Hi all we have just got back from the magical island of Sri lanka...
I am writing this review to benefit a wonderful man/guide called ramunni de silva.
Me and my fiancée chose Sri lanka for our wedding destination over a year ago, and I have been planning and plotting our trip ever since.
I contacted many a guide recommended on trip adviser, but in the end chose ramunni after lengthy discussions on the web with Dave Stockwell ( a destination expert who has helped me with many a question on here,,,,, thanks Dave for all your advise!!!! " still would like to take you on with the beer drinking competition ha ha")
Anyhow, once rammuni was picked, I decided what trips/excursions were to take place!!!
We decided on
1 A beach BBQ for my best man as it was his 30th while I was out here getting wed
2 A trip to galle, turtle hatchery etc
3 A trip to the elephant orphanage
4 And lastly a White water rafting trip
The first trip/ BBQ
We were picked up by ramunni and his driver at 5pm on the 22nd of august and were taken to the ramada beach resort -no more than 10 minutes from our own fantastic resort the kani lanka ( review to follow )
Upon arrival at the ramada we were shown his tailoring shop ( which we used to great effect for our sari's on our wedding night!!!! I will post pictures :-) )
We then progressed to the beach, to be greeted by a game of beach cricket and a BBQ set under some tents with lanterns....
When the cricket had finished, which may I add we lost to 4 10 year olds... ( they must have spiked our drinks ha ha ) we started on the pre drinks for the BBQ.... And without warning the heavens opened and the once peaceful beach turned into a maelstrom of wind and rain
No matter though, all food and drink was quickly dispatched into a nearby hut... Not 5 star but as the evening wore on and the arrack flowed the venue grew in stature and really hit the mark in a more personal way - more so than if we had chosen a more upmarket venue!!!!!!
In all Scott ( the birthday boy had a night he will never forget ) I would like to thank the band, who sang tirelessly all night, the cook - who never cooked ( but drank and sang all night and the tens of people who run around after us all night to ensure we had a great time- to one and all of you a great thanks!!!! This cost £250.00 for 9 people
The galle trip
We were picked up at around 8 in the morning, And our first stop was a river boat safari - at which we saw monitor lizards, many exotic birds and got to hold a baby crocodile!!!
Next stop was a trip to the turtle hatchery - where we got to hold baby turtles and some very large ones that they are nursing back to health ( this was really good )
We then visited a mask museum, which showed us how the traditional masks were made - spent quite a bit of money here, but they were willing to barter...
then on to a moon stone mine, again a great place to visit ( there is also a little hut where they make cinnamon sticks here ) i bought my W2B a lovely dress ring for our wedding day ( again bartering was welcomed )
Rammuni then took all of us to a fantastic beach restaurant - the food here put our hotel to shame!!! the setting could not have been beaten, the waves were breaking about 20 feet from our table...
after lunch we headed onto the beach and took a glass bottomed boat ride and did some snorkelling
the last stop of the day was down to galle itself, we had a quick walk around the old forts and headed back to the hotel - a very long, but extremely enjoyable trip!!! this cost us £10 per person
The Elephant Orphanage
A very early start - we were picked up at 5am ( if you are fully inclusive were your staying the hotel will make a pack up for you, we had them made and then gave them to our driver )
We got to the orphanage about 9am - after a road stop for a bite to eat and a couple of coffees
The feeding of the baby elephants takes place twice a day and we were there to see the first, after this Rammuni took us down to the river front ( where all the elephants are lead to twice a day to be bathed) he had booked us the best table overlooking the river and had cold beers waiting for us - these were very much needed, it was baking that day.
We were then ushered to the front of the restaurant and see all the elephants walk (some stampede past us ) they were so close we could touch them as they walked past - a wonderful experience i will never forget!!!
we stayed watching the elephants bath for a few hours, with drinks and food flowing...
then off to a tea plantation, only 5 mins up the road - best cup of tea i have ever tasted....
After this we were drove to the millennium foundation a place were you can ride some elephants into a river where they spray you with there trunks - fantastic ( extra cost for this )
On the way back to the hotel, Rammuni had arranged for us to have supper in a small family run place, which grew its own food..
This was a great meal, all paid for by our guide.. we spent nearly two hours here drinking and eating..
The whole day cost £14 each
White Water Rafting
Me, two friends and my 10 year old son went on this trip, took nearly 3 hours to get there... but was so worth it!!! the rapids were great fun , but not too dangerous... we could of gone higher up the river for some more thrilling ones, but may have been to hard for my boy to hold on.
the trip down the river took just over an hour, then we had a shower, got changed and had a well earned meal in a hotel that is situated on the river...
This trip cost us £10 each for the rapids and £35 in total for the driver (meal was an extra)
We also used Rammuni to take my new wife and i and my friends out to a local seafood restaurant... Again recommended by our guide, we all had a great time here and may have had a few too many beers and arracks.... Rammuni did not charge to take us here
We used him again to take 5 of us jet skiing... the jet skis are about 10mins from the Kani Lanka ( same place as the river boat safari ) and cost us about £40 for half an hour... again Rammuni refused to be paid for this...
My parents used him for a day trip to Colombo ( shopping ) this cost them £35 for the day
And lastly his tailor made us our evening wedding outfits - a sequined sari cost £45 (including skirt, top , sending someone to measure us and sending a women to dress the women on our wedding night ) - The men's shirts cost us £25 and included a embroidered sash
I would recommend Rammuni and his driver to anyone thinking of going to Sri Lanka
If anyone would like anymore info or his details please feel free to contact me
A big thanks to Dave for recommending him
A massive thanks to Rammuni and his driver
And to all of you who have taken the time to read this, thanks for your interest ;-)
Lee and Claire Bance