Being a tropical paradise with abundant flora and fauna found all over the island, Sri Lanka has a lot to offer when it comes to observing wildlife. There are numerous forest reserves and jungles in almost every district of the country, varying from dry zone shrub forests to wet zone rainforests. But what about man-made zoos where people can observe animals? Ridiyagama Safari Park is the first-ever of its kind in Sri Lanka providing the space and freedom for the animals to roam freely amongst it own kind, but protected from other predatory species.
Ridiyagama Safari Park is located only an hours’ drive away from Tangalle. There are three different routes you can take to Ridiyagama Safari Park from Tangalle, the shortest route being just 47km. This route is laid through another major Southern coastal town of Sri Lanka, Ambalantota. It is fairly easy to find after taking a right turn from Ambalantota, as it is one of the most famous tourist attractions in the Southern Sri Lanka.
Ridiyagama Safari Park is spread over 500 acres of land and is home to both carnivorous and herbivorous animals alike. It is a large area of land where animals get to roam free, both mammals and birds, and visitors get to travel in protected vehicles to observe animals in their natural habitats.
The 500 acres of land is divided into six zones, with four of them occupying carnivorous animals, while the other two zones are the home to herbivorous animals. Carnivores that can be seen in Ridiyagama Safari Park are mainly lions, tigers and leopards. The African Lion zone is 35 acres in size, while the Sri Lankan Elephant zone is 54 acres in size.
The park provides an automated guide when you travel from zone to zone in the park. These are offered in park-provided buses, which you can hire at the entrance. If you remember the automated guide system in the first Jurassic Park movie, this is just like that! But it describes the mammals and birds of the current ecosystem, and not the prehistoric dinosaurs!
Ridiyagama is a must-visit on your trip to Southern Sri Lanka to see wild life being cared for in a stress-free environment. Despite being open to visitors since 2016, some areas of the park are still being constructed, so there will be something new to witness every time you choose to visit it. There is a small entrance fee to enter the park, only Rs. 350 for both locals and Rs. 3,000 for foreign visitors. There are buses you will take to go into the Safari Park at the entrance, or you can choose to have a full-on safari in a 4-wheel jeep as one would find in National Parks such as Udawalawe and Yala in Sri Lanka. The park is open every day from 8.30 AM to 4.30 PM, so a visit to Ridiyagama Safari Park can be fitted easily into your schedule.
Ridiyagama Safari Park is the perfect family getaway during your stay at Sooriya Resort and Spa, Rekawa. It will be a memorable experience for your kids and be educational, entertaining, and thrilling at the same time.