Udawattakele Forest Reserve
2 March 2023
Udawattakele Forest Reserve often spelled as Udawatta Kele, is a historic forest reserve on a hill-ridge in the city of Kandy. It is 104 hectares (257 acres) large and 635 metres in elevation. The reserve contains a great variety of plant species, especially lianas, shrubs and small trees. There are several giant lianas. Many of small and medium size mammals that inhabit Sri Lanka can be seen here. Several kinds of snakes and other reptiles might be seen. Udawattakele was designated as a forest reserve in 1856, and it became a sanctuary in 1938. The forest is of religious importance as there are three Buddhist meditation hermitages and three rock shelter dwellings for Buddhist monk hermits.
The visitors’ entrance is on the western side of the forest, about 15–20 minutes walking from the Temple of the Tooth. It is a pleasant trek in the lush greenery which is an enjoyable excursion even for families. Udawattakele is also a famous birdwatching site. About 80 bird species have been recorded in the sanctuary.