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Elephants

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Elephants in Sri LankaMost sought-after animal in Sri Lankan wildlife is elephant. In a better way it can be said that the beast is most popular in all Sri Lankan animals for it can also be domesticated. Ideal destinations for finding the elephants are Udawalawe National Park, Yala Elephant Sanctuary, Gal Oya National Park and Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. In Habarana you can see elephant herds criss-crossing the public herds.

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According to a recent data number of elephants in Sri Lanka is around 2000 of which approxiamte 500 are domesticated. At the start of the century there were around 36000 elephants in the country but their numbers declined due to poaching. However the government is now conserving them.

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is among the most popular destinations in Sri Lanka. Orphaned or herdless elephants are kept and cared here. The ideal time to enjoy your trip is feeding time. You would get to see the baby elephants being bottle-fed. You would also the elephants bathing in the river and calf elephants splashing about in water. Pinnnawala is 13km off Kegalle Town which itself is 77km from Colombo.

Yala National Park
If you desire to see the elephants in wild, Yala National Park would be the ideal place. It has the largest number of wild elephant in Sri Lanka. There are numerous streams and water holes in the park. Dense jungle has variety of vegetation and the animals have no dearth of food and water. You can tour the national park on jeep safari or elephant safari.

Association with Festivals
Elephant is the most venerated animal in Sri Lanka. It is taken out in procession on several occasions with fanfare. Paritcularly in Kandy, on the occasion of Esala Perahera, elephant processions are taken out at night or evening and people dress themselves in traditional way. It is famous as one of the world's grandest and most spectacular street parades. The colorful pageant incorporates all aspects of local culture.

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