Tourists visit Minneriya largely because of elephants, especially in dry season. Some researches showed around 150-350 elephants living there. Best time to spot elephants in the late afternoon (from 15:00 to 18:00) when these animals are the most active.
The area was designated as a national park in 1997, and had been declared as a wildlife sanctuary in 1938.
Flora and fauna
Park is inhabited by 24 species of mammals, 160 species of birds, 9 species of amphibians, 25 species of reptiles, 26 species of fish, and 75 species of butterflies. Large numbers of Sri Lankan elephants are attracted to grass fields on the edges of the reservoir during the dry season. The park is an important habitat for the two endemic monkeys of Sri Lanka: purple-faced langur and toque macaque.
The wet season lasts during the north eastern monsoon from October to January, while dry season lasts from May to September.
1 Minneriya Visitors Entrance, Maradankadawala-Habarana-Thirukkondaiadimadu Highway, ☎ . 6:00 - 18:00.
Fees and oermits
Entrance ticket for foreigners costs US$15 + Tax (as of Aug 2017).