We booked a 7h tour in March with Yala Kings Safari. The communication via WhatsApp was straightforward and the owner was very kind and helpful (as well for information about the bus transfers).
The day was great, our driver Tharanga had very fast eyes and was able to spot the animals all over. We got very lucky and could see a big Leopard, an elephant which came very close to the car, crocodiles and even few Jackals.
We strongly recommend this tour operator!
We did a Full Day Private Safari with Tharanga, our 27 years of experience driver. He picked us up at 4:30 at the hotel so we can be among the very first to enter the park. He was very knowledgeable of the park and the wildlife in general. His strategy was very different from all the other "young" drivers driving very fast in the park with little respect for you comfort or the wildlife. Instead he drives slowly and brings you to the less busy part of the park where you have greater chances of seeing leopards.
We saw loads of crocodiles, elephants (and baby elephants), dears, monkeys, eagles and tons of birds, but the main attraction at yala is to see one of the 35 leopards. We had to wait until late in the day to see our first one, and ended up seeing 5, which according to our guide is being "very very very very very lucky". There is an enormous part of luck in seeing a leopard, and unfortunately there is no magic spot to see them, so I'd say the longer you stay in the park the more chance you have to see one.
We'd definitely recommend or do it again.
ps: we did a private tour which I think is a lot better as you have direct access to the guide and its explanations on the wildlife.
Our early morning safari was a great experience. The Park with his beautiful sceneries is impressive. We saw a lot of animals and got some nice pictures. Our driver Tharanga was very good and has amazing skills in spotting animals. Also he was extremely polite, friendly and nice: We felt absolutely welcomed by him. He really loves his job and enjoys what he is doing. Also the whole process of email contact, booking, pick-up at time etc. was very well organized. We had a great day and we will definitely come back!
An amazing day of safari!! Our guide Tharanga was brilliant.. with 27 years experience doing this, he has eyes like a hawk...he was brilliant at spotting animals, reptiles and birds. Lots of little facts about the wildlife and landscape.
We had an amazing 10 mins with a leopard with no other trucks around, there are only around 30 in the park so it’s rare to see one and be able to witness its majesty was a true highlight.
Tharangu took more obscure routes away from the others and at a slower pace definitely paid off and made for a more pleasant time without panic. Oh we also saw a whole elephant family up close too.
The lunch st the beach 12-2 was a well needed reprieve from the intense sun although no tables and chairs as website suggests....but didn’t detract from a great experience.
An amazing day of safari!! Our guide Tharanga was brilliant...at first we were worried he was a slower driver than everyone else but don’t be fooled, with 27 years experience doing this, he has eyes like a hawk...slow and steady definitely wins the race (and saves your back!). We had an amazing 10 mins with a leopard with no other trucks around. Taking more obscure routes away from the others and at a slower pace definitely paid off and made for a more pleasant time without panic. Oh we also saw a whole elephant family up close and the lunch was yum too (although no tables and chairs as website suggests...or breakfast...but that was ok)