Gal Oya National Park

Explorer by Mahoora Camps - Gal Oya National Park Sri Lanka

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Private Tented Safari Camp Experience in Gal Oya

Living Experience
Explorer by Mahoora is a highly unique and immersive experience of living with untamed Sri Lankan wildlife inside National Parks and Nature Reserves across the country. Our Private Tented Safari Camp Experience in Gal Oya isolates you in the grasslands of the 25,900 hectare Gal Oya National Park.

Divided between an evergreen forest and a dusty savannah, you are invited to live amongst swimming elephants and elusive leopards, plus, over 180 other species of mammals and birds. Besides the wildlife, Gal Oya is home to an old Veddha clan. Veddhas are the indigenous people of Sri Lanka and this tribe still lives in the Nilgala area of the Gal Oya National Park.

Gal Oya National Park


The Explorer by Mahoora Living Experience combines rustic with modern. Enjoy a spacious, tented accommodation (15.6’x 8’) which includes a cosy bedroom, en-suite bathroom with a flushable toilet and complimentary toiletries, as well as a private veranda/ porch outside the tent. Your stay with us will always be carbon neutral.

food and beverages at explorer by mahoora camps gal oya national park  in sri lanka

Dining Experience

Dining, too, is an adventure with Explorer by Mahoora. While you enjoy a quiet cup of tea at sunset or wait for a hot meal to cool under the stars, not too far away… the grey langur monkeys, sloth bears, elephants, wild boars, water buffalos and leopards roam for their own supper.

At nightfall we make your wild dinner experience a little extra special. Listen to the campsite come alive with nocturnal animal whispers carried by the wind, and follow the flaming torches to your private starlight supper by a crackling campfire.

Your wild dining is set up within the campsite, and meals are freshly prepared by our executive chef on-site. Menus are deliciously local and carefully designed for your palate, so your culinary journey matches the rest of your adventure.

Gal Oya safari Experience

Game Drives let you explore your new home at the Gal Oya National Park, by land and water. Jeeps or Boat Safaris let you experience everything from an elephant roaming the savannah, to swimming from one island to another.

Are you game for your wildest fantasy to become a reality?

swimming elephant at explorer by mahoora camps gal oya national park in sri lanka
a boat ride at explorer by mahoora camps gal oya national par in sri lanka


  • A tent (15.6’x8’) with accommodation, an en-suite bathroom, and a private veranda/porch

  • Tented accommodation with raised beds with freshly laundered bed linens and a bedside table along with basic amenities

  • Fully-sealed tent with ventilation nets

  • Equipped with a shoe rack and two foldable arm chairs

  • One rechargeable table top fan is provided in the bedroom

  • A rechargeable lantern is provided for illumination

  • The veranda/porch includes two chairs and a coffee table

2 nights/ 3 days Itinerary

Private Tented Safari Camp Experience in Gal Oya

  • Arrival at Entrance to the Gal Oya National Park meeting point at 12.30 hr

  • Drive to Explorer by Mahoora campsite situated inside the Gal Oya National park in a 4WD safari jeep

  • Lunch at the campsite inside the Gal Oya National Park

  • Evening Jeep safari at Gal Oya National Park

  • Return to the campsite

  • B.B.Q. Dinner around the campfire

logo of the pioneer since  1998 : mahoora tented safari camps gal oya national park sri lanka

The Gal Oya National Park is the only national park where it is possible to go on a boat safari in Sri Lanka. Wildlife viewing from the boat is for the various islands that dot the Senanayake Samudra (Reservoir).

History and Description of the Gal Oya National Park Sri Lanka

The Gal Oya National Park situated in Sri Lanka's South Eastern Province was established in 1954 by the Gal Oya Development Board. Its primary function is to protect the catchment area of the vast Senanayake Samudra. It was subsequently handed over to the Department of Wildlife Conservation in 1965. This Reservoir is the lake which holds the largest amount of water in Sri Lanka.

The Buddhangala Sanctuary which is one of the four protected areas that make up the Gal Oya National Park has ruins of a dagoba and other buildings dating back to the 2nd Century BC. It is believed that Lord Buddha visited here during his last time in Sri Lanka. In the hilly country to the West of the Park was one of the last strongholds of Sri Lanka's indigenous tribes, the Veddas.

Flora and Fauna at Gal Oya National Park

The Gal Oya National Park is rich in both flora and fauna. About 45 percent of the Park is covered by evergreen forest and a further 33 percent is taken up by savannah areas. The 25,900 hectare Park has about 32 species of mammals including the Common Langur, the endemic Toque Macaque, Sri Lankan leopards, Sri Lankan sloth bears, Sri Lankan elephants, wild boar, water buffalo and three species of deer.

The Park has just three distinct types of flora - forest, shrub and grasslands. There is a substantial area of both low lying savanna grasslands called Thalawa, and mountainous grasslands called Pathana. Three rare types of Ayurvedic plants can be found growing in Gal Oya. The Park has three mountains within its boundaries namely Danigala, Nilgala and Ulpotha - the highest peak reaching 900 metres.

Encompassing four protected areas, Gal Oya is Sri Lanka's only National Park where it is possible to experience a Boat Safari. The vast Senanayake Samudra is dotted with many small islands which are home to an incredible diversity of bird species; including Sri Lanka's largest bird the Lesser Adjutant and the Red Faced Malkoha.

There are 150 of Sri Lanka's 430 recorded bird species resident here."Kurulu Dupatha" or Birds Island is home to a great number of birds nesting in the forest and in the rocky outcrops on higher ground.

A highlight here is the elephants that can be seen swimming from one island to another. This 'crossing' has to be observed very carefully as elephants are very vulnerable when they are swimming and can even drown if boats come too close.

Mahoora Wildlife Updates - Gal Oya

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© 2024, Eco Team - Sri Lanka

Resort Locations

Mahoora Tented Safari Camps,
Fairfield Garden,
Colombo 08,
Sri Lanka

Booking & Query

E. [email protected]
P. +94 (0)702228222

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