th century AD. Enjoy stunning views as you hike to the top of the fortress, passing through ancient frescoes and mirror walls along the way. Next, we'll take you to the Dambulla Cave Temple, another UNESCO World Heritage Site that houses numerous statues and paintings depicting the life of Lord Buddha and his teachings. Admire the serene beauty of these sacred caves and learn about the ancient religious beliefs and practices of Sri Lanka. The tour culminates at the Minneriya National Park, where you'll enjoy an open-air 4x4 jeep safari in search of elephants, the park's most magnificent inhabitants. Get up close and personal with these gentle giants and observe the park's diverse wildlife, including a plethora of mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. The picturesque landscape includes a beautiful lake surrounded by jungle, making the tour a wonderful opportunity to relax and unwind amidst the breathtaking nature of Sri Lanka. Throughout the tour, you'll have the expert guidance of a licensed guide to provide you with deep insights into Sri Lanka's rich cultural heritage, its fascinating history, and diverse wildlife. The tour also includes transportation in a comfortable, air-conditioned vehicle and a delicious lunch to offer you the most pleasurable memories. This tour package is ideal for travelers seeking an intense cultural and nature experience within a short time. With #srilankabycar, the possibilities for adventure and exploration are endless. Join us on this incredible journey to experience the best of Sri Lanka's rich heritage, stunning landscapes, and wildlife diversity. Book now and discover why Sri Lanka is known as the land of wonder!

From Habarana or Sigiriya: Minneriya National Park Safari

5. From Habarana or Sigiriya: Minneriya National Park Safari

Venture to Minneriya National Park on this jeep tour from Habarana or Sigiriya. Explore this wildlife sanctuary that is a a dry season feeding ground for the elephant population from the forests of Matale, Polonnaruwa, and Trincomalee.  Be picked up from the comfort of your accommodation Habarana or Sigiriya. Sit back and enjoy the countryside on the way to Minneriya National Park. Ride through the park with an animal tracker.  Try to spot elephants along the grass fields on the edges of the Minneriya reservoir. Look for herds up to 150–200 elephants. Drive along looking for endemic monkeys like the purple-faced langur and toque macaque. Let your guide help you to see large herbivorous mammals like sambar and axis deer. Have the chance to look for rare and endangered species like leopards, sloth bears and the slender loris.  Go to the Minneriya reservoir which is an important habitat for large water birds such as the lesser adjutant stork, the painted stork, and the spot-billed pelican. Enjoy birdwatching in an area where flocks of 2000 cormorants have been reported.  Spend time among the tropical trees, plants, vines, and grasslands. Return to your accommodations in Habarana or Sigiriya at the end of your tour. 

Minneriya National Park Privet Wildlife Tour

6. Minneriya National Park Privet Wildlife Tour

Welcome to our thrilling wildlife tour at Minneriya National Park, where you'll embark on an unforgettable adventure into the heart of Sri Lanka's untamed wilderness. Get ready to witness the mesmerizing spectacle of the annual Minneriya Elephant Gathering, a breathtaking natural phenomenon that brings together hundreds of majestic elephants in one location. As you delve into the park's diverse ecosystem, you'll encounter a plethora of other fascinating wildlife, from elusive leopards and sloth bears to colorful birds and endemic reptiles. Our expert guides will lead you on a safari through the park's verdant landscapes, ensuring you have a safe and enriching experience while witnessing some of the most extraordinary wildlife encounters of your life. Summary of Main Activity: The main activity of this wildlife tour is the safari through Minneriya National Park, primarily focused on observing the awe-inspiring Minneriya Elephant Gathering, where hundreds of elephants gather near the Minneriya Tank during the dry season. This phenomenon provides a unique opportunity to witness these gentle giants up close and study their natural behavior. Tour Highlights: Minneriya Elephant Gathering: Experience the unparalleled wonder of observing a massive congregation of elephants, as they interact, bathe, and forage, creating an awe-inspiring spectacle. Diverse Wildlife: Encounter an array of fascinating creatures, including leopards, sloth bears, sambar deer, spotted deer, and a wide variety of bird species such as painted storks, pelicans, eagles, and kingfishers. Lush Landscapes: Immerse yourself in the scenic beauty of Minneriya National Park, with its lush greenery, picturesque landscapes, and serene water bodies. Expert Guides: Our knowledgeable and experienced guides will provide insights into the wildlife and ecosystem, ensuring you gain a deeper appreciation for the animals and their habitats. Responsible Tourism: We prioritize ethical and sustainable practices, ensuring that our tours have minimal impact on the environment and wildlife. Photography Opportunities: Capture stunning moments of wildlife in their natural habitat, creating lasting memories of your extraordinary adventure. Join us on this extraordinary wildlife tour at Minneriya National Park, and let the magic of nature's wonders unfold before your eyes. Discover the untamed beauty of Sri Lanka's wilderness and create memories that will stay with you forever.

All-Inclusive Minneriya National Park Afternoon Safari

7. All-Inclusive Minneriya National Park Afternoon Safari

Begin with an afternoon pickup from your hotel or residence and make your way to Minneriya National Park to begin the safari.  Minneriya National Park comprises about 21,000 acres (8,889 hectares), and contains a vast abundance of wildlife species. Take the opportunity to observe the large herds of magnificent Sri Lankan elephants in their natural habitat at close range. Also, be on the lookout for two rare species of monkey endemic to Sri Lanka, namely the Purple-faced Langur Monkey and the Toque Macaque. Other rare and endangered species such as Sri Lankan leopard and Sri Lankan sloth bear inhabit the park, as well as saltwater crocodiles and Indian pythons, which you may be lucky enough to spot! After a 3-hour safari spotting these various rare animals, your transport will return you to your accomodation.

From Colombo: 8-Day Private Tour of Sri Lanka with Transport

8. From Colombo: 8-Day Private Tour of Sri Lanka with Transport

Day 1: Airport to Sigiriya / Dambulla welcome by our English-speaking driver from hotels at Colombo and drive to Sigiriya on the way Visiting Dambulla Golden cave temple Evening Minneriya, Kaudulla, or Hurulu Eco national parks 4x4 safari according to Elephant’s availability Overnight at Sigiriya Day 2: Sigiriya to Kandy Earlier morning climb Sigiriya Rock before sun become rough which is suitable for pictures and climbing to the top and back to the hotel for breakfast after driving to Kandy on the way, Nalanda Gedige, Mathale Spice garden (only for a visit), Gem Museum and Workshop, & Hindu temple later Kandy city tour Evening View the traditional Kandyan Cultural Dance Performance and Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic Overnight at Kandy Day 3: Kandy to Nuwara Eliya After breakfast, drive to Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens, Peradeniya (Kandy) Later to Nuwaraeliya on the way Ramboda Falls, Tea Plantation, and Tea Factory after that Nuwara Eliya City Tour Overnight at Nuwara Eliya Day 4: Nuwara Eliya to Ella After Breakfast Drive to Visit Gregory Lake and Victoria Park Garden after 12.40 train ride to Ella do the gorgeous panoramic view train Evening Climbing Little Adam’s peak Ella Overnight at Ella Day 5: Ella to Tissamaharama / Yala National Park After Breakfast Drive to Tissamaharama on the way visiting Rawana waterfall and Buduruwagala Rock Temple Evening 4x4 Safari in Yala National Park Safari (most visited and second largest national park in Sri Lanka, bordering the Indian Ocean) Overnight at Tissamaharama Day 6: Tissamaharama to Mirissa After breakfast drive to Mirissa on the visit snake farm Evening Leisure at the beach resort. Overnight at Mirissa Day 07: Mirissa Earlier morning 6.30 AM whale watching from Mirissa. come back to hotel and travel to Bentota and visit Sea Turtle Hatchery & Rescue Center and Later visit Galle Dutch Fort (Galle Fort, in the Bay of Galle on the southwest coast of Sri Lanka, was built first in 1588 by the Portuguese, then extensively fortified by the Dutch during the 17th century from 1649 onwards) and Madu river boat safari Leisure at the beach resort. Overnight at Mirissa Day 8: Time to Say Bye Mirissa to Colombo or Negombo Wake up to a freshly-prepared breakfast at the hotel and then get ready to check out as it’s time to say ‘Goodbye’ to Sri Lanka. You will be transferred to Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo or Negombo for your onward journey back home

From Kandy: Sigiriya Rock, Village Tour and Minneriya Park

9. From Kandy: Sigiriya Rock, Village Tour and Minneriya Park

Start your tour at 6:30 AM with pickup from your hotel in Kandy. The first stop on your itinerary will be the Sigiriya Rock Fortress, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. which you will reach at approximately 9:00 AM. Rising from the central plains, the iconic rocky outcrop of Sigiriya is perhaps Sri Lanka's single most dramatic sight. Near-vertical walls soar to a flat-topped summit that contains the ruins of an ancient civilization, where you will discover spellbinding vistas across mist-wrapped forests in the early morning. Climb a series of vertiginous staircases attached to sheer walls to reach the top of the ruins. Pass a series of frescoes and a pair of colossal lion's paws carved into the bedrock. Marvel at the surrounding landscape of lily-pad-covered moats, water gardens, and quiet shrines that surround the site. After visiting the fortress, proceed to a local village in Sigiriya to experience a village tour. Get a chance to go on an oxen cart ride, and experience the world from the view of a local farmer. Afterwards, take a relaxing catamaran safari through a calm lake. Stroll through the golden fields ripe with their harvest of paddy. Watch a traditional cooking demonstration, that teaches you the basics of Sri Lankan cuisine. Delight your taste buds with a home-cooked lunch; made over a wood-fire and served on fragrant lotus leaves placed over woven trays.  After experiencing the village life of Sri Lanka, travel onwards to Minneriya National Park to go on safari. See the famous Sri Lankan elephants, rare bird species, saltwater crocodiles, Indian pythons, and an abundance of flora and fauna. On completion of the jeep safari at approximately 6:00 PM and return to your hotel in Kandy, stopping along the way for dinner, at your own expense.

From Negombo: Minneriya National Park Safari Tour

10. From Negombo: Minneriya National Park Safari Tour

Your friendly driver will meet you at your hotel in Negombo at 8:00 AM. The park is a 30-minute drive away. Sit back and enjoy the ride and take in some of the stunning landscapes as you head there. At Minneriya National Park you'll enjoy a safari experience by Jeep as you explore the vast expanses of land. The park is famous for its Elephant population and hopefully you'll see many of them roaming by the lakes or exploring the jungles. You'll also likely catch glimpses of Wild Buffaloes, Boars, Spotted Deer, Sloth Bears, and even Leopards and Crocodiles. The park is also home to many amphibians, different kinds of reptiles and birds also. Your guide will point out the extraordinary wildlife to you. After the safari, you'll be taken back to your hotel.

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