Witness the largest Sri Lankan wild elephant gathering
The Hurulu Forest Reserve is a typical dry-zone dry evergreen forest situated in Habarana, Sri Lanka. This forest reserve is renowned for its large elephant gatherings during the dry season when they migrate between the forests. Each year during the period between October to November due to heavy rains and lakes getting filled up large groups of elephants migrate from Minneriya National Park to Kaudulla National Park Then the elephants move towards Hurulu Eco Park during the month of December to January. These large migratory mammals can be spotted amongst the tall grasses and scrub jungle vegetation.
The Hurulu Forest Reserve was designated as a biosphere reserve in 1977. Ritigala Strict Nature Reserve, Minneriya-Girithale and Mahaweli Flood Plains Nature Reserves are among the protected areas situated around the Hurulu Forest Reserve.
This thriving ecosystem is a fundamental habitat for the Sri Lankan elephant. It is also abundant with a variety of creatures including the jackal, spotted deer, tufted gray langur and toque macaque. Some of the birds that can be spotted at Hurulu Forest Reserve include the Indian roller, Sri Lanka jungle fowl, Indian peafowl, blue-tailed and green bee-eaters. Predatory birds such as changeable hawk eagle, crested serpent eagle and shikra can also be seen at the Hurulu Forest Reserve.
An average temperature of 27.3 °C is felt throughout the year and the area receives 1600 mm of rainfall annually. The dry season persists during the months of April / May and September and is generally for three to six months.
The best time to go on a safari is early morning. The ride on the jeep can be very bumpy and long but it is a one of kind experience where you get to ride through the jungle. Be prepared to spend around two to three hours to enjoy the stunning scenery of the majestic elephants on the move.