After the Royal Botanical Gardens at Peradeniya, Hakgala, 10km (6 miles) south of Nuwara Eliya, is the second most important garden in Sri Lanka.
Though on a smaller scale than those at Peradeniya, Hakgala’s plantations of roses, shrubs, ferns and montage woodland are delightfully located, with scenic views.
Above the gardens, a forest trail leads into virginwoodland – the home of a troop of purple-faced leaf monkeys, a species endemic to Sri Lanka, and to endemic bird species including the Sri Lanka white-eye, Sri Lanka wood pigeon, and Sri Lanka whistling thrush.
- Open daily from 07:30 to 17:00
The Gardens date back to the Kandyan kingdom, when they were used as royal pleasure grounds. However, it was soon after the British seized the Kandyan Kingdom that they were established in 1821. The Gardens are elegantly landscaped over 150 hectares of beautifully undulating grounds. Within this large loop of the meandering Mahaweli Ganga is a spectacular display of more than 400 species of indigenous tropical flora and exotic plants.
Henarathgoda Botanical garden is situated in close proximity to Gampaha Municipality opened in 1876. It is surrounded by beautiful paddy fields, a man-made green environment, secondary forest & a beautiful water streams. This garden carries historically link to the evolution of Sri Lankan Economy. The first imported rubber tree to Sri Lanka was first planted in this garden and it is visible there. The garden has a fairly big collection of tropical flower plants with eye-catching landscaping properly designed and many shrubs, bushes and beautiful trees could. The garden is famous destination for youngsters.
Being located in the intermediate zone, the Medicinal Plant Garden at Ganewatte offers an ideal site for cultivating a large number of medicinal plants. The garden is 52 acres in extent. About half of the land is occupied by coconut cultivation and 22 acres are occupied by a collection of tropical plants that are used for medicinal purposes. It is situated in the North Eastern Province about 15 miles away from Kurunegala.
A botanical garden is being established in Mirijjawila in the Hambantota district. This is the first botanical garden to be established in the dry zone in Sri Lanka. It has an extent of 300 acres. The objective of establishing this botanical garden is for the conservation of dwindling trees and shrubs in the dry zone, popularizing of unpopular trees, conservation of medicinal herbs, promotion of tourism and providing botanical knowledge to the younger generation.