|National Park||Fact Sheet|
Wilpattu is Sri Lanka’s largest National Park and covers an area of approximately 1300 sq.km. The unique feature of this park is the existence of "Willus" (Natural lakes) - Natural, sand-rimmed water basins or depressions that fill with rainwater. Nearly one hundred and five lakes (Willu) and tanks are found spread throughout Wilpattu. The geographical location of Wilpattu National Park is striking with the main block of land bordering the north western coast and stretching approximately thirty six kilometres.The main zone of the park is sandwiched between the Modaragam Aru river and the Kala Oya river.
The area is also historically significant and known for being the landing place of Prince Vijaya in the 543 BC in Kudiramalai (Horse point) from India and established the first Sri Lankan dynasty and the Sinhala people, now the largest ethnic group in the country.
During the Sri Lankan Civil War 1983 and 2009, Wilpattu also became a battleground, leading to the park’s closure to the public in 1988, until it reopened in March 2003, after 16 years.
Lakes are, not surprisingly, Wilpattu’s USP, as the water availability in the villus has led to a rich species diversity and sustainability at the Wilpattu National Park is quite varied and is home to thirty five different mammalian species and a sizable bird life.Wilpattu’s famous residents are the leopards, sloth bear, Asian Elephant, Water Buffalo, Wild Boar, Jackals, Barking Deer, Spotted Deer, Mugger Crocodiles and Indian Python.
Park Open : Open Throughout the year
Best Season : February - June
Main Attraction : Leopards, Elephants, Sloth bears, bird-life
Shortest Route : Fly to Colombo & drive to wilpattu
Nearby : Kalipitiya (80 km), Mannar (85 km), Minneriya (120 km),
Province : North-Central Province
Area : 1,317sq. km
Altitude: 10 - 152 m
Vegetation : Salt grass & low scrub
Major City: Anuradhapura (40 km)
Airport : Colombo (142 km)
Railway Station : Anuradhapura (40 km)
Colombo : 142 km
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