There is a long tradition of conservation rooted in its ancient Buddhist traditions which teaches kindness to all living creatures. Indeed Sri Lanka has an abundance of exotic and varied wildlife - whether it be on land or in water.
Of the eighty-six species of mammal that are found on the island, the world's two largest mammals are found here and the pride of place goes to Elephants and Whales. Close encounters with theses stunning mammals can be found in the National parks of Gal Oya, Uda Walawe, Wilpattu and Yala , together with Leopards, Sloth Bears, Wild Boars, Porcupines, Ant-eaters, various species of Monkey and Deer to mention but a few. Mirissa close to Galle in the south west coast of the island is the habitat of the Whales and excursions are planned to admire theses beauties with the least dame to nature.
Plentiful and exotic birdlife that lives on the island makes Sri Lanka a nature lover's paradise - especially for ornithologists. Brilliantly plumaged Jungle Fowl, the striking red faced Malkoha and the shy brown capped Babbler can be found throughout the island in forests and sanctuaries. The Ceylon Whistling Thrush and the yellow-eared Bilbul are restricted to the Hill Country. An assortment of migratory birds like pelicans, flamingoes, stork, heron, spoonbill have made this stunning island a seasonal home and can be seen in the sanctuaries at Wirawila, Kalametiya and Bundala. Seventy five species of reptile are found on the island of which the largest is the Marsh Crocodile. Two Hundred and Forty two identified species of Butterfly dot the beauty of the landscape.
To the botanist Sri Lanka is the land of plenty. Many varieties of trees, both tropical and temperate, thrive in the diversified climate and from March to May numerous flowering trees burst into bloom. Three excellent botanical gardens - at Peradeniya, Hakgala and Gampaha offer fascinating collections of tropical and sub-tropical flora making the isle of Sri Lanka a stunning destination.