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Number of Reviews: 33 Overall score: *****
Leopard in Yala National Park
***** Written
Whales & Leopards of Sri Lanka (2016)

whales and leopards of Sri Lanka

5
This trip really did tick all the boxes for me the standard of hotels was excellent especially Cinnamon Wild in Yalla. We were a small group, so our transport was a luxury people carrier, and our driver was great. The six safari's in Yalla were amazing and we saw just about everything this National Park has to offer. The small fast boat used for our whale watching trips proved to be very successful as well as a lot of fun.
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Leopard in Yala National Park
***** Written
Whales & Leopards of Sri Lanka (2016)

Whales & Leopards

5
Be prepared for a thrilling and exciting abundance of wildlife. From birds that look like flying paint charts such is the vibrant colour of their plumage. From small Bee eaters to Fish Eagles, Fill your viewfinder with a Hobby sitting in a nearby tree. What more could you ask for? Pull up by one of the many lakes, witness King Fishers diving for breakfast. Look for the beady eyes of a Crocodile partly submerged, waiting to strike. Or one just sunbathing with its mouth wide open. Mongoose running along the trails, Monitors running, walking, climbing trees. The entertainment is endless.
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Leopard in Yala National Park
***** Written
Whales & Leopards of Sri Lanka (2016)

Whales and Leopards of Sri Lanka

5
What a beautiful country! Very clean and organized, compared to India. We saw plenty of blue whales, the largest mammals on the planet, and had 7 leopard sightings. A great experience.
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Leopard in Yala National Park
***** Written
Whales & Leopards of Sri Lanka (2016)

Sri Lanka - Leopards and Blue Whales

2
December, particularly over Xmas, is not the time to do this trip. It's early in the season for the blue whales, but more importantly, it's the rainy season in Yale - something not evident from the trip notes. We had pretty reasonable whale viewing - a total of 3 or 4 blue whales over the 3 boat trips; plus a couple of Brydes whales and the dolphins. Yale is very very crowded with jeeps and there is very little etiquette amongst the drivers. If there's room to get closer to the subject another jeep will get in there, regardless of whether people are taking photos. Chaos would be a charitable description of the scene when a sloth bear went for a walk. We were unlucky with the weather and the leopard viewing, which is no one's fault, - but a 30 mins queue in a column of jeeps for a short glimpse of a distant leopard is not ideal. (And there's no chance to turn round, even if you wanted to get out of that queue!) May be a much better trip in late Feb / March?
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Exodus Response

Thank you for your feedback on your holiday in Sri Lanka. We were disappointed to hear that the weather was poor for much of the trip as this no doubt affected your overall enjoyment of the itinerary. Unfortunately Sri Lanka had much higher rainfall than usual this December which impacted many of the regions visited. We have raised your concerns regarding overcrowding in Yala National Park with our local operator and will review whether the Christmas period is a good time of year to operate this trip. There is a huge increase in domestic tourism over the holiday period which I believe was a contributing factor to the overcrowding in Yala. We use a high standard of hotel in Yala in order to be located close to the park entrance which makes for easier access to the park, and I do feel that this is a good selling point of the trip rather than reducing the hotel quality and price, as this would impact on the logistics of the holiday. I hope this answers some of your concerns and appreciate your feedback on the holiday as this helps us to make improvements to the itinerary. Simon Clifford, Trip Manager
Leopard in Yala National Park
***** Written
Whales & Leopards of Sri Lanka (2016)

November whale & leopard spotting

3
As it says in the title - you see whales and leopards in Sri Lanka! Local arrangements are a bit mixed - the Yala hotel is excellent but the behaviour of the park drivers degrades the experience.
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Leopard in Yala National Park
***** Written
Whales & Leopards of Sri Lanka (2016)

Fantastic Leopard and Whale sightings

3
It's called Whales and Leopards and it did exactly what it said on the tin! We saw Blue Whales on all our boat trips and 8 Leopard sightings across 6 game drives. However, there are issues with the organisation on this trip which need improving (this is the reason for the lower star rating).
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Exodus Response

We are delighted that Michelle had such good whale and leopard sightings, but it is a shame that some issues with organisation and guiding took the shine off an otherwise great trip. At the end of the 2014 spring season, we reviewed client feedback and it became clear that some of the leaders had not been as well received as we would have hoped. We have therefore taken the decision to operate all future departures of this trip with a very experienced local partner with whom we have successfully been working for over ten years. We are confident that the 2013 award winning Sri Lankan leader team will prove to be as popular on this wildlife trip as they have been on our discover tours.

Katherine Tory - Product Manager for Sri Lanka
Leopard in Yala National Park
***** Written
Whales & Leopards of Sri Lanka (2016)

WHALES AND LEOPARDS OF SRI LANKA

4
2nd trip with Exodus and same attention to detail. Tour leader ensuring itinerary delivered. Quality accommodation and good food. Group very mixed but easy going. Early starts ensured oportunities to see whales and leopards maximised, and we were not disappointed, however little time to enjoy facilities, especially in Yala. Sightings of elephants were an unexpected bonus. Our tour leader was determined to ensure we experienced as much of Sri Lanks as was possible in the time available, teaching us the philosophy behind Buddism en route.
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