Lion in the flag
this is the very first thing you will notice when you thinking of Holiday to Sri Lanka . As the legend goes on when the first King of Sri Lanka arrived to the island back in 486 BC ,he carried a flag with a lion on it ,a son of Indian King singhabahu (mean lion) and the his clan -the people were called clan of sinha (lions). The story of Sri Lanka begin with the arrival of King Vijaya and Sinhalese(lions) are the people.
Nowadays Sri Lankan flag is a representation of their majority Sinhalese people with the sword holding lion in the middle while is orange and green strips represent the minority Srilankan Tamil Hindus and Sri Lankan Muslims. the yellow borders represent the unity of the island including the minority burgers( Portuguese descendants) ),Malays and so on.
the four leaves ( from the Bo tree ) is the representation of four pillars of Buddhism,the fundamental of the religion (the countries main religion).
there haven’t been much proper research done on this subject whether actually lion were in the island other than Dr daraniyagala research where he suggest there have been some evident of Sri Lankan lion, a sub species of pre -historic endemic Sri Lankan lion which became extinct 37 000 years BC before the modern humans.
So only place you will get to see a actual lions in Sri Lanka is at the national zoological garden in Dehiwala Colombo ,but they are actually African imported lions .
you will also notice some lions while sipping down your favourite Sri Lankan beer while watching sun go down in Sri Lanka .
Sri Lankan local brew by the name of lion beer
of course you will be able to see this giant Asian elephants anywhere you go in the island ,from wild to tamed temple elephants which has taken a huge part in traditional Sri Lankan culture.
There are of course elephant orphanages (pinnawala elephant orphanage ) in Sri Lanka .
Ever disappearing habitat for the elephants in the island with deforestation has increased the on going elephant -human conflict with all modern developments in the island.
It is estimated to have there are around 4000 wild elephants in the jungle of Sri Lanka .
There are lot of wild parks in Sri Lanka where you can observe these animals in their natural habitat .the famous Sri Lankan wild parks to observe these animals are yala ,willpathu ,kaudulla,udawalawe,minneryia.
on your Sri Lankan road trips , you may come across an occasional sighting of these animals as well .they often come to near to the main roads by the border villages to the jungles of Sri Lanka .villages like Sigiriya,habarana ,polonnaruwa are popular of these sighting of these animals.
Sri Lankan Leopards (Kotiya)
Sri Lankan leopards (Kotiya)are endemic sub species native to Sri Lanka which is the smallest of Big cats. Seen them in the wild sometimes considered to be depends on your luck since they hardly come to the open spaces during the day lights. Yala and willpathu is the famous national park of Sri Lanka where you may get an opportunity to see them in action.it is roughly about 700 hundreds to 900 leopards in the wild since no proper study has done on these animals.
Srilanka sloth bear
sighting of these animals is very rare while willpathu national park ( north west of the island ) seems like a good spot for spotting the animal nowadays. The omnivorous animal is feeding on nuts ,wild berries ,roots ,insects to meat .it is considered they rarely kills other animals as a prey.
Sri Lanka blue whale
The world largest mamal ,Sri lanka is the home largest concentration of pigmy sperm blue whales . Mirrissa the beach village in the southern of the island to trincomalee of north east and the kalpitiya north west of the island are the popular beach spits to see these ocean creatures including the Sri Lankan dolphins.
You may actually wonder whether is it a elephant island or a monkey island ,apart from the major cities and your beach resorts monkeys are almost everywhere to the inner of the island.
Purple face leaf monkeys ,grey langurs,toque macaques are the main three type of species identified in the island , before taking any pictures of them let them familiarise with your presence ,number one rule is -do not look directly at them since they see it as a threat .
As one of the world top biodiversity hot spot of the world ,Sri Lanka is home to many endemic species ,including flora and fauna . some of the animals can be seen only by participating on a Sri Lanka wildlife tour.you also may come across hundreds of birds varieties to other mammals while you travelling around the country.