This is a leopard country, and they are the Lords of the Jungle! With a leopard density that's higher than anywhere else on this planet, these menacing predators prowl majestically in Yala, while elephants roam in their numbers with cautious deer scampering by their side
From September 1st to as it is now decided, end October, parts of Yala National Park will be closed for visitors. Namely Palatupana & Katagamuwa, the mostly visited entrances leading into Block 1 & 2 will be closed. This is largely due to the drought experienced in these areas with water available for animals greatly reduced.
The Galge and Yala West gates in between Buttala and Kataragama will remain open covering Block 3 & 5.
There are four Gates to the Park. Gates at Palatupana and Katagamuwa leading to Blocks 1 & 2 remain the most visited. However, the two Gates at Galge on the Buttala-Kataragama Road, covering Blocks 3 & 5 are becoming known among visitors who do not want to contribute to congestion. There are reports of frequent sightings of leopards on these routes, too.
If you are traveling on the Buttala-Kataragama Road, watch out for wild animals, especially elephants. This road literally runs through the park and some elephants are in the habit of soliciting fruits from motorists by standing across the road, allowing passage once appeased. However, elephants will give way when a vehicle approaches and are known to be well-mannered. Don’t assume every elephant venturing on to the road to be people-friendly. Drive cautiously; never alight your vehicle.
|Area||378 sq miles|
|Location||260km South East of Colombo|
|Entry points||Gate1: Katagamuwa Gate 2: Palatupana Gate 3 & 4: Galge|
|Aver.Temp||26.4 °C (79.5 °F)|
|Climate||Dry most of the year|
|Distance to nearest city||25km - 30 minutes drive|
|Best time to visit||June to September|
|Open hours||6am to 6pm|
|Made a Park in||1st March 1938|
|Distance from Kataragama to:||Katagamuwa Entrance: 14Km Palatupana Entrance: 41Km Galge Entrance: 18Km|
|Distance from Buttala to:||Galge Entrance: 25Km|
|Nearest Hospital:||Debarawewa Government Hospital|
|Head office:||Open from 9am to 6pm|