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Minneriya-Giritale Sanctuary

Giritale, Polonnaruwa, Giritale 51000, Sri Lanka
+94 272 246 311
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A gathering of elephants Polonnaruwa  Sri Lanka

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Sun - Sat 7am - 8pm

A gathering of elephants

The Minneriya National Park circles a lake, or tank, created almost 2,000 years ago. The park is part of an elephant corridor that also includes Kaudulla and Wasgomuwa parks. Each year in August and September, over 300 elephants converge to enjoy the tank as its water level recedes and uncovers especially tasty fodder.

Any time of year is good for viewing elephants here, though. When my husband and I visited in late February, there were elephants aplenty, mostly groups of females and young ones. It was a delight to see the little tuskers chasing after each other on the shores of the tank. Our guide and driver also pointed out numerous birds, some of them endemic to Sri Lanka.

Our outing was organized by our hosts at Aliya Resort and Spa, a resort themed around paddy life and related topics, including elephant protection ('Aliya' means 'elephant' in Sinhalese).