Aitken Spence Hotels is proud to announce the expansion of Heritance Kandalama’s conservation area in Sri Lanka, and the introduction of a new elephant gathering excursion for travellers, that is guided by experienced local naturalists.

A significant investment sees an additional 13 acres of land added to the hotel’s conservation forest area, which now spans over 211 acres, creating a secure forest bridge within the existing Forest Department nature reserves.

This expansion secures the longevity of the sanctuary’s wealth of biodiversity, creating a haven of ecological preservation amidst Sri Lanka’s central province. The forest stands as a testament to Heritance Kandalama’s dedication to protecting Sri Lanka’s invaluable ecosystems and its myriad inhabitants.

Conservation area visitors will encounter a vibrant canvas of 128 species of native flora that form a colourful backdrop to the flurry of activity from the forest’s inhabitants, and 64 species of butterflies add a graceful dance to the landscape whilst the air resonates with the songs of 183 endemic and migratory bird species.

The sanctuary’s recent expansion safeguards a habitat and roaming territory for 19 species of reptiles, some rare and endangered, and 17 mammals. The sanctuary is criss-crossed by 11 protected natural streams that nurture the local ecosystem, sustaining life throughout the landscape. These water sources contribute to the flourishing biodiversity and serve as vital lifelines for the many species within the forest.

Heritance Kandalama warmly invites guests and eco-tourism enthusiasts to explore and appreciate the natural beauty and rich biodiversity of this expanded sanctuary.

Heritance Kandalama also serves as a remarkable tableau for one of the world’s most spectacular wildlife events: the Elephant Gathering at Minneriya and Kaudulla National Parks.

Guests can witness the awe-inspiring sight of “The Gathering,” which takes place between October and November, where herds of elephants, sometimes numbering 200 or more, congregate to feed and bathe in this natural abundance. Here is an opportunity to be immersed in a captivating scene, as we ensure our excursions respect wildlife and observe the animals responsibly from a distance and be guided by experienced local naturalists.

A Superior Double Room at Heritance Kandalama in November starts from approximately £264 ($322) +tax per room per night.

An Elephant Gathering excursion at Heritance Kandalama costs approximately £65 ($80) per group of up to 5 people, plus park entrance fees of LKR11,500 per person (approx. £29).

To discover more about Heritance Kandalama, visit:

To find out more about the elephant gathering, visit: