More than 10% of Sri Lanka's total land area is designated for wildlife and two of Sri Lanka's largest National Parks, Yala East and Lahugala, are less than 40 minutes jeep ride from Arugam Bay.
The Kumana Bird Sanctuary is a nationally important wetland reserve, only an hours jeep ride from Arugam Bay.
Closer to Arugam Bay is the Pottuvil Lagoon Ecotour, a local mangroves conservation and wildlife management initiative, for which Arugam Bay Surf Resort is the official Booking Centre.
Ancient temples and cave dwelling hermitages testify to the historical co-existence of people and wildlife in the jungles around Arugam Bay : a tradition still maintained today.
Yala East joins with Yala West to form the second largest National Park in Sri Lanka. Yala is most famous for its leopards.
You can also see rare sloth bears, pangolins, jackals, wild boar and
several varieties of deer and elephants in the Yala East.
The park is also rich in bird life and reptiles; large monitor lizards are commonly seen in the park.
Lahugala National Park is home to several large herds of elephants.
During the dry season these herds can be seen early at dawn and
dusk drinking and bathing in one or more of the large watering holes
that are found in Lahugalla National Park.
Kumana Bird Sanctuary is nationally and internationally recognised
as an important wetland habitat for local and migratory wading birds.
Here you can flocks of painted stork, spot billed pelican, white ibis
and flamingo and a multitude of over bird life.