Highlights tour - Mar 29 - Apr 6, 2019

Traveler: Karyn R. - Local specialist: Shalindra Samarakoon

Had an amazing trip to Sri Lanka with a group of friends in March/April 2019. The Blue Whale watching in Marrissa was a highlight (for me) as was the safari tour where we came very close to elephants and all sorts of wildlife. Travelling on the roads in Sri Lanka is not for the faint hearted - our driver Anoj was excellent and we felt safe and comfortable at all times. Distances can be deceiving - one day travelling a few hundred kilometres took us over 6 hours - which was exhausting - some roads are narrow and congested with traffic of all sorts (including domestic cows wandering about). Our accommodations (suggested by Kimkim) were all excellent choices - we especially loved the riverside tent camp. A useful tip for people using this service is to check beforehand or specify if you wish your accommodations to be near multiple options for your evening meal, quite often we found ourselves with only the option of eating at the hotel where we were staying - which were all excellent, we had amazing food and was all very reasonably priced. Also due to the time travelling to each destination meant that we often went without lunch, which wasn't really an issue as the breakfasts included in each hotel were plentiful and always included a hot meal option. Meeting local villagers and experiencing a traditional meal cooked over an open fire and eating it with our hand was another highlight - we drank bottled water the whole time but had no problem with bad tummies - the high quality of the hygiene practices of all the food places was a relief. The booking experience with Shalindra for me was excellent - he was quick to respond to all of my changes and requests for information - he called during the trip to ensure all was going well - which was appreciated. I requested an early change to add the whale watching to the itinerary, which I expected the accommodation would also change to suit, however it did not, we ended up travelling 2 hours one way to our hotel to only then have to get up really early the following morning to backtrack 1 1/2 hours to get back to where we had travelled from he night before. I guess I should have checked this at the time I made the change (however I expected this sort of detail to be considered and sorted before the final bookings were locked in). Overall it was still an exceptional service and company to have done this trip with. A really special shout out to Anoj our driver who was amazing throughout the whole trip, from the very start when my luggage did not appear at the airport (stressful) he spoke to the locals and sorted everything out, to the very flexible and friendly manner with which he conducted our tour and supported us through everything right down to accompanying us into small local shops to ensure we had no trouble communicating what we needed. Thank you team! I would highly recommend KimKim, Shalindra and Anoj to everyone and anyone!

Shalindra Samarakoon profile photo
Shalindra Samarakoon, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Karyn,

Thank you very much for your lovely comments given to us with regard to our services during your trip in Sri Lanka. It was a pleasure in arranging all the services for your tour in Sri Lanka and it was nice to speak with you also while on tour. Please do pass your wonderful experiences and memories to your family and friends and always feel free to contact me anytime with regard to a visit to Sri Lanka.

Hope you would visit again.

Thanks,
Kind Regards,
Shalindra