Sri Lanka may not come to mind for big game, but the island’s wildlife is as vast and varied as the landscape itself. Animals here range from bold, mischievous monkeys to shy spinner dolphins and a whole host of large mammals and rare species. Among the must see animals is the island’s big cat, the leopard and iconic Asian elephants, sloth bear, blue whales, and a plethora of fascinating birdlife, reptiles and butterflies in a wide range of habitats. Sri Lanka is an eclectic mix of dry plains and lush forests and jungles and its wildlife is in a class of its own, with many great hotels and tented camps located on the borders of key national parks offering world class game drives and wildlife photography opportunities. Topping the Sri Lanka wildlife bucket-list is perhaps Yala National Park in the south – one of the best places in the world to discover the elusive leopard – and Minneriya National Park, for the largest gatherings of wild elephants seen anywhere in the world between the months of June and September.