Sinharaja is Sri Lanka’s top rainforest reserve!
Sinharaja forest is Sri Lanka’s top rainforest reserve located 60 km south of Ratnapura. The name translates to Lion King. The park is over 18,000 hectares of ancient rainforest that once covered a larger part of Sri Lanka.
In recognition of the importance of the rainforest and its contribution to the island’s ecosystem, UNESCO declared it a World Heritage in 1988.
There are many endemic species of butterflies, birds, reptiles and amphibians in the forest as well as mammals such as civets, mongooses, deer and monkeys. But the Sri Lankan lion is nowhere to be seen.
The forest is renowned for its spectacular flora with trees that can tower over 50 metres. But Sinharaja was not always a luxuriant place. In the early 70s, loggers had installed a wood mill to log native hardwood. Only when conservationists raised warning bells did the authorities decide to put an end to the activity. Today, the scars of the activity have almost disappeared.
If you wade in the water here, be aware that leeches are out there everywhere.
The best time to visit Sinharaja is between December and April.
For more information: www.sinharaja.4t.com