Day 1 : Arrive Colambo
Upon arrival in Colombo Sri Lanka, you will be greeted by a representative from our ground agent who will transfer you to your accommodation.)
Day 2 :Colombo – Kithulgaya
You are met by a professional guide for the drive to Kitulgala rain forest for two nights. This trip takes approximately three hours and will take you through lush wet zone home gardens containing small scale spice cultivations, rubber plantations, over perennial rivers and streams. Some endemic birds found here are the Yellow-fronted Barbet, Ceylon Hanging-Parrot, Ceylon Spurfowl, Green-billed Coucal, Red-faced Malkoha, Layard’s Parakeet, Spot-winged Thrush and the Ceylon and Ceylon Crested Drongo Rufous.
Day 03: Kithulgaya
The Kalani Valley Forest Reserve is a low country rainforest containing a host of endemic birds and other wildlife unique to the Island. Some of these birds are found around home gardens and will be a fascinating experience. One of the more sort after endemics is the Chestnut-Backed Owlet. We will head to a known stakeout in search for the Chestnut-Backed Owlet.
Day 04: Kithulgaya – Sinharaja
fter breakfast you embark on your next adventure and leave for Sinharaja rainforest [A UNESCO World Heritage site] for three nights, which covers an area of 11,187 hectares of primary and secondary forests. It is home to many endemic Sri Lankan fauna and flora and is the best location to see mixed species bird flocks and offers an ideal opportunity to see a range of endemic, resident and migrant species.
Day 05: Sinharaja
The former logging roads provide the best access for prime birding in Sinharaja which are home to Orange-Billed, Babbler , Ceylon Crested Drongo, Red-Faced Malkoha, Ceylon Blue Magpie, Ceylon Hill-Myna, Ashy-Headed, Laughing Thrush, Green-Billed Coucal, Lesser Yellownape, Orange Minivet, Indian Scimitar Babbler, Black-Naped Monarch, Yellow-Fronted Barbet, White-Faced Starling, Sri Lanka Spurfowl, Yellow-Browed Bulbul, Bronze-Winged Pigeon, Spot-Winged Thrush, Legge’s Flowerpecker, Brown-Backed Needletail, Green Imperial Pigeon, Sri Lanka Blue Magpie, Chestnut-Backed Owlet, Scaly Thrush, Sri Lanka Hanging Parrot, Black-Throated Munia, Layard’s Parakeet, Black Eagle, Rufous-Bellied Eagle, Legge’s Hawk Eagle, Crested Goshawk Besra, Dark-Fronted Babbler and Velvet-Fronted Nuthatch.
Day 06: Sinharaja
The diversity of butterflies in Sinharaja is high. The rare species we are hoping to see would include Blue Okeleafe, Five-Bar Swordtail, Great Crow and The Tree Nymph. As for mammals, the dense Rainforests tends to keep them more elusive. Although the endemic Purple-Faced Leaf Monkey, Red Slender Loris, Layard’s Flame-Back Squirrel can be found. On occasions, owling at night may reveal some of these mammals and others such as Indian Palm Civets. Day 07: Sinharaja – Embilipitiya We take a four hour drive to Embilipitiya. The observant traveler may witness the changing of three climatic zones as you descend gradually into the low country. The changing lifestyles, industries and agriculture of the people are very intriguing. If time permits we will also visit a village trading fair. Embilipitiya is where most tourists base themselves in order to visit Udawalawa National Park. By lunchtime, we will reach our hotel where we have lunch, rest and spend one night
Day 07: Sinharaja – Embilipitiya
We take a four hour drive to Embilipitiya. The observant traveler may witness the changing of three climatic zones as you descend gradually into the low country. The changing lifestyles, industries and agriculture of the people are very intriguing. If time permits we will also visit a village trading fair. Embilipitiya is where most tourists base themselves in order to visit Udawalawa National Park. By lunchtime, we will reach our hotel where we have lunch, rest and spend one night
Day 08: Embilipitiya
We will departure early morning to Tissa for a two night stay. Afternoon we will visit to Yala National Park in safari jeeps. Yala was declared as a Game Park in 1938 and is 965 sq. kilometres. This park is one of the best locations in the world to look for Leopards, but there is much more to Yala as other wildlife such as Golden Jackal, Sloth Bear, Wild Boar, Spotted Deer,Sambhar, Water Buffalo, Stripe-necked Mongoose, Asian Elephant, Toque Macaque and Tufted Grey Langur could all be found. On the birding front, we will look for: Indian Peacock, Sri Lanka Jungle Fowl, the superb Indian Pitta, Ashy-crowned Sparrow Lark and more.
Day 09: Tissa
On our second day, we will visit Bundala National Park – a Ramsar site. Bundala is a fascinating wetland, home to 150 species of winter migrant and resident birds. Among the larger water birds you could also see Lesser Adjutant, Painted Stork, Asian Openbill, Eurasian Spoonbill, Black-Headed Ibis and Woolly-Necked Stork. Shorebirds that can be seen at Bundala include: Lesser and Greater Sandplovers, Pacific Golden, Little Ringed, Kentish and Little Ringed Plovers, Little Stint, Marsh, Common, Wood and Green Sandpipers, Eurasian Curlew, Black Tailed Godwit, Red-Necked Phalarope, Pintail Snipe and Ruddy Turnstone.
Day 10: Tissa
Before ascending to Nuwara Eliya in the hills, we will drive through dry zone cultivations and home gardens. You will witness one of the most renowned waterfalls of Sri Lanka the Ravana Falls named after the Infamous King Ravana of the Hindu epic the Baghavthgeetha. The winding road leading to Nuwara Eliya gives a good perspective of the country’s people their gardens and agriculture.
Day 11: Nuwara Eliya
Our second day begins with a pre dawn start to the Horton Plains National Park for the endangered Sri Lankan Whistling Thrush. Horton Plains is the only National Park in Sri Lanka where visitors are allowed to walk freely. It is situated 2200 m above sea in the central highlands of Sri Lanka, approximately twenty kilometers south of Nuwara Eliya and covers 3162 hectares. It is home to a wet Montane climate with a mean annual temperature of 15degrees centigrade. The vegetation in Horton Plains is defined as Montane Rainforests or Cloud Forests which shows gnarled and stunted growth not exceeding 15 meters in height.
Day 12; Nuwara Eliya
Today we will explore the tea plantatio ns of the central hills and visit a tea factory. We will then descend to the one time capital of Sri Lanka, Kandy, until the 1860’s the main crop of the country was coffee, but in 1869 the Coffee Rust Fungus killed the majority of plantations, resulting I the birth of tea plantations. The picturesque setting of the Peradeniya Botanical Gardens contains over 4000 species of plants in 147 acres of land. The Indian Flying Fox colony will be of our principal interest, but we will also expect to see Alexandrine Parakeet, endemic Ceylon Small Barbet and the Indian sub continental endemics such as Common Hawk Cuckoo and Lesser Hill-Myna.
Day 13: Kandy
Prior to breakfast we will visit Udawattakele forest, a secondary forest which harbours some interesting bird species such as Brown Fish Owl and Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher including several other endemics. We continue northwards to Sigiriya Rock Fortress a well-known archeological site. Sigiriya is a listed world heritage site, and its history spans from pre historic times to the Eighteenth Century.
Day 14: Kandy
The rock frescoes found here are unique and well preserved as are the gardens. From an ornithological point the forests around are exceptional. Oriental and Indian Scops Owl, Spot-Bellied Eagle Owl and Jerdon’s Nightjar are the highlights in the forests, surrounding the fortress. Other interesting species are Orange-Headed Thrush, Indian Blue Robin, Indian Pitta, Greater Racket-Tailed Drongo and the endemic Ceylon-Wood Shrike
Day 15: Departure
We will visit Sigiriya forest [or have an option to climb the rock fortress to see frescos of celestial nymphs and probably have good views of the resident Shaheen Falcon]. There are many reservoirs in the surrounding area and visiting these will add more water birds to the list as well as dry zone birds including: Grey-headed Fish Eagle, Purple Sunbird, Stork-billed Kingfisher, Thick-billed Flowerpecker, Asian Paradise Flycatcher, White-rumped Shama, Gold-fronted and Jerdon’s Leafbird, Ceylon Grey and Malabar Pied Hornbills, Indian black Robin, Orange-headed Ground Thrush and Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher.We depart after lunchtime for the airport.