Visiting Sri Lanka was so much more than we expected. From the safari drives, to visiting ancient cities, climbing rocks and mountains, eating delicious local food, watching fire walkers, visiting temples and being by the beach, our guide Chanaka and Columbus Tours showed us the country’s delights. Chanaka shared his wide knowledge and love of the country, using his resourceful and friendly ways to ensure we always clearly experienced his tours in the best way. Beating crowds in the cultural triangle, seeing hundreds of elephants at Minneriya National Park, having front row seats for a traditional dance, and spotting 3 leopards in Yala National Park were real highlights. Thank you Chanaka and Columbus Tours for our trip of a lifetime. We will definitely return some day.
I have been travelling to Sri Lanka twice a year since 2013. (Yes, I should have made my first review of you years ago!)
Columbus Tours have always arranged my flight and accommodation to perfection. I use them not only for my trips to Sri Lanka, but for wherever I go. Before I started using Columbus Tours, my parents had used them for years!
Bobby who owns Columbus, knows everything there is to know about Sri Lanka (and so many other places) She is one the most helpful and kind people I have met.
Iromi and Shasika are the two girls I normally do business with, go backwards to find the right solution for you. They are both extremely professional and knowledgeable in their field of expertise.
The various drivers employed by Columbus Tours are also very knowledgeable about Sri Lanka. Their driving skills are brilliant,as I more often than not fall asleep on our journey to where ever we are going. That is fine driving!
Thank you all for your kindness and wonderful way of being.
Looking forward to seeing you in Marts.
We had an amazing trip in Sri Lanka, our itinerary was great and we took in a whole range of activities from ancient cities, trekking, safaris to days at the beach. The diversity of Sri Lanka means that there is something for everyone.
We never had any issues wherever we travelled in Sri Lanka, everyone was so welcoming and friendly and can say that we always felt safe.
We really enjoyed having our own car and guide and our trip was made even more memorable by our guide Chanaka. He was a very safe driver and the car was extremely comfortable and always clean.
We can honestly say that we don’t think we would have enjoyed our honeymoon half as much without him.
His knowledge and passion for Sri Lanka are an absolute credit and he is an amazing person and tour guide who is so knowledge about the country.
He always made sure we were happy, and made the most of each day and seemed to know all the best spots to take us, away from the tourists.
He seemed to know everything and everyone in Sri Lanka including the best local spots to eat and experience real Sri Lankan cuisine.
He really was a great chauffeur, guide and photographer.
We will definitely be recommend Columbus Tours and Chanaka to friends and family for anyone who is thinking of taking a trip to Sri Lanka.
Joe and Rachel (Mr and Mrs Lee)
Our guide was Chanaka and he was very welcoming from the moment we arrived in Colombo Airport, nothing was too much trouble and he seemed to know everything and everyone in Sri Lanka – he was a fantastic guide nothing was too much trouble and his number 1 priority was ensuring we were happy and safe!
As for Sri Lanka, our tour consisted of 10 days sight seeing and travelling ending in 4 days resting on the East Coast – What a wonderful country, there’s no hiding away from the fact it’s been affected by the Easter attacks with tourism quiet at the moment but the people in Sri Lanka are extremely welcoming and warming and very keen to change this perception from tourists.
The sites/safaris/food/culture/tea plantations of Sri Lanka are incredible, Chanaka took us to some hidden gems and was always making sure we had the VIP treatment.
For me the service that was provided by Colombous Tours for our trip to Sri Lanka was faultless and the itinerary put together by them and Travel Counsellors was exactly what we wanted from our honeymoon, incredible from start to finish and I wouldn’t hesitate to reccomend the company or Sri Lanka as a travel destination.
I would like to thank our guide Priyal for making our trip to Sri Lanka so brilliant. He was friendly, funny and always happy, even after a whole week with me and my family! We visited so many amazing places and Priyal was very knowledgeable about all the places we visited. Our holiday was organized well. We visited so many amazing places and Priyal knew the best times to visit them. We ate at some restaurants that we would never have found on our own. The car we had for our trip was comfortable. I have no negative things to say about our time in Sri Lanka or Columbus Tours, everything was spot on. Our trip was made so much better because we had Priyal with us, he made the whole thing worth every penny. Thankyou for a great experience!
We booked a tour in Sri Lanka with our Dutch friends and a Dutch tour operator. This organization worked together with Columbus Tours. It was an excellent choice. The tour was well prepared and we saw many highlights. But the highlight of the whole tour was our guide Ananda Gamage. He was top, always extremely friendly, good driver, told us the history of the country. He became a good friend.
I would make the train trip shorter and if possible (which is not easy because our stay lasted only 8 days) I would like to spend a whole day at the beach.
We visited Sri Lanka for 8 days in August and had an amazing time. Our driver from Colombus Tours, Priyal was amazing! He greeted us at the airport and drove us around from the start of our holiday to the end. He had a great sense of humour and was always happy, laughing and joking. He had so much knowledge of everywhere and took us to some amazing places for lunch we’d never have known about or found.
During our visit to sri lanka we stayed in 6 hotels, travelling from colombo to sigiriya, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya and Hikkaduwa and somewhere in between. We visited Sigiriya Rock and climbed all the way to the top, went on a safari in Minneriya and saw so many elephants which was amazing!! I didn’t expect to see so many and watched them for hours!
We visited Polonnarwua ancient city and saw a lot of Buddhists listening to a preacher which we walked through to get to the biggest temple.
Our guide took us to a local village where we rode on a cart pulled by ox, rode on a catamaran which I got to row for a bit before I got tired, and made food in their little kitchen and drank coconut water, climbed the farmers tree house where he keeps watch for elephants in the night! They were lovely people and I really enjoyed learning about their simple way of life (again we had to tip them for almost everything).
We visited Dambulla cave temples and then watched a traditional dance group in the evening in Kandy where the men are fire and walked through fire! They invited us for photos with them at the end but again wanted tipping for the privilege! Nothing is for free in Sri Lanka!
We visited temple of the Tooth in the morning super early so we could see the casket with the tooth but felt quite out of place bieng the only westerners in a see of Buddhists! It’s a beautiful building though and has lots of history. We went to a gem museum, word carving shop, a sari shop (I tried on a sari). The only downside to all the shops and places like this is that the owners follow you around and try and pressure you to buy things you can’t just look around without people pushing you to buy. We also had a stroll round the Botanical gardens (more for my mum and sisters benefit as they like plants, I just took lots of pictures of me doing silly things).
We then went to Horton Plains and walked 9km through beautiful mountains! It was cold and rainy up here but the views were incredible. After a lengthy drive we visited the Elephant Transit home in Uda Walawe which is home to baby elephants who have been rescued as they’ve lost their mother’s. We watched them at feeding time when they come out for milk and they bought the tiniest one out first so he could get some milk and it was the cutest thing ever! Then about 60 more followed! It was very cute to watch but was a little sad as you know they should be with family but they don’t have any. They do get released into the wild when they’re grown and able to look after themselves.
The following day we got up super early again to visit Yala National Park where we were lucky enough to see a Bear, crocodiles, elephants, wild boar, deer, buffalo, monkeys and we caught the tail end of the elusive leopard but not enough to get a picture.
We visited a turtle hatchery which looked like the worst aquarium ever at first glance but when you read what they do it makes you feel better and all the turtles have been rescued by fisherman and are missing a limb or something so they have to learn to dive again before they’re released back into the wild.
We attempted a whale watching tour but I spent the whole way being sick as the weather was hurrendous and the sea so choppy! We didn’t see any whales!
All in all we have had an amazing time in Sri Lanka and squeezed as much as we could into a short space of time and visited some amazing places. Our driver Priyal made the trip more than we could have imagined and I thank him so much for everything! I’ve attached some of the thousands of photos I’ve taken over the trip to show some highlights but there were so many to choose from! I would definitely recommend visiting Sri Lanka with Colombus Tours, they were amazing from start to finish (although I write this while still in Sri Lanka after a delayed flight of nearly 24 hours…) so we technically haven’t finished yet!!
Advice to anyone wanting to go; be prepared for a lot of driving if you want to see everything, the amount of dogs on the side of the road is very sad for an animal lover as most are scabby and injured and I just wanted to take them all home, bring plenty of extra money for tipping everyone, from the bell boys at the hotel, the cleaners, the jeep drivers, the village people and even the old man near the train which we just wanted to take a picture of a moving train and he wanted money because he lived nearby! It’s a beautiful country and the food was absolutely incredible! Be prepared to eat curry for breakfast, lunch and dinner (not that I’m complaining as its so good). We loved our trip! Thank you x
My wife & I together with my cousin and his wife have just returned from a 3.5 weeks holiday in Sri Lanka organised for us by Columbus Tours in Sri Lanka. It is our pleasure and bounded duty to express sincere thanks to Bobby Jordan Hansen, Owner Vin Bartholameusz, Sales Manager & Priyal our ever helpful and friendly Driver. Words cannot express our thanks to them, for all their help in organising such a memorable holiday for us. Every detail of our holiday was perfectly organised, and we were well looked after, from beginning to the end. One could not ever imagine that after the recent bombings, that we would experience such a peaceful and worry free holiday. There was no evidence whatsoever, of any threat of violence, in fact it is quite the opposite. Right now is the time to visit Sri Lanka and make full use of the discounts being offered for what is fantastic hotel accommodation, delicious Sri Lankan food, and of course the wonderful helpful and friendly people of Sri Lanka.
We have travelled quite extensively around the world, but a Sri Lanka holiday is always worth serious consideration. Thanks again to Columbus Tours for a fantastic and memorable holiday.
This was by far the best holiday we have ever been in! We had two weeks in Sri Lanka but the first week was traveling around the island with Columbus Tours. The sights, hotels and people blew us away and our guide Ananda was the icing on the cake! He was amazing and looked after us so well that when we had to say goodbye at the end of that week he felt like part of the family! The itinerary was of our making on the whole and Ananda took us to each place and made sure we got the best deals, all the history/ background information and if he couldn’t come with us to some sites he set us up with guides he knew and recommended. Our teenage boys loved every minute too – which takes some doing! At the end of the trip Ananda took us to plant trees with a family as part of a conservation project which was very humbling and fantastic way to end our tour. We couldn’t recommend this company enough and can’t wait to do it all again! Thank you Ananda.
My wife & I booked our honeymoon to Sri Lanka through our UK based travel agent, Emma Turner, at Travel Counsellors. They highly recommended that we used Columbus Tours for our driver who would be responsible for providing our transport as we travelled to 4 different locations over an 8 day period. Their reason for recommending this company was that Columbus Tours only employ the very best staff…they were not wrong!!!
I have to admit we were a little dubious prior to meeting our driver/guide. What would he be like? Would it be strange spending so much time with somebody that we’d only just met? We didn’t need to be worried at all. Chanaka Amarasinghe met us at our hotel in Negombo on the morning of our first day of travelling & from the moment we met him we knew that we were going to get along. He was so friendly and polite. Just what we had hoped for!
Throughout the next 8 days Chanaka made every minute in Sri Lanka count for us. He always had a few options of things that we could do/see as we made our way from Negombo to Dambulla & then Passikudah through to Kandy. At no point was he intrusive but he was always on hand to inform & educate us about the truly wonderful country that Sri Lanka is! He also made sure that if we ever wanted to just spend time alone relaxing then that was also an option.
Not only did Chanaka know so much about all of the main tourist attractions (that you will find on trip advisor as the “must do” things) he also had a few surprises up his sleeve along the way.
He took us to authentic family owned restaurants that served the very best of Sri Lankan dishes (& so cheap too!), spice/herb gardens, he knew all of the best view points for photos (he is also a very good photographer!) & finally the icing on the cake was a local show on our last night with him. Something that we will never forget & the perfect way to end of time in Sri Lanka.
We feel that not only did we get a wonderful driver/guide for our honeymoon trip we have also made a good friend who we will certainly stay in touch with!
We have already spoken to friends and family who, after seeing our photos & videos, are desperate to visit Sri Lanka. We will certainly be advising them to book with Columbus & asking for Chanaka!!
If you are thinking twice about visiting Sri Lanka…don’t. It is a wonderful (perfectly clean) country with so much to do & see. The food is amazing & we have never met such nice welcoming people (& we’ve travelled a lot!).
In short this has been the best holiday of our lives & a large part of the thanks for that goes to Columbus Tours & our good friend Chanaka!
Keep up the good work guys & we will definitely be seeing you again soon
— with Joelle Gmerek.
This is The best organisation we have Traveld with. They are very friendly and have good speaking drivers and hosts.
We had great time with Priyal and are still very thankfull of his care !
Keep on doing what you are doing now
Columbus tours is an amazing company. Our tour guide was Chanaka Amarasinghe and he was amazing!! He went above and beyond to make our two week honeymoon the best experience for us! His extensive knowledge of Sri Lankan history and culture is outstanding and his enthusiasm for his job is so admirable. Columbus tours is such an organised company and they made our honeymoon stress free. We travelled with Chanaka for 8 days seeing Sirigiya, Kandy, Yala, Nuwara Eliya and finishing off in Bentota. We would love to return to Sri Lanka at some point and see the east of the country. We would not hesitate to use Columbus Tours and of course Chanaka again � would recommend to everyone.
We had a fantastic tour guide Lasantha who was so friendly, organised, accommodating and knowledgable and made our trip to Sri Lanka such a wonderful experience.
It is a beautiful country and so much to see and do. We always felt safe and welcome.
The best tour I have ever been on. Ananda was an incredible guide and very knowledgeable. Sri Lanka is my most favourite place in the world – the history, amazing wildlife, food and people. I cannot wait to return with Columbus tours.
Just returned from two weeks with Columbus Tours travelling around Sri Lanka. We were a group of three generations and had an amazing time. Ruwan was our driver, who couldn’t of been any more helpful. He organised all of our tours (dolphin watching, Sigiriya rock, village tour, bird watching etc) booked our train tickets, acted as our tour guide and provided us with lots of history about the country, customs and sights.
I cannot recomend this company enough, from the start of our booking to the hotels which were chosen.
A fantastic experience which was helped by a terrific company…thank you x Vanessa
My husband and I visited Sri Lanka in August last year. After researching the availability and cost of tours we decided to approach Sri Lankan tour operators. We eventually settled on Columbus Tours and found their service outstanding.
Their driver/guide (Chaminda) met us at the airport and drove us around Sri Lanka. He is very professional and friendly and the whole trip went without a hitch!
Chaminda and Columbus Tours were also very helpful in finding our lost luggages.
Everything was great and we highly recommend this company.
We have just had 2 weeks seeing beautiful Sri Lanka with Chanaka Amarasinghe.The trip would not have been anywhere near as enjoyable without his vast knowledge of history, religion & geography. His caring nature & driving skills (1800km) made the whole trip completely stress free. Thx once again Chanaka, Columbus travel are lucky to have you.
I really really recoment Columbus tours. We had a tour for 2 weeks with the best tour guide ever @priyal!!! He showed us all the highlights of the island. But beside that he also showed us secret places that no tourist would ever find also he knew everything about culture, history, buildings and nature…..unbelievable. Columbus arranged a perfect pick up at the AirPort in an very nice,clean van with perfect aircondition. Our guide cleaned the van every day and always had a supply of water bottels in this van.
Despite the attacks, i recommend to visit this country and certainly with the help of Columbus because they give you a safe and family feeling.
Highly recommend. Fabulous guide Chaminda Desilva and great company Columbus Tours to go with round a beautiful country with. A truly amazing unforgettable holiday with many cherished memories thanks to Chaminda Desilva who made it such fun for us, lots of new experiences and tastes and lots of culture and beautiful scenery!
Please use this company …their country depends on tourism.
Columbus tours is the best travel agent in Sri Lanka. They look after their all clients well, most of foreigners continue using Columbus tours as their re visiting Sri Lanka. ,and they treat to the staff as their family members.
Last year we had a very nice holiday round trip through beautiful Sri Lanka. Lasantha of Columbus Tours was our private guide and driver. He showed us great places and good restaurants. The trip was very well organized. We enjoyed it very much.
Columbus Tours are a fantastic company that made our holiday an amazing experience, everything work well and we got the most out of our time. We found them intuitive to our requirements and we never needed to ask – everything was just done. We got the best of everything from seats at a show to tea tasting. Thank you
We had a wonderful stay in Sri Lanka in March of this year. The whole place is interesting, the scenery breath taking, the people warm and friendly.
We felt taken care of for the whole trip, which was well organised, but not invasive.
Lasantha was our driver and at not time did we have any concerns as he remained calm and relaxed at all times.
We would recommend Sri Lanka in general and Columbus Tours in particular for a wonderful holiday.
We have just enjoyed a great 6 day trip in Sri Lanka! Our Chauffeur, Lasantha, was fantastic at looking after us always making sure that we were comfortable. Safe and professional driving and a knowledgable guide throughout our travels. Having Lasantha bring us around from Kandy to the West Coast has made the trip so stress free and enjoyable. We would certainly use Columbus again and highly recommend their expert services. Thanks Columbus and especially to Lasantha for making our trip one we will never forget! Rachel & Nick
We had the most wonderful honeymoon in beautiful Sri Lanka. This country is heaven on earth and we feel truly lucky to have visited. Columbus Tours were exceptional, as was our guide Chanaka. Please don’t be put off visiting as a result of the terrorist attacks. Terrorism can happen anywhere – London, Paris, Madrid to name but a few, have all been victim to it. Sri Lanka is so rich in culture, wildlife and the people are wonderful. We felt totally safe on our visit and would love to visit again in the future.
We had the most fantastic family holiday to Sri Lanka with Columbus Tours. Our driver Priyal made our holiday even more special. It really is the most magical country and has something for all ages. The people, the food and the scenery are spectacular. Looking forward to returning in the future. Claire and family
Their efficient and personalised service, the friendliness and expertise of their personnel. Will always travel with them in Sri Lanka.
Our trip to Sri Lanka with Columbus yours was the best holiday we have ever been on. We will return as soon as we can with our daughter. We love Sri Lanka and Ananda is an amazing tour guide!
I returned last week from a fabulous trip partly organised by Columbus travel. I can not recommend them highly enough. The organisation was first class and My driver was exceptional. His name is Prassad and over the 10 days I was with him he became a friend. His knowledge of the country and his attention to my needs was first class and he’s a top bloke with it!
Well Done. Hope to be back to watch some cricket soon!
We travelled as a group of 14 for a wedding in Hikkaduwa. The drivers took us to many places, they were always polite informative and helpful, and helped make our holiday exceptional. The drivers were Priyal and Ananda, we cannot recommend them highly enough. Columbus tours should be proud of them. ( ps give them a bonus) Anne and Chris the oldies of the group.
Friendly and attentive staff, full range of services!
Fantastic tour around Sri Lanka and we had a brilliant tour guide Chaminder, he had amazing knowledge of the county and we enjoyed learning about the culture and the amazing sites. Thank you
Great 2 week tour around Sri Lanka with our driver, guide and teacher, Roshan Dissanayke.
What he knew about his home land was amazing.
Hi all Sri Lanka needs you…..please do not stay away because of the recent terror attacks; Sri Lanka is a beautiful country and the people are so inviting, charming and proud. At Columbus Tours you will be well looked after throughout your journey around this magnificent country. I can also highly recommend a stay with the Ceylon Tea Trails. Don’t delay make your next overseas holiday in Sri Lanka
We traveled to Sri Lanka in April 2019 and our tour guide was Lasantha. Lasantha made our stay in Sri Lanka very special, we learnt so much about the country in such a short space of time. He was happy to answer the millions of questions that we had and he even climbed Sigiriya rock with us so he could tell us about the history during our climb. The trip was so well organised and without columbus tours we wouldn’t have known to do any of the amazing trips that we did.
I highly recommend Columbus tours and Lasantha as a tour guide.
I look forward to returning in the near future and will definitely be using Columbus tours again.