If you’re seeking the wildest way to experience Sri Lanka’s National Parks, then a tented camp is a must. For those unsure whether they can forgo the creature comforts of a hotel, rest assured that this is very much glamping. The palatial tents, though undoubtedly luxurious, still offer a level of exhilaration that a hotel room cannot: air conditioned with fine fittings and full bathrooms, but with the atmosphere of being very close to nature. The night time sounds of the wilderness really set the imagination to work. Though it comes with a higher price tag, the experience is unparalleled.
Flaming torches light the way to your dinner table under the stars, where the food is worthy of any top-class restaurant. Knowledgeable guides will regale you with stories of the wild that will have your ears pricking to every rustle, crack and shuffle in the bush. Early morning and afternoon forays into the National Park, with your guide’s keen eyes to lead the way, mean that a leopard sighting may well be on the cards.
Both camps in Wilpattu and Yala are located in the buffer zone just outside of the park, which means that your transfer time to the gates is considerably less.
Two daily safaris included
Off grid, no WiFi
Plunge pool suites
Leopard Trails was amazing. The kids were so happy that we saw leopards on both game drives, and the guides were brilliant.
Discover what to expect from staying at Leopard Trails Tented Camps
Leopard Trails is one of the best safari operators in Sri Lanka, and we love to recommend a couple of nights with them wherever possible, either in Yala or Wilpattu. Romantic, adventurous, exhilarating and delicious: this is an experience to savour. The number of guests at any given time is small and it can almost feel like a private camp. It is great for all, but for families especially, it’s a real crowd pleaser. The attention to detail is outstanding and the staff make a personal effort to ensure that everyone is having a good time.
There are two included safaris each day, one very early in the morning (in the darkness) and one much later. If you choose to go on both, then that’s a big chunk of your day spoken for, and in extraordinary fashion. In your downtime, relax in your tent, in the common areas, or (if you’ve booked a tent which has one) in you’re private plunge pool. Younger guests are automatically enrolled in the ‘young ranger’ program, where they get the chance to learn a little more about the wildlife, tracking, walkie-talkie etiquette and even getting the jeeps ready for departure.
Leopard Trails has a strong commitment to responsible tourism. As part of their strategy to benefit local people, they do not have their own vehicles but rather employ local drivers and their jeeps as a package. Theyalso make great efforts to constrain water use. Perhaps more than anything, it’s the guides’ very clear compassion towards Sri Lankan wildlife and its future that makes the biggest impact.
Combine the island’s top wildlife crowd pleasers with some magnificent hidden gems and cultural highlights before spending some time on the beach.