Sri Lanka in late July

Nov 30th, 2012, 05:01 AM
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Sri Lanka in late July

We just made a spur of the moment decision and booked tickets to Sri Lanka in late July. I am just starting to research and would love some guidance with our itinerary. We are interested in culture, staying at Tea Trails, seeing elephants(in the wild) and beach. What would be the best route for us? Is it possible to book car and driver who will take us out of Colombo when we arrive at midnight, or should we plan on spending a night there? Thanks!
cakegal is offline  
Nov 30th, 2012, 07:35 AM
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We stayed the night in Negombo, nearer the airport than Colombo. (I'd skip Colombo completely) Your driver can pick you up at the airport and take you to your hotel, then come back in the morning when you are ready to drive to your first destination.

While my trip report is rather old at this point, I really liked our itinerary and it may give you some ideas:

I highly recommend Boutique Sri Lanka for arranging your trip.
Kathie is offline  
Nov 30th, 2012, 08:19 AM
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I'm planning a trip to Sri Lanka as well, for March though. We'll be visiting the Cultural Triangle, Kandy, and Nuwara Eliya, and Galle, with a night in Colombo on the first day. I second Kathie's recommendation of BSL; they will work with your budget and are very responsive to emails.
tripplanner001 is offline  
Dec 1st, 2012, 10:53 AM
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K~What is the benefit of a travel agency for sri lanka? Totally agree about skipping Colombo BTW
offwego is offline  
Dec 1st, 2012, 01:37 PM
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For me, the biggest reason to use a travel agent in Sri Lanka is to have an agency-backed driver (and vehicle). We had a wonderful driver from BSL, but Robbie had a driver that wasn't a good fit and the vehicle wasn't right. If she had contracted with an individual driver there would be no recourse. Because they got the car and driver through BSL, BSL came and changed out the drier and the vehicle.

Also, some accommodations are difficult to book if you don't have local connections, though that is less likely to be an issue.
Kathie is offline  
Dec 9th, 2012, 08:08 AM
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Thanks. We have a specific itinerary in mind and hotels picked out as well. Is it still better to book everything through the agency? Tea Trail is showing no availability from June to September-do they only open room booking a few months out or must one book there through an agency? There is availability in April/May. It seems odd that the entire summer would be booked.
cakegal is offline  
Dec 9th, 2012, 09:49 AM
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Getting a spot at Tea Trails may well be a reason to book through BSL... I think they have more access, as they book so many people there. I'd certainly ask an agency (maybe even two agencies) for a price for what you want. You may find it less expensive than what you can do on your own.
Kathie is offline  
Dec 9th, 2012, 11:57 AM
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Thanks, I sent BSL our itinerary and am looking forward to their response.
cakegal is offline  
Dec 10th, 2012, 09:56 AM
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I heard back from both BSL and Tea Trails and we are working on our plans. All of the houses are available at Tea Trails except Norwood. What would be your choice?
cakegal is offline  
Dec 10th, 2012, 10:27 AM
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Kathie is offline  
Dec 10th, 2012, 12:42 PM
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cakegal - here's another recommendation for BSL.

they were very good to work with and i felt that had we had a problem with the driver, [luckily we didn't - he was very good] or indeed the vehicle, they would have sorted it out for us.

as it was our first trip to Sri Lanka we wanted the security of having someone on the ground to sort things out if need be. if it's not your first trip, that may not be necessary.

hope you have a great time!
annhig is offline  
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