Location: North Central Province, 190 kilometres from Colombo
Average Rainfall: 1,500 – 2,000 mm
Between Habarana and Polonnaruwa are the scrub forests of the Minneriya National Park. A haven for sambar deer, toque macaques and leopards, the park is now a world renowned destination site. This is due to the fact that on the shores of Minneriya’s nearly 2000 year old man-made lake the world’s largest gathering of elephants takes place. This spectacular sight occurs within the boundaries of the Minneriya National Park during the dry season from July to October. With nearly three hundred elephants gathering every evening it is no surprise that Lonely Planet has ranked it at number 6 for being one of the world’s best wildlife spectacles. The ‘Gathering’ (as it has come to be known) is a result of the lack of waterholes during the drought. Unable to receive their daily intake of water the elephants make their way to the Minneriya tank making it an event not to be missed.