A heavenly escape for nature lovers! Previously known as Thalawathugoda Biodiversity Study Park or Thalawathugoda Wetland Park, Diyasaru Park is a wetland park that stretches over 60 acres.
The name Diyasaru means “rich in water“; the park’s ecosystem is a makeup of lakes, ponds, flooded woodlands, and marshes.
The park aims to study biodiversity, come up with techniques for the optimisation of such ecosystems and preserve Sri Lanka’s wetlands.
All this in addition to providing the community with a window through which they can connect with nature.
|Timing||6:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Entrance (Local Adults)||LKR 100*|
|Entrance (Local Children)||LKR 50*|
|Entrance (Foreign Adults)||LKR 500*|
|Entrance (Foreign Children)||LKR 250*|
|Contact Number||+94112 073 550|
*Prices as of March 2022
History Of Diyasaru Park
The park is a man-built wetland located in Thalawathugoda, Sri Jayewardenepura, close to the Parliament Complex in front of Diyawanna Oya – where you also find Beddegana Wetland Park.
The park was opened to the public on 3rd October 2017, but it has a history going back to the 1980s. In the 1980s, this area was nothing more than a paddy field.
Part of the region was used for the construction of parliament lake and the other part was a dredge disposal area. With time, this became a habitat for invasive species, turning the area into a wetland.
Due to the flood that occurred in 2010, the Land Reclamation and Development Cooperation decided to modify the region as a wetland by dividing the area into islets and adding new canals.
The wetland prevents the area from getting flooded by absorbing and retaining flood water.
How To Get To Diyasaru Park
This park is open throughout the whole year (Yay!). It opens daily between 6.00 a.m to 5.00 p.m – giving you plenty of time to immerse in its verdant beauty and rich biodiversity.
You can travel there by bus, via Colombo-Rajagiriya, or Nugegoda-Pitta Kotte roads. However, travelling by cab is always easier.
Diyasaru Park Layout
The park is the composition of numerous zones, providing a natural habitat for animals and a comprehensive nature experience for visitors.
The park has a butterfly garden, a bird-watching tower, a bird hide, a children’s pond and an organic agricultural area; the park is also equipped with a herbarium, an audio-video room, an open study area, an ecology laboratory, and a plant nursery.
The two huts found right after the entrance provide a space for group sessions and studies. The park hosts many seminars and workshops related to wetland management and biodiversity.
For instance, Diyasaru Park organised the Wetlands Action for People and Nature programme in collaboration with the Sri Lankan Land Development Corporation; the event was hosted in celebration of World Wetland Day on the 2nd of February, 2022.
This was also when the park’s herbarium was launched – the herbarium studies and records wetland plants. The park also partners with private sector companies for events and workshops.
Flora And Fauna Of Diyasaru Park
The park shelters over 250 species including a range of endemic and migratory birds. Dragonflies, butterflies, fish, and reptiles can be found in abundance too.
The lakes and ponds are home to 15 fish species, three of which are endemic. The butterfly park attracts 40 types of butterflies. You can also see 28 dragonfly species, 7 mammal species, and 28 reptile species.
There’s a dedicated area for five endangered fishing cats. Among the other inhabitants are estuarine crocodiles, leaf monkeys, and otters – keep an eye out for green stink bugs, Pale-billed flowerpecker, little grebe, and Red-wattled lapwing during your nature walks.
As for the flora of the park, there are numerous aquatic plants and over 100 native plant species.
Activities At Diyasaru Park
Diyasaru Park offers an array of guided tours. Bird-watching tours, butterfly garden visits, animal and wetland plants observation, and home garden visits are a few options available to visitors; some of these tours include laboratory sessions as well.
Moreover, special events and programmes are offered on days such as World Wetland Day, World Water Day, and World Environment Day.
Birdwatching Tours for Tourists
For a comprehensive learning experience that’s also fun and unique, opt for a guided birdwatching tour; there are special tours for tourists. The approximate duration is 5 hours, and most tours include hotel pickups.
Depending on the type of tour you’ve selected, you’ll be picked up from your hotel at around 6 am. At the entrance, you’ll meet a naturalist, who will guide you through the park.
Diyasaru Park is an excellent location for nature photography, but remember that you need permission for commercial and wedding photography.
Study and Group Sessions
The park offers various group sessions for kindergarten children, school children, university students, and disabled people – the park endeavours to involve all demographics in the conservation of nature.
These study sessions focus on the biodiversity of the park. There’s also a nature club – Diyasaru Nature Club – that visitors can join.