Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is an orphanage, nursery and captive breeding ground for wild Asian elephants. The orphanage was originally founded in order to afford care and protection too many of the orphaned unwarned wild elephants found wandering in and near the forests of Sri Lanka.The orphanage was established to feed, nurse and house young elephants found abandoned by their mothers. Young elephants sometimes fall into pits and ravines in their quest for water during drought period. Other orphans have been displaced from their wild habitat by development projects or have been found abandoned before weaning, diseased or wounded.
It was established in 1975 by the Sri Lanka Department of Wildlife Conservation. The orphanage was first located at the Wilpattu National park, then shifted to tourist complex at Benthota and then to the Dehiwala Zoo. From the Zoo it was shifted to Pinnawala.
It is located at Pinnawala village, 13 km (8.1 mi) northeast of Kegalle town in Sabaragamuwa Province of Sri Lanka.89 km away from Colombo.