Trip to Sri Lanka - Jan 27 - Jan 31, 2019
My guide, Solomon, was always on time and knowledgeable about a site. I was walking on a sore foot and he was sure to help me navigate all steps. However, I had some difficulty understanding his English but I have hearing aids and had trouble understanding many of the Sri Lankans, so I don't know if it was his English or my lack of hearing well. My major complaint was that we had arranged for me to meet a friend of mine in Colombo on the last day of the private tour and we never made it to Colombo on time to meet him. I really felt that Solomon did this on purpose as I got the impression that he thought my friend was my Gate 1 guide before my private tour and that my friend was encroaching on his territory. Actually, it was someone I had met on a tour in Europe and who had convinced me to visit Sri Lanka. To meet him again was to be a highlight of my time in Sri Lanka and I was very disappointed. Solomon did not know that a boat from Delft Island was canceled, so we had to wait two hours for another boat to leave. He said that there was no place to eat lunch on the island so I was starving but he did find a place that I could buy some cookies. The Big Game Camp was recommended as a place to stay. It was the worse overnight accommodations that I have had anywhere--a tent that was too dark even during the day and the worse place to rearrange items for my flights home the next day. I was not told in advance that the scheduled trip to see the dolphins would require leaving the camp at 5 a.m. in the dark from the dark tent and the trip would have been on a fishing boat, which my friend had warned me was unsafe. I decided to not go on it, which resulted in having my last day on the tour just driving around. The boats going to and from Delft Island was enough of an experience already as they were far from being tourist boats. All in all, my private tour of Northern Sri Lanka was quite an experience, an adventure, though I wish that it had worked out a bit better.