Gal Oya National Park
Gal Oya is an alluring patch of wilderness in the heart of Sri Lanka. Located to the east of the Hill Country and to the west of coastal areas Ampara and Arugam Bay, this largely over-looked national park is comprised mainly of deep evergreen forest, interspersed with patches of savanna and scrub. The park was established in 1954 to protect the catchment area of the 'Senanayake Samudra' Reservoir, and has been under the care of the department of Wildlife Conservation since 1965. The 25,900 hectare park has about 32 species of mammals including common langur, endemic toque macaque, leopard, sloth bear, elephant, wild boar, water buffalo and 3 species of deer. For birding enthusiasts, approximately 150 of Sri Lanka 's 430 species of birds have been observed in the region. Due to the largely dense forest coverage wildlife opportunities are not quite as commonplace as other parks, but on the flipside visitor numbers are very low. Overall the largely pristine Gal Oya offers one of the most peaceful and beautiful nature reserves on the island.