Habarana Sri Lanka
Habarana (Habarana) is a city in the Central part of Sri Lanka 170 km from Colombo, 25 kilometers from Dambulla from Sigiriya and 15 (see Habarane map of Sri Lanka).
The town is tiny and there is almost nothing travel, but for tourists the Food is important because it is a convenient transportation hub and the starting point for a visit to Dambulla, Sigiriya. In General, the city is located almost in the heart of the Cultural triangle of Sri Lanka, and so there is a convenient place to stay when moving between Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa and other cities of the triangle. Also this is the starting point for visits to the national parks of Minneriya National Park and Kaudulla National Park, and in the off-season (September, October, March, April) it is possible to observe the migration of herds of elephants between the parks absolutely free.
Entertainment for tourists here. You can go for a walk/elephant Safari through the surrounding jungle. The cost of walking an elephant from $ 20 per hour, but since the standard walk lasts about 3 hours, you need to be willing to pay 60 dollars for the tour. To find such tours through the hotels and guesthouses. Also, you can offer fishing in the lake, but it is not necessary to count on serious catch and adrenaline.
In Habarana and the surrounding area quite a lot of hotels where you can stay to hell out of here to go for exploring Sigiriya and Dambulla. Oddly enough, the hotels in Habarana are among the best in Sri Lanka, and there really are several luxury hotels at an affordable price.
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The hotels in Habarana on the map
How to get to Habarana
Habarana is located at the intersection of many bus routes, there is a railroad, so in order to get here, will not.
It's convenient to reach by train. Twice a day there are trains from Colombo to Trincomalee (daily) and the Colombo-Batticaloa (night). In duration 5 hours, cost 240 rupees. Twice a day go train from Polonnaruwa: in the way a little more than an hour, the value of 50 rupees. The schedule can be viewed here https://www.eservices.railway.gov.lk
On the buses is convenient to move short distances between the cities of the Cultural triangle:
- Anuradhapura – a bus every 30 minutes, journey 2 and a half hours, the cost of 100 rupees.
- Dambulla – every 30 minutes, 30 minutes, 30 rupees.
- Polonnaruwa – every 30 minutes, one hour, from 50 rupees.
There are also buses from Colombo, Kandy, Matara, Hatton (Adam's Peak) and Trincomalee.
Habarana attractions, what to see
Habarane Lake near the city, and the perimeter of the paved walking trail. It is most often rolled tourists during a short elephant Safari through the jungle, but to go this route you can walk. The road will take about an hour and a half. During the walk you will have the chance to see exotic animals, insects, and tropical plants. If you're lucky, will be able to see the elephants bathing, but if you buy a walk on an elephant, then elephants can fly right along with you, if you want.
Hours: around the clock
Entrance fee / ticket price: walk around the lake for free, walk the elephants from $ 30.
How to get there: the lake is close to town (lake on the map).
Minneriya national Park
Minneriya National Park is not as popular as the popular Yala or Udawalawe, however they are almost not inferior to them in variety of flora and fauna. The Park covers an area of 88.9 square kilometers, and includes a huge lake Minneriya. If you're lucky, during a trip in the Park you can see herds of elephants, including their bathing, as well as leopards, wild boars, deer, monkeys, bears. Around the lake is home to many colorful and exotic birds. The chances of seeing more creatures depend on the professionalism of the tour guide and driver, time spent in the Park, mode of transport, and your luck. Try to find the driver with this sports crossover and not an Indian Mahindra car, which is far to the Park to go and a lot to see fail.
The visit must be accompanied by a guide ("given" at the entrance) and on the SUV or truck. The driver of the SUV can be found at the entrance to the Park, but they are not always, so better to take care of this that's easy to do at hotels in Habarana or Polonnaruwa.
As for the question of whether to come here deliberately instead of the Park Yala or Udawalawe, we would not recommend this Park. Its worth a visit if you find yourself in this part of the country, and align his visit to Polonnaruwa, Anuradhapura, Sigiriya and Dambulla.
Hours: 06:00 – 18:00. The best season to visit is from may to September
Entrance fee / ticket price: the cost of attendance is the sum of the entrance fee ($15 adult, 8 – children 6-12 years); service fee with group/jeep $ 8; the fee for the entry of transport – 250 rupees (refer to the currency of Sri Lanka, the exchange rate). Plus you need to add the cost of renting a jeep, which can be found from 3500 to 5000 for 3 hours. In the end, I can rely on the value of $ 30 per person group of 6 people and up to $ 65 for a single visit.
How to get there: national Park is located a few kilometers from the Habarana and 30 kilometers from Polonnaruwa (Minneriya on the map). It's convenient to visit the Park of these cities, and to get there with beach resorts in one day without overnight stay is almost impossible. Therefore, it is best to come to Habarana or Polonnaruwa at the hotel to arrange a Safari early in the morning to go to the Park.
Kaudulla national Park
Kaudulla National Park – another national Park of Sri Lanka where you can see herds of elephants in the wild. As in Minneriya Park, here there is no holding back, no fences and fences, and elephants quietly move throughout the territory and beyond, migrating during the year from one Park to another. The diversity of animal life here is slightly inferior to Minneriya, but from October to March, when the elephants in Minneriya remains small, there are a lot of them. If you arrive in Polonnaruwa or Habarana in these months, it is better to choose to visit the Kaudulla national Park.
Hours: 06:00 – 18:00. The best season to visit – October to March
Entrance fee / ticket price: the cost of attendance is the sum of the entrance fee ($10 adult, 5 – children 6-12 years); service fee with group/jeep $ 8; the fee for entry of vehicles is 250 rupees. Plus you need to add the cost of renting a jeep, which can be found from 3500 to 5000 for 3 hours. In the end, I can rely on the value of $ 30 per person group of 6 people and up to 60 dollars for a single visit.
How to get there: national Park is located a few kilometers from the Habarana and 35 kilometers from Polonnaruwa (Kaudulla on the map). It's convenient to visit the Park of these cities, and to get there with beach resorts in one day without overnight stay is almost impossible. Therefore, it is best to come to Habarana or Polonnaruwa at the hotel to arrange a Safari early in the morning to go to the Park.
Nature reserve and the ruins were Ritigala
Ritigala ruins is the ruins of the ancient Buddhist monastery, Dating to the first century BC. Temple hidden in the dense forests of the reserve was Ritigala on the mountain Ritigala. This place is associated with many legends. One of the most famous says that it was here that the monkey God Hanuman jumped across the Strait to India to tell Rama about God that his beloved SITA is held by the king of Lanka.
For tourists much more interesting to see what today remains of the once majestic and sacred places. We can say that this is one of the most underrated attractions of Sri Lanka. During the visit, note the carved stone urinals, which are believed to be reflective of the excesses that were opposed by the monks of the monastery. In addition to the very interesting ruins and nature reserve: here you can see rare animals and birds, and unlike the National parks, free entrance.
Working time: from 07:00 to 18:00
Entrance fee / ticket price: 270 lakh
How to get: have Ritigala is 40 kilometres from Anuradhapura and 14 from Habarana (was Ritigala on the map). You can get here by tuk-tuk for 1500 rupees (in both parties waiting), and then walk about 2 kilometers through the jungle on the paved road up. The ascent, the power of each. Guide for jungle trekking are not required, road is very well marked.