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Sinharaja Forest Reserve

UNESCO World Heritage Site near Colombo

Sri Lanka’s last primary tropical rainforest, the Sinharaja Forest Reserve, is located in the wet zone near the southwest lowlands of the island. Specifically, it is located near Sabaragamuwa, 100km from Colombo.

It is of great international significance, as it was added onto the list of World Heritage Sites by UNESCO in 1988. The importance of this reserve is understood by the fact that it houses more than 60% of Sri Lanka’s typical species of trees. Moreover, the wildlife found here alone comprises 50% of Sri Lanka’s species.

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Sinharaja Forest Reserve Background

Serially aligned alleys and ridges constitute most of the undulating narrow striped terrain of the area. The lower slopes and the valley region house a dipterocarpus forest, while scrub and secondary forests are found in the higher altitudes, but which also house tea and rubber plantations.

The entire region is a perfect place for Nature lovers. Owing to the dense vegetation and thick tree cover, spotting wildlife may be a bit difficult, with the exception of elephants and cheetahs.

Natural Habitat

The virgin rainforest is also famous for its extensive bird species. In fact, the Sinharaja Forest Reserve is more popular as a bird-watching zone.

Some of the rarest, colourful and most wonderful rainforest bird species, like the Orange-billed Babbler, Green-billed Coucal, Greater Racket-tailed Drongo and the Sri Lankan Blue Magpie can easily be seen here, often observed in flocks across the reserve. All these, and much more, will make your trip memorable.

  • Location: Southwest lowland wet zone of Sri Lanka, 100km from Colombo
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