Animal magic without the safari price tag!

img_1319

We’ve packed a huge amount into our 2 weeks in Sri Lanka but we didn’t manage to book a safari tour around one of its national parks. We needn’t have worried; we encountered a huge variety of wildlife just going about our daily business!

There was the troop of monkeys foraging for scraps on the mountain road out of Ella; the water buffalo grazing roadside; peacocks presenting their vivid plumage in the back garden of our Air BnB, iguanas slipping through front gardens; a herd of elephants in the distance as we drove alongside Uda Walawe National Park and, most bewitchingly of all, dozens of baby turtles hatching on Weligama beach at full moon, confused by the glimmering beach bar lights and eager smart phone flashes as they broke for the freedom of the sea.

One organised tour we were keen to do was whale watching from Mirissa. Famous for blue whales just off shore, dozens of companies claim their eco credentials to attract ethically conscious westerners.

fullsizeoutput_2a5

In truth, the dozen or so boats chasing each sighting felt like a homogenous entity, speeding towards the first sight of a fin or tail.

fullsizeoutput_2aa

We were amazed to see whales in the wild, but the whole experience left a slightly bitter taste in everyone’s mouth. We were just glad not to be on the boat pumping out acrid black smoke!

fullsizeoutput_2ac

Lesson: do your research but don’t expect an environmentally conscious trip, each company appears to work in the same way.

A Kenyan safari has always been on the list for me, but with such a dazzling variety of wildlife quite literally on your doorstep here, Sri Lanka must be hard to beat.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s