Last updated: 20/01/2017 [Design & Pictures by Simons Nature]
Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka, formerly known under the colonial name Ceylon, at the very end of the Indian subcontinent, offers a diverse nature in relatively small space. The island is subdivided into a wet and a dry part, together with great differences in altitude and thus forms a diverse biotope. In 2014, I had the honor of enjoying the wilderness and nature for three weeks. With my guide Senarath Bulathsinhala, the best bird guide I've ever had, we wandered through jungles, plantations and swamps, always looking for bird species and, of course, other animals like elephants, leopards and numerous butterflies. In total, over 200 different species could be added to my collection.
Kandy (Sinhalese: මහනුවර Mahanuwara, pronounced [mahanuʋərə]; Tamil: கண்டி, pronounced [ˈkaɳɖi]) is a major city in Sri Lanka, located in the Central Province, Sri Lanka. It was the last capital of the ancient kings' era of Sri Lanka. The city lies in the midst of hills in the Kandy plateau, which crosses an area of tropical plantations, mainly tea. Kandy is both an administrative and religious city and is also the capital of the Central Province. It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1988.
Nuwara Eliya (Sinhalese: නුවර එළිය [nuwərə ɛlijə]; Tamil: நுவரேலியா) is a city in the hill country of the Central Province, Sri Lanka. Its name means "city on the plain (table land)" or "city of light". The city is the administrative capital of Nuwara Eliya District, with a picturesque landscape and temperate climate. It is at an altitude of 1,868 m (6,128 ft) and is considered to be the most important location for tea production in Sri Lanka.
Horton Plains National Park is a protected area in the central highlands of Sri Lanka and is covered by montane grassland and cloud forest. This plateau at an altitude of 2,100–2,300 metres (6,900–7,500 ft) is rich in biodiversity and many species found here are endemic to the region. This region was designated a national park in 1988.
Sigiriya or Sinhagiri (Lion Rock Sinhalese: සීගිරිය, Tamil: சிகிரியா, pronounced see-gi-ri-yə) is an ancient rock fortress located in the northern Matale District near the town of Dambulla in the Central Province, Sri Lanka. The name refers to a site of historical and archaeological significance that is dominated by a massive column of rock nearly 200 metres (660 ft) high. According to the ancient Sri Lankan chronicle the Culavamsa, this site was selected by King Kasyapa (477 – 495 CE) for his new capital. He built his palace on the top of this rock and decorated its sides with colourful frescoes.
Sinharaja Forest Reserve is a national park and a biodiversity hotspot in Sri Lanka. It is of international significance and has been designated a Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The hilly virgin rainforest, part of the Sri Lanka lowland rain forests ecoregion, was saved from the worst of commercial logging by its inaccessibility, and was designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1978 and a World Heritage Site in 1988. The reserve's name translates as Lion Kingdom. The reserve is only 21 km from east to west, and a maximum of 7 km from north to south, but it is a treasure trove of endemic species, including trees, insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals.
Udawalawe National Park lies on the boundary of Sabaragamuwa and Uva Provinces, in Sri Lanka. The national park was created to provide a sanctuary for wild animals displaced by the construction of the Udawalawe Reservoir on the Walawe River, as well as to protect the catchment of the reservoir. Udawalawe is an important habitat for Sri Lankan elephants, which are relatively hard to see in its open habitats. Many elephants are attracted to the park because of the Udawalawe reservoir, with a herd of about 250 believed to be permanently resident.
Yala National Park is the most visited and second largest national park in Sri Lanka. The park consists of five blocks, two of which are now open to the public, and also adjoining parks. Yala National Park has a variety of ecosystems including moist monsoon forests, dry monsoon forests, semi deciduous forests, thorn forests, grasslands, marshes, marine wetlands, and sandy beaches. The area under forest cover mainly consists of Block I and rangelands of open parkland (Pelessa grasslands) including some extensive grasslands. The forest area is restricted to around the Menik River while rangelands are found towards the sea side. Other habitat types of the Block I are tanks and water holes, lagoons and mangroves and chena lands.
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