Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris
Yala, Sri Lanka
Noel Rodrigo's Leopard Safari specializes in mobile camping safaris in Sri Lanka's two major National Parks - Yala, Wilpathu, as well as the National Heritage area of the Knuckles. Embark on an adventurous safari into the wilderness or relax in a hammock.
At a Glance
Noel Rodrigo, a wildlife specialist whose knowledge about the Sri Lankan leopard - or kotiya as it is locally known - is second to none
Some of the best meals you find in Sri Lanka including BBQs and snacks, are served up in style along with imported wine for dinner
Customized Toyota Land Cruisers are used for the game drives which are exclusive and far more comfortable than those in use by the majority of other operators.
Vehicles are specially fitted with camera support points for photographers
A wildlife specialist will accompany guests on the game drives and is ever willing to share his knowledge and experiences
Tents are comfortable yet basic, and each tent has its own bathroom facilities.
If you've got an old fashioned 'proper' SLR like me, don't forget to take extra film (again like me..)!!! Huge mistake!Scott Dunn team
In the past 1.5 years Noel has not failed to spot a leopard for any of his guests.Scott Dunn team
Trust Noel to make the best arrangements for you, dont forget to take some expert photography trips from him.Scott Dunn team
Check out the new Luxury Tent. It's the perfect way to get the best experience without having to compromise on your comfort!Jessica Cator
It is worth being aware that given the natural jungle surroundings, there can be quite a few insects around the camp!Lucy Bailey
Meet our specialists
Call us on (858) 523-9000 to start planning your vacation to Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris or take a look at our itineraries to South Coast
This camping safari is the vision of its owner Noel Rodrigo, a wildlife specialist whose knowledge about the Sri Lankan leopard, or kotiya as it is locally known, is second to none. This camping package includes accommodation, all meals, BBQ and snacks, alcoholic beverages, two game drives per day accompanied by a wildlife specialist and entrance fees to the National Parks.
Proper safari tents have been imported from South Africa and are of a very high quality. Accommodation can be in single, twin, double or family tents, furnished with comfortable beds and fresh linen.
The camp at Yala is semi-permanent and so offers a few more comforts compared to the fully mobile camps at Wilpathu and the Knuckles.
In Yala, the tents feature blade-less fans, proper flushing toilets and the option of hot water for the showers. There is also a new Luxury Tent, which has a four-poster bed, furniture crafted from reclaimed wood, indoor bathroom and air-conditioning.
In Wilpathu and the Knuckles, there are no fans in the tents and there are camping loos and manually filled bucket showers, so guests should expect a much more basic experience.
Meals, including BBQs and snacks, are prepared at the well-equipped trailer kitchen and served up in style along with imported wine for dinner. Chilled local beer and spirits are also on offer. The semi-permanent base at Yala also means the food served here can have more variety and complexity versus the mobile kitchens.
A customized Toyota Land Cruiser is used for the game drives. These vehicles can handle every kind of terrain, give an excellent view, and are specially fitted with camera support points for photographers. All of the drivers accompanying guests on safaris are wildlife specialists, ever willing to share their knowledge and experiences.
Yala with a total protected area of 500 square miles, is one of the best places to see a wide variety of Sri Lankan wildlife because of its scrub plains, lagoons and rocky sections. Boasting one of the world's densest leopard populations, Yala is also inhabited by herds of elephants, sloth bear, sambar deer, spotted deer, wild boar, crocodiles, monkeys and buffalos.
Wilpathu with its unique landscape consisting of several freshwater lakes or villus attracts numerous species of birds and other animals including iguanas, elephants and leopards.
Due to the changing level of water in the lakes, the camp in Wilpathu moves around to different locations. This does mean that it can sometimes take longer to get to areas of interest in the park, depending on where the camp is based.
Knuckles, in the hill country near Kandy, is home to many endemic Flora and Fauna species which can only be found in the Sri Lankan mountains. Leopard Safaris offers exciting mountain activities, such as night safaris, mountain climbing, hiking, swimming under waterfalls, tea plucking, and tree planting.
Accommodation is in single, twin, double or family sized canvas tents, furnished with comfortable beds and fresh linen. In Yala, the bathrooms have proper flushing loos and hot water for showers available on request. The tents in Yala also offer blade-less fans to help guests keep cool.
There is also a new Luxury Tent in Yala which has a four-poster bed, indoor bathroom and air-conditioning.
In Wilpathu and the Knuckles the bathrooms have camping loos and manually filled bucket showers.
Children are welcome to come and stay at Leopard Safaris and they'll love the game drives.
Location & Directions
Yala, Sri Lanka
The Camp moves between Sri Lanka's three major National Parks: Yala National Park, Knuckles Mountain Range and Wilpathu National Park.
When to go
From May to August the Yala monsoon brings rain to the island’s southwestern half. The southwest has the highest rainfall – up to 4000mm a year. There is also an inter-monsoonal period in October and November when rain can occur in many parts of the island. Colombo and the low-lying coastal regions have an average temperature of 27°C. The sea stays at around 27°C all year. Climatically speaking, the driest (and best) seasons in Sri Lanka are from December to March for the west and south coasts.