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“Driver in Sri Lanka”
Review of Sri Lanka

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Hampshire, England
Level 6 Contributor
703 reviews
342 helpful votes
“Driver in Sri Lanka”
Reviewed 21 March 2010

We have just completed a 4 day, 3 night Hill Country Tour with a private car and driver. We started from Colombo and visited Kandy, Newara Eliya and Ella. On the last day we were dropped at Unawatuna for an 8 day beach holiday.

We used Dimuthu Priyadarshana (Mr Dimuthu) who can be contacted on "dimuthu81@hotmail.com" or his mobile 0094776302070

We found Dimuthu via a "well known" travel guide who recommended him

Dimuthu was easy to communicate with both by email and then face to face on the tour. He was well informed, helpful and friendly and readily adapted the tour arrangements to suit our needs.

During the trip was happy to be flexible and ready to make suggestions for visits/stops without being pushy

We asked him to suggest hotels/guest houses which he was happy to do but were chose and booked our own - the price he quoted was on this basis and I considered it fair. I did get one other quote which was a little more

The car was modern and reasonably large we efficient air con

I have no hesitation in recommending Dimuthu

See my reviews of the hotels and guest houses we stayed in on our trip
.

Helpful?
12 Thank Mike48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London,Ontario
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
45 helpful votes
“Booking a Private Trip with Driver in Sri Lanka”
Reviewed 16 March 2010

After significant research and correspondence in designing a two week itinerary and arranging hotel and driver bookings , we settled with WALKERS TOURS. The company's web correspondent, Oshaan, that I dealt with was a crackerjack - he responded promptly, appropriately and knowledgeably to each one of my numerous queries, and ultimately booked all the hotels I requested and came up with the best price (compared with one other local company).
He also arranged a private driver for us. Therein lay the problem. We ditched the first driver almost immediately when it became apparent that he no more spoke English than I did Sinhala. But, no problem, Oshaan immediately found an alternate. Language was not a problem any longer. It was personality - cocky, small-minded, domineering, opportunistic (if left unchecked, he would have treated us as his personal ATM). His so-called guiding amounted to textbook rote regurgitation of facts at specific tourist sites and nothing in between. He did not get the hint that we were not at all interested in him taking us to factories to line his pockets with commission and his endless hints at tips, beginning day one, wore very thin.
The lessons I believe one should take away from this latter problem:
1. If at all possible when arranging for a driver, interview him (no hers there) in advance
2. Do not allow yourself to be bullied, but be clear from the outset
3. Do not hesitate to make a change in drivers if necessary. You spend too much time together to allow this to interfere with the joy of the trip
4. Avoid Dilruk de Silva

Helpful?
16 Thank Adventurer810586
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
England
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
11 helpful votes
“SRI LANKA - Places to see, Driver”
Reviewed 16 February 2010

If you are thinking of going to Sri Lanka the best option is to book a driver so you could enjoy the comfort and to see the most of the country. It is not easy to get around. Roads are very busy, in bad conditions, and to be honest driving in Sri Lanka is a night mare. They don’t care about red lights, signs, traffic rules are there but nobody cares about them. I felt very safe with my driver George who I booked for 6 days. He was very polite, charming, friendly and welcoming. Talkative if I wanted him to be or quite when I needed some time just for myself.
I called him before I arrived to Sri Lanka and asked him to organize some accommodation for me as well which he has done and I was highly satisfied with everything he done for me. He knew a lot of off road places of my interest and was helping me with organizing my hiking trips as well.

I can highly recommend George as a driver for your trip in Sri Lanka. You could contact him on his mobile phone [--] but try to do it in advance because he is quite popular and might not be available for the time you would like him to spend with you.

Colombo – Dirty city full of armed forces with high security and lots of shopping possibilities. The best place to book for accommodation is in Dehiwala called The Horbill Home Hostel. Accommodation is not far from central Colombo 1minute from the beach and it is one of the nicest places I have stayed in for amazing price of £6:00 a night.

Unawatuna and south coast – amazing place with great beaches. All area between Hikkaduwa and Matara is full of tourists staying in their hotels enjoying swimming pools close to the ocean. Great evening walks on the sandy beaches, traditional fishing is taking place there as well plus much more.

Yala National Park – Amazing place full of animals but full of tourists as well. If you consider to visit safari please consider dry season because it is not much point to go there in wet season. Animals will be hiding in bushes and that is not why you went there :)

Ella – Briliant views from village, perfect base for walks and tea plantations.

Horton’s Plains and The world’s end – Silent, strange, breathtaking drop. Consider early morning start to get the most of the view. You will find amazing waterfalls there too.

Nuwara Eliya – Best place to stay for trip to Horton’s plains and to buy cheap designer hiking clothes.

Kandy – Cultural town with nice temple. Worth to spend a day or two. But don’t try to look for a night life here cause there isn’t any.

Enjoy your trip in this beautiful country with lots of traditions and wonderful nature.
I have spent 17 days there and it was one of my best holidays.

Helpful?
5 Thank facko2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco
Level 2 Contributor
3 reviews
3 helpful votes
“The Beautiful Island of Sri Lanka Spells Adventure”
Reviewed 16 January 2010

My boyfriend Sam and I just got back from a three-week trip to Sri Lanka and agree with everything the article says about Sri Lanka and then some. Our trip can be described in one word: adventure. We stayed in the capital city of Colombo and made a few trips to other parts of the island. We went to the New Year's celebration at the Galle Face hotel and never have I seen any group of people party harder in 85 degree weather until breakfast was served at 6am beachside. The hotel is reminicent of the colonial days of Sri Lanka with white washed walls and a British flavor. We took a day trip from Colombo to Pinawala to see the elephant orphange which holds over 100 elephants. Arrive at 9am and you can watch the trainers feed the baby elephants and herd them all to the river to bathe. It was a surreal experience to watch the elephants interact with humans and each other. We went down the road to take our own elephant ride - sitting 9 feet tall on top of the elephant as if it were a horse with only a small rope to hold on to. Our first real adventure was a safari in Yala national park, a 5 hour twisty ocean view ride to the southern most tip of the country. We hired a driver complete with a 1980s land rover (minus power steering) to high tail it through the park in search of animals. We had great sightings of wild elephants, sambas (large deer), monkeys, peacocks, mating cobras, and yes, even a leopard. Our hotel, Yala Village, resembled a cross of African Safari meets Yosemite. We were warned of wild elephants walking to and from our cabin type room, which didn't seem real until we saw one the next morning on our way to breakfast. Most hotels come with the option full board (meals included) - an excellent excuse to gorge on the spicy food always including chicken curry, greenbean curry, beetroot curry, egg hoppers, string hoppers, kottu, dahl (lentils), coconut cake, etc. Our next adenture took us east to Kandalama where we stayed at a five star resort, the Heritance Kandalama. We came across tourists from Russia, Switzerland, Germany, Great Britain, and Austrailia but few from the US since it seems word hasn't gotten out just yet. We hiked the rock of Sigiriya which was home to the ancient kings in 200AD. Our final adventure outrivaled the atmosphere of Hawaii as we stayed three nights at the Taj Exotica in Bentota. The five star hotel sits oceanfront with magnificent views of the beach and a gorgeous pool. Again, we opted for full board and an ocean front room for two people at $220 per night total. I could have stayed at the beach for two weeks dining on Sri Lankan cuisine and soaking in the perfect weather. It is exactly half way around the world, but if you're looking for an adenture....this is it. We had a great time and I would highly recommend a trip to the beautiful island of Sri Lanka.

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3 Thank thenovagirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
kingston
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
7 helpful votes
“Beautiful SRI LANKA”
Reviewed 17 September 2009

I travelled to Sri Lanka on a quest to visit my Grandfathers grave. I was very nervous when i discovered i was the only person booked on the tour. Jaleel my driver and guide put me at ease and made my trip a memorable one. Apart from visiting the grave which was very emotional i had many other wonderful experiences. The elephant orphanage in Pinnawella was incredible where i watched 65 elephants bathing in the river.SIGIRYA WAS MY FAVOURITE PLACE BECAUSE IT WAS SURROUNDED BY BEAUTIFUL SCENERY AND AMAZING WILDLIFE.
I would recommend jaleel as the perfect guide.
jaleel@yahoo.com http://www.amazingtourslk.co.cc/

Helpful?
3 Thank kcthr2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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