Kaudulla National Park

Water birds in kaudulla national park in Sri Lanka
Endemic land birds at Kaudulla National Park in Sri Lanka
An Indian peacock at Kaudulla National Park in Sri Lanka

An important link in the 66.6 square kilometres large elephant corridor that links Somawathiya and Minneriya National parks, Kaudulla offers a good chance of getting up close with the elephants of various ages and sizes as well as offering an occasional glimpse of the endangered Sri Lanka leopards and rusty spotted cats.

Structured around the Kaudulla Reservoir, one of the 16 tanks that make the vast irrigation system of 16 reservoirs created by King Mahasen, Kaudulla National Park provides a great refuge to the elephants of the area even during the dry season. The main reservoir is backed by a network of small tanks spreaded around the national park, which makes it an ideal habitat for elephants throughout the year.

The dry evergreen forest found around the tank supports nearly 200 elephants. Incidentally, a number of these herds found within the park are made solely of young bull elephants.

Visitors approaching the park through either one of the two main access roads are often greeted by large herds of elephants, crossing the road on a gentle trot.