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Awesome time sailing the Indian Ocean!

I sailed with Sail Lanka twice and it was wonderful each time! The staff was super kind and they... read more

Reviewed 7 August 2018
Carly N
Excellent Experience. Only book w them!

If you can splurge for this experience, absolutely do! We took out the Jade for a day of whale... read more

Reviewed 2 May 2018
San Diego, California
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All reviews overnight trip dietary requirements paddle boarding breakfast and lunch these wonderful creatures few hours whale sharks see whales an amazing experience tourist boats jade anchored ensuite lanka deck sri passengers
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12 - 17 of 54 reviews
Reviewed 8 May 2017

We had booked an Mirissa overnight cruise with sail lanka charter and what a trip it turned out to be.Had the time of our lives.we had boked jade 25 for April 27th and every moment was memorable ..from boarding till we disembarked. IN the evening after yummy snacks prepared by chef Dimutha (very talented). we had fun time in the water with some swim and splashing jumping off board.the ensuite cabins were very comfortable despite the very hot weather.Later in the morning we had a thrilling ride chasing giant blue whales and got to see 8-9 whales and at one point our catamaran was surrounded by at least a hundred bottle nose dolphins which happened to be highlight of our srilankan trip.
Captain Ahura,chef Dimutha and crew Dinnsas and Chamal we very friendly and warm and made our stay on the catamaran very comfortable.
Highly recommend this to anyone looking for a once in a life time experience in sri lanka
cheers guys keep up the good work!

Thank AsmaN122
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 April 2017

In February I booked the 2 days east coast cruise starting in Passikudah for mid-April, for me and my girlfriend. Immediately after booking, the communication was very slow and unprofessional. I was in contact with Jeroen, their general manager. It took him quite some time to respond. Furthermore, he forgot to delete their internal correspondence from our emails and multiple times he referred to attachments which were missing from the email.

All this is annoying, however the real problem started when I had contacted them again a week prior to the cruise for information about the pick-up. A day before the cruise was supposed to start I finally received an email giving departure details from Mirissa, whereas we booked from Passikudah (which is on the other side of the island!). I immediately reached out to Sri Lanka Charter for clarification, I hoped they had just send me the wrong email.

However they claimed to have made a mistake in their booking system and booked a 2 days cruise around Mirissa for us. I find this very hard to believe since the invoice stated ‘2 days east coast’ and you cannot even book a 2 days cruise starting in Mirissa via the Sri Lanka Charter website! Therefore I am under the strong impression they didn’t get any other bookings for a trip from Passikudah and pretended to have made this mistake.

When I spoke to the general manager, his response was: “we work a lot with interns” and “the sailing season hasn’t started in Passikuddah” (strange, because on their website they state that the Passikuddah sailing season starts in April). He could not give an alternative or think of any solution, so we had to book a new hotel and change our travel schedule last-minute. After our phone call I received an email with apologies and the promise that I would receive a full refund.

Unfortunately the problems didn’t stop here, a week went by without hearing from them, so I reached out to Sri Lanka Charter again to remind them of my promised refund. To my surprise nothing had been done yet and apparently he needed more information from me to do for the transfer. In the end I did receive my refund, but they didn’t refund the banking costs (30 euros).

Given this bad experience I would not recommend anyone to book with Sri Lanka Charters. If you still decide to make a booking, double check everything they do and negotiate a very small advance payment since it seems they cancel tours when they don’t get enough bookings.

1  Thank cvanheemst
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 April 2017

An overnight cruise and stay on a catamaran with friendly capable crew proved to be a fabulous option for seeing whales as well as just appreciating the South Sri Lankan coastline. Much better than joining the hordes of people who go out on the packed to the rails 'whale-hunting' boats from Mirissa each day, with Sail Lanka you will already be floating out there while you enjoy a leisurely breakfast on deck looking out for dolphins. Our 24 hr cruise, alternately using sails and engines, included 3 meals (with the option to buy drinks) and plenty of time for swimming or stand-up paddling. Accommodations are fine for one night, and our only complaint is that we found our cabin rather too hot and ended up lying up on the deck for a few hours instead. But still this was definitely a terrific experience - fun and great value!

Thank Roshea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 April 2017

Found this on Tripadvisor and booked a morning-lunch sail out of Mirissa to watch whales. The family and friends (total 8 persons) were met with tea/coffee early morning and then heading out. Fresh breakfast was served en route.The place of whale watching is of course a bit of a crowd, but we felt very privileged to be on board spacious and carefully (and respectfully!) navigated catamaran "Pearl", seeing these fantastic animals. We were seeing whales as long as we wished. Then heading back around lunch time, anchoring for a swim outside Mirissa .We had delicious tuna steak lunch and dessert before going back to harbour. I warmly recommend this trip ,- the staff was very good, on board a safe and well steered ship, and we all had a great experience seeing the whales!

1  Thank jmb20002015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2017

Don't book with anyone else! You'll miss out on a fabulous experience.

We had a two week tour of Sri Lanka with our 4 year old daughter and were keen to see the whales.

After a lot of research we read a lot of reviews about other companies who offer whale watching cruises, but all sounded rushed, with dangerously over-packed and uncomfortable boats. We also read a lot about the lack of respect some of these companies have for these wonderful creatures of the sea, with boats often chasing whales and even blocking them in between two boats.

It was then that we came across Sail Lanka Charter here on Tripadvisor, with reviews of their various excursions being a lot more eco-friendly, relaxed, exclusive and non-evasive to the marine life.

Following a few mails with Jeroen who was very prompt at responding, and made good suggestions on what itinerary to select, we chose the one night whale watching cruise on board their relatively new 52ft catamaran 'Jade' that departed Mirissa 3.30pm one afternoon, returning the following day at 1.30pm. The vessel has four double cabins and we opted to book one cabin for the three of us. Comfortable for two, a bit of a squeeze for three, but we wanted to keep our daughter where we could see her!

I must say, what an amazing experience! And the cost wasn't as much as you'd think. It was only very slightly more than if we had booked a hotel for one night and one of the morning trips with one of the other operators, on a packed out boat.

On arrival we were helped on board and greeted with a welcome drink and introduction to the crew of 5. It was a big surprise to discover we were the only passengers who had booked, so the three of us had the boat to ourselves for the whole trip, with our own crew, just like a private charter. This was pure luck but made it even more special.

The captain and crew were fantastic and really took good care of us and our young daughter, keeping a careful watch over her safety and spending time playing with her. The chef also is exceptionally talented and was able to cook several different dishes for each of our different dietary requirements! Food and water was included in the cost, but we were able to buy beer, wine and soft drinks at a reasonable extra cost which we paid for at the end of the cruise.

We were pleased to see at least 8 different whales and hundreds of dolphins, staying far out at sea long after all the other boats returned back to Mirissa harbour, with their dozens of passengers. It was also great to see how the crew were so excited to see the whales too, taking photos themselves of the sightings, which shows the passion they have for what they are doing.

It was a truly exclusive experience and we certainly recommend Sail Lanka charter. They move around Sri Lanka at different times of the year, so check out their website for itineraries, and on Tripadvisor they are listed in areas Bentota, Galle, Mirissa, Kalkudah, Passikudah and Trincomalee.

See 'Travellers Photos' for some photos we took on the trip.

Special thanks to Jeroen for organising our booking and the guys on board - Andru (captain), Dimuthu (chef), Tharidu, Pasinda and Eranga (crew).

Hope to sail with you again some day!

2  Thank Dean M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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