16 days in Sri Lanka with Shantha I am very happy to recommend Ceylon Escapes as their service has been exceptional from start to finish. Ceylon Escapes will arrange your whole itinerary for you but I enjoy the task of putting together holiday itineraries myself, I don’t really find that travel guide books are a good place to start for some reason so starting from a position of ignorance about my chosen destination I usually read up on TA and look at typical itineraries offered by the top holiday companies. This gives me a starting point but I also know from experience that the itineraries offered by these tour companies are far too hectic, regimented and rarely show the traveller the true country being visited. My next step is to contact some local tour companies with my own brief which, rather than telling them where I want to visit, just says what I like and don’t like doing. The itinerary that Rebecca quickly came back with stood out from the rest as, rather than giving me a standard package, it was clear that she had actually read my brief and came up with a very interesting and varied itinerary. In truth I could easily have just accepted her itinerary and would have had an excellent holiday I’m quite certain, but where would the fun have been in doing that! Over the course of a month I questioned Rebecca on the places she was suggesting, the hotels she had chosen and the route and she always answered quickly and patiently, I put forward my ideas and received honest advice as to whether these were good ideas or not and together we came up with our final itinerary which I can now say was perfect for us. The first test was would our driver/guide actually materialise but sure enough Shantha was at Colombo airport to greet us and help me find the ATM and buy a local SIM for my phone. Shantha was always a mine of information whether it be the modern or ancient history of Sri Lanka, flora and fauna, politics plus food and culture so he was always informative and entertaining. Our tour was splendid, Shantha was very flexible and made suggestions along the way so we had a fascinating and dynamic holiday. Shantha was a perfect companion, he was there when we needed him but we had all the space we needed to enjoy the holiday on our own and most importantly he always looked after our well being. This was particularly pertinent at the end of our trip when the corona virus pandemic effected Sri Lanka, we were scheduled to go on to the Maldives but flights there stopped two days before we were due to go, the national parks, temples etc closed down, hotels and restaurants were closing by the day and public opinion was becoming distrustful of tourists. Shantha kept us informed of the changing situation, not to panic us but just to help us make the right decisions. We changed our flights and left Sri Lanka on one of the last flights out, Shantha made sure we got to the airport and amazingly waited outside until we were safely on the plane in case we needed help to remain in Sri Lanka. He did all of this in the knowledge that he would have to go into self isolation himself when he left us and his wife’s business was also having difficulties because of the Covid 19 situation and because he was a tour guide. We absolutely could not fault Shantha’s commitment and professionalism to us throughout our tour. I am sure you will have gathered by now I would whole heartedly recommend Ceylon Escapes and feel sure that if you put your trust in them you will not be disappointed.