My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our two night stay with Leopard Safaris. From the outset our guides Sam (Sameera) and Piyush were eager and enthusiastic to show us all that Wilpattu had to offer and were willing to spend as much time as we wanted exploring the Park. All the staff were very pleasant and helpful, the meals were delicious and well presented, the accommodation was comfortable with attention to every little detail. I enjoyed my cooking lesson and will be trying it out now that I am back in Canada. The tree planting at the end of our stay was a very nice touch as it is part of Leopard Safaris attempt to reclamate what was previously a farm.
This is not an hotel, It is a tented camp like those in East and Southern Africa. There is solar powered electricity and flush toilets but the showers are outside the tent in a separate enclosure with a bucket shower arrangement. We found the accommodation to be comfortable and everything we expected having been on multiple safaris in Africa.
Wilpattu was not like Yala - it was not crowded with hundreds of off road safari vehicles all vying for position at a sighting.
The leopard sighting was a highlight for me and we had good sightings of a variety of raptors and other birds. Missed out on the sloth bear - maybe next time!
We stayed for one night in a tent and went out on two safaris, one on the afternoon that we arrived and another at 6am the next morning.
It was a great experience. We didn't see any elephants but were lucky that we had seen two huge herds at Kaudulla before coming to Wilpattu. What we did see were a large variety of other animals and birds, including 1 leopard, which was special.
Danu and his team looked after us really well. Every meal was fantastic. We were the only ones staying at the time and because they knew it was our anniversary they set up a special place for our evening meal and made a cake with "happy anniversary" on it - a very lovely touch!
We stayed for 4 nights at Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris at Wilpattu.
Apart from the comfortable camp, delicious Sri Lankan food, wonderful company, attentive staff, comfortable tent, the main star of the show is of course the wildlife of Wilpattu. Pansi and Sudesh at Leopard Safaris whose extensive knowledge of Sri Lankan wildlife and of Wilpattu made them the perfect guides and also fantastic company. They both clearly share our passion for and love of wildlife and the patience required to search for and observe the ‘small stuff’ as well as the ‘big stuff’.
We were lucky enough to have several wonderful leopard sightings, but also much more: Crocs, hares, snakes, the beautiful star tortoise, turtles, mongooses, wild boar, deer and some fantastic birdlife including a Brown Wood Owl, Brown Fish Owl and a pair of rare rufous woodpeckers demolishing an ants nest!
If you are truly passionate about observing wildlife with the best guides, choose Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris.
PS. Have the camp Paradise Flycatchers hatched their eggs yet?
We loved every minute we spent at Noel Rodrigo's Safari: the game drive with Dhanush, so keen to show and explain the wildlife at Wilpattu. the dinners at the table under the stars. The food was amazing. WE highly recommend
My 4-day stay at Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris near Wilpattu National Park in late July was the highlight of a two-week wildlife-focused trip Sri Lanka. My visit in the care of Dhanu and team was the most professional safari experience I’ve witnessed outside of Southern Africa. Dhanu was incredibly knowledgeable about all of the wildlife within Wilpattu (vastly surpassing the inexperienced amateur drivers I encountered at the big all-inclusive resorts near Yala) and he worked collaboratively with the National Park employees that joined us on our game drives. Dhanu also guided us in how to be first into the park so we were more likely to see animals before they’d been scared off by other vehicles. He excelled in locating sloth bears and tracking them to watering holes, while he also was an expert at helping me take the best possible photos of the wildlife we encountered. We even were lucky enough to see a leopard by a watering hole!
The camp was immaculate and I appreciated their sincere efforts to design a fairly luxurious set up that was sympathetic to the surrounding environment. The staff could not have been more helpful and accommodating, and despite a somewhat rugged setting, they served us the best food that we had during the entire vacation. Dhanu even showed us how to mix our curries and dishes for the most delicious fusion of spices.
If you are an animal lover used to more authentic wildlife encounters in other countries, Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris has to be at the top of your list because it is one of the very few operators in Sri Lanka that truly caters to a traveler looking for natural wildlife observation in a less harried environment.