birding tours sri lanka. Best birding safaris in Asia

This tour is designed to cover as many of our 33 endemics and other 465 recorded bird species as possible, as well as to see to see leopards, sloth bears and elephants with a personal birding guide to guarantee an inspiring experience.

Sri Lanka has become a popular destination for ornithologists and bird-enthusiasts from around the world, mainly due to the high endemic that surpasses even countries like Costa Rica. This birding paradise boasts a variety of environments including wet to dry zones, jungles, hill country, lowlands and tropical rain forests where a stunning list of endemic, resident and migratory birds can be found.

We invite you to explore Sri Lanka’s inspiring world of colourful birds, flora and flagship mammals with this special birding tour which encompasses a select list of renowned bird-watching locations and national parks.

Introduction

birdingtourIntroduction

Your tour begins in Kitulgala where you can encounter some fascinating species of birds including the endemic Sri Lanka Wood Pigeon, the White-faced Starling and Green-billed Coucal.

Then visit the virgin Sinharaja rainforest, which is considered a biodiversity hotspot where 95% of Sri Lanka’s 33 endemic bird species can be found.

Udawalawe National Park has also become a popular spot for bird enthusiasts and is home to species including the Red-face Malkoha and Crested Serpent Eagles. Here we can “bag” a good number of “dry zone” residential birds.

Tour the Bundala Park, which was declared Sri Lanka’s first Ramsar site with its 197 species of birds including the migratory Greater Flamingo,and then the famous Yala National Park which is home to 215 different species of birds and Sri Lanka’s flagship mammals the Asian elephant, sloth-bears and leopards.

Then en route to Nuwara Eliya you will visit Hakgala where the endemic Dull-blue Flycatcher is the star of the botanical garden. See the awe-inspiring Horton Plains and spend the night in Sri Lanka’s hill capital Kandy. We will also take you to the KuruluKele Bird Sanctuary in Kegalle to tick off anything you may have missed, before you unwind on the sandy beach of Negombo for a final day of relaxation.

 

Itinerary Details

Itinerary details

Day 01: Airport -Kithulgala

birding tours in wildlife tours in Sri LankaUpon your arrival in Sri Lanka, you will be transferred to Kitulgala which was used as a location in the filming of David Lean’s award-winning film ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’ and is considered one of the island’s most picturesque locations as well as a hotspot for endemic birds. Depending on your time of arrival, you can choose to rest at your hotel, or do a short bird-watching trail with your personal Guide and hope to encounter some of Sri Lanka’s endemic bird species including the Orange-billed Babbler and the Chestnut-backed Owlet that have been recorded here.

 

Day 02: Kithulgala

After breakfast, enjoy a full-day tour of the Makandawa rain forest in Kitulgala which boasts an impressive list of endemic, migratory and resident birds. Many of the wet zone endemics such as the Sri Lanka Green Pigeon, Hanging Parrot, Layard's Parakeet, Sri Lanka Grey Horn bill, Yellow-fronted Barbet, Black-capped Bulbul and the Spot-winged Thrush can be found here. Afterwards, you will spend the night close to nature at a beautiful Forest Edge Hotel.

 



Day 03: Kithulgala - Sinharaja

birding4After breakfast you will then be taken to the Sinharaja rainforest, which was named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Another highlight of this forest is the mixed-species of bird flocks, averaging up to 42 individual species, which makes this the world's largest mixed-species bird flock. The mixed-species bird flock study of the Sinharaja forest has been continuing since 1981 and is considered the World's longest bird flock study. Birding highlights include the Red-faced Malkoha, Sri Lanka Blue Magpie, White-faced Starling and Scaly Thrush.After lunch, check-in to your hotel in Sinharaja before a bird-watching tour in the forest. We have also planned a night birding trail, where you may spot some of Sri Lanka’s nocturnal species including the Chestnut-backed Owlet and SerendibScops Owl, with an overnight stay at the Blue Magpie Hotel, which we have selected due to its close proximity to the forest.

 

Day 04: Sinharaja

birding1Following an early breakfast, enjoy a day of exploration (with packed lunches) in the beautiful Sinharaja rain forest where we will search for more wet lowland forest birds including endemics. Depending on your interest, our guide will also help you to identify many butterflies, dragonflies, reptiles, forest mammals and other wildlife. If you are feeling up to it you can also do a night-walk along the peripheries of the reserve.

 

Day 05: Udawalawe

Enjoy a pre-breakfast trail before you are taken to Udawalawe where you will check-in at the Big Game Tented Camp. Go on a safari at the 30,821-hectare dry zone game park in Udawalawe, where you may see an array of resident bird species including Grey Hornbills and Brown-capped Babblers as well as birds of prey such as the White-bellied Sea Eagle and the Crested Serpent-eagle. This park is famous for its herds of elephants, seen feeding and bathing at watering holes with their playful calves. Among the migrant birds found here are Purple Kingfishers, Forest Wagtails, Indian Pittas, Whiskered Terns, Osprey Sand Pipers and Terns. A night-time birding trail has also been organized for you after dinner.

 

Day 06: Udawalawe – Bundala - Yala

birding3Begin your day with a pre-breakfast birding trail on the borders of the National Park before you transfer to the Bundala National Park for a special jeep safari. Bundala has been recognised as an internationally important wintering ground for migratory birds. An evening safari at the Yala National Park has also been organised with a night birding trail and an overnight stay at the Big Game Camp in Yala. Boasting the highest leopard population density in the world, the Yala National Park is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts while being widely noted as the best place in the world to film and photograph the Sri Lankan Leopard.

 

Day 07: Yala – Nuwara Eliya

Venture back into the Yala National Park for a morning safari to see some of the 215 different bird species that reside within the park. You may be able to spot species such as Barbets, Blue-Breasted Quail and Barred Buttonquail as well as mammals like the Asian elephant, sloth-bears and leopards. Then we will whisk you off to the hills of Nuwara Eliya where on the way you will visit the Hakgala botanical gardens. You will spend the night at the Avian Breeze in Nuwara Eliya.

 

Day 08: Horton Plains - Kandy

birding2Before dawn, with packed breakfasts, you will be taken to the Horton Plains National Park in the central highlands of Sri Lanka which has also been recognized as of the Important Bird Areas (IBAs). Horton Plains is home to several resident and endemic species of birds including the Yellow-Eared Bulbul, Wood Pigeon, Sri Lanka Bush Warbler and most importantly, the endangered Sri Lanka Whistling Thrush and Scaly Thrush. We will also look for Sambar Deer and the endemic purple-faced Monkey. After a late lunch you will proceed to the hill capital of Kandy with an overnight stay at Polwatta Eco Lodge.

 

Day 09: Kandy –Kegalle - Negombo

In the morning, after a birding trail, you will leave for Negombo with the option of visiting Kandy’s cultural sites en route. If there’s time, you may even visit the KuruluKele Bird Sanctuary in Kegalle. KuruluKele is a protected area of just over 113 hectares where once again you will be able to spot some of the 95 recorded bird species, including 10 endemics, such as the Spur fowl, Yellow-Fronted Barbet, Ceylon Small Barbet and the Legge’s Flower pecker that grace the island-paradise. Then you will be stay night at the tranquil St. Lachlan Hotel before the final day.

 

bird4Day 10: Airport

On the final day of the program you can choose to transfer to the Bandaranaike International Airport for your flight back or extend your stay according to your requirements.

                                                                                                    

 

End of the Programme

 

 

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(+94) 70 222 8 222

 Addess : 20/63, Fairfield Garden,
Colombo 08, Sri Lanka

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