In early 2003 my partner and I visited Sri Lanka for a six-week holiday. We had no organised plans when we arrived, other than having the first two nights booked at a Colombo hotel.
After ten utterly relaxing days on the beach at Hikkaduwa, we decided to head north to Kandy for some cultural enlightenment. After an average first night in Kandy we lucked it by finding an amazing 1930’s bungalow just down the hill from where we had stayed the night before. They didn’t normally take un-booked guests, however in our case they made an exception.
We settled in and were treated to a divine afternoon tea where we met an American couple who were also staying at the house. They had a tour planned with a local guide but then the day before they were supposed to leave they cancelled on him and went with a friend instead. They tried to convince us to take their driver to ease their conscience. At first we were reluctant as we really wanted to just travel on our own, but decided that it could be a convenient way to get around. The driver was Sarath.
Our chance meeting with Sarath, made our trip. We spent about 8 or 9 days with him visiting all kinds of places – temples, wildlife, tea plantations, beaches and not just the regular tourist spots. It was always entertaining on the road and Sarath took great pleasure in getting us to eat like locals. With our hands and the hotter the better.
Sarath has immense knowledge about his country and is passionate about sharing it with others. He is a kind and considerate guide, always happy to go where you want to go, but will also take you places you wouldn’t ordinarily get to see. We found Sarath to have a great sense of humour and we had many, many laughs on our travels together – we now consider him to be our very good friend.
I have engaged Sarath on another 2 trips since our first one and always felt totally safe when travelling on my own with him. I would recommend Sarath to all travellers, and in particular women. Sarath will always take great care and responsibility to ensure your safety. And your fun!
Happy travelling in beautiful Sri Lanka!