1. Mateusz Pryczkowski from Poland
Before going to Sri Lanka - my every trip was looking similar - buying flight tickets, renting a car(and driving on my own), going to a plan with getting some news from the internet and guide books and was OK.
But when I came to Sri Lanka I decided for the first time to hire a guide/driver. My main reason (in moment of making this decision) was the common opinion, that driving on Sri Lanka's roads is nightmare. Basing on my many reviews I decided to contact and hire Jagath and it was my best decision during this trip and here is many reasons of it:
1. Driving there would be nightmare for me(so it is truth) - I think, that I would deal with it, but for sure it would be really stressful for me and for sure I wouldn't rest. And driving with Jagath is a pleasure - his Van is really spacey and comfortable, and Jagath style of driving is really calm and safe
2. Guiding - if we would go alone, then we wouldn't know half of things of visiting places, and most of these info we would quickly forget. With Jagath - we knew all important things and if we had doubts or wanted to know something more - he was always able to answer our questions. Also his English is very good - speaking really fluently.
3. Planning - I had my initial plans for Sri Lanka, and after talking with Jagath we little adjusted it. Also during trip I requested few changes and all was done without issues. And finally I believe, that I've seen all things, that I wanted and I did quite full trip around Sri Lanka
4. Other infos - during our trip I had a lot of additional questions about Sri Lanka, Buddhism and life here and Jagath is real 'repository of knowledge' - he was sharing with us all needed info and thanks to this I have much bigger/deeper knowledge about these topics
I can highly recommend Jagath and his services. He is really professional, experience, knowledgeable guide and driver and this time with him was real pleasure.
2. Michael Gafoor from the UK
Jagath has twenty years of experience of guiding tours around Sri Lanka. This means that he understands the needs of different groups of people and knows exactly what they will like and not like. So for our group aged from 1 to 75 with a range of specific needs from car seats to mobility issues, he was great.
Sri Lanka although small it can take time to get from place to place. Jagath was great at planning our journeys and stopping at great places and restaurants on the way. He is incredibly patient , even when the toddler was screaming and the 4 year old was making a mess in his pristine van.
We have been to Sri Lanka many times and Jagath was by far the the most reliable and safe driver we’ve had. You will very safe in his hands.
3. Mr. and Mrs. Dvořák, Czech Republic
We experienced a sightseeing tour of Sri Lanka at the turn of February and March 2020. We were very pleasantly surprised, this trip exceeded our expectations in terms of experiences, organization, food, and accommodation. The greatest credit for our experience goes to our guide Chaminda Jagath Wijesiri, who took very active care of us all the time, was extremely helpful, and knowledgeable, was able to explain everything to us clearly, guided us through the sights beautifully and was also funny and very nice. Jagath speaks very good English and has a history degree, so he can answer a lot of questions about history, politics, but also religion, and lifestyle in Sri Lanka. We would like to take this opportunity to thank him very much. We can definitely recommend it with a clear conscience to anyone interested in a guide to Sri Lanka, he is trusted and will arrange everything that is needed. He is simply a man in his place.
4. Gina Campbell-Harris from the UK
Despite the ongoing economic crisis during this month, Jagath navigated us across the country in great comfort and safety.
We started our tour in Sigirya where he gave us a highly informative tour of the Rock and it's history then on to an Elephant safari. This was followed by a day long trip to Pollonaruwa where we saw great historical sites. From Sigirya we went on to Kandy and the Tea plantations finishing our tour down on the southern coast.
The current worrying situation in Sri Lanka, fuel shortages as well as sky rocketing fuel prices etc., demonstrations blocking roads, is extremely concerning, but throughout our trip Jagath was steady and reassuring - he would arrive punctually every day with a smile!
We highly recommend Jagath! Best wishes to him and his family and to the people of Sri Lanka.
5. Phil & Fay Hawkey
Here is my testimonial:
We travelled around Sri Lanka in November 2011 and had a wonderful time. The success of our holiday and the fondness of our memories for Sri Lanka and its people were largely down to D L B M C Jagath Wijesiri, BA.
We are quite seasoned travellers having visited 70 countries world-wide. Our preference is always to travel independently and we have used the services of tour guides many times before. Jagath is by far the best we have ever encountered!
Of course he does the basic things well but that is what you are paying for. His knowledge of the country, its history, peoples and culture are second to none. Where Jagath makes a huge difference is in the little things which really matter. Below are a few illustrations:
We found Jagath through an internet search and were initially impressed by his references. As soon as we booked his services he offered to help us with our pre-trip planning, making suggestions about our itinerary, travel times, accommodation arrangements etc. We were initially resistant to this but on reflection, every one of his ideas were better than decisions we had taken in our planning from the UK.
Jagath was incredibly sensitive to our needs, questioning us about the types of activities and sites that would appeal to us. At the end of each day we had an informal planning discussion for the following day. He was very flexible about timings, only ever pointing out delicately when we were trying to achieve ‘mission impossible’.
He was also hyper-sensitive to the personal things which matter, e.g. Sri Lanka has some unusual laws on the sale and consumption of alcohol. Retail sales outlets are hard to find, many hotels do not have bars and frequent religious holidays have an impact. A well timed question as to whether we had sufficient Lion Beer to see us through the coming evening was all it took!
Jagath was great in a crisis. One of our hotels could not accommodate us. He made one phone call and found us a perfectly good alternative.
We are not the best road travellers and Sri Lanka is a country where every driver, particularly of buses and lorries, seems to be trying for a place in the next Grand Prix! Jagath’s driving was safe and measured. He has the ability to anticipate problems and avoid them happening.
Jagath is a highly educated young man with excellent spoken English and a great sense of humour. His conversation is always interesting and he is very keen to learn about all manner of things. He has a very unassuming style and if you are very lucky, get him to tell you about his time as a Steward to a Buddhist monk – what a wonderful story.
Since returning to the UK we have been able to recommend Jagath to friends who have been as impressed as we were. What started for us as a straightforward relationship with a tour guide very quickly became a friendship. Jagath Wijesiri is a credit to himself, his family and his country.
Phil & Fay Hawkey, September 2012
126 Penylan Road, Cardiff, UK, CF23 5RD
7. Iain McInally and Family
We couldn't have been luckier to find Jagath as a guide and driver for the first part of our holiday in Sri Lanka. From the start he was helpful,courteous and highly professional. As the days passed we were also able to discover what good company he was and enjoyed his sense of humor. Very well-informed and always discreet, he was the perfect host in this wonderful country
We highly recommend exploring Sri Lank with him.
Iain McInally and family
Looking for a reliable English-speaking driver+guide?
We were in Sri Lanka in November 2005 where we travelled for 14 days all around the country. Before we went to Sri Lanka I found on the net recommendations on a driver who I now, after my own experience, can warmly recommend to everybody who wants to see and learn about the "real" Sri Lanka.In case anybody needs a reliable, friendly and English speaking driver and registered guide here are his details. His name is Jagath and he can be contacted under the following mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Jagath has a comfortable and air-conditioned van. He speaks perfectly English, is professional, knowledgeable and will pick you up at the airport. His daily rate is reasonable and includes ALL guiding and car/van expenses. He is not only a driver but is also licensed guide which is in Lanka very mportant.
Enjoy your trip
E-mail : email@example.com
9. Meryl Moakes
I have been telling all my family and friends about my holiday in Sri Lanka this year. I have also told them that it was you, as the tour guide, who made it such a wonderful experience. Celia and I fully intend returning one day and we very much hope that you will be our guide once again. Throughout the tour you ensured that all our requests were attended to with efficiency and promptness. I have confidently recommended you to a few people who wish to visit Sri Lanka because I know that you would work very hard and in a very professional manner i order to make their holiday in Sri Lanka an unforgettable experience.
I wish you and your family all the very best.
10. Paul & Jacqueline
We visited Sri Lanka for 10 days in April 2012. We really enjoyed our holiday which gave a good impression of the wide variety of things you can see and do in this beautiful country. Jagath is a very reliable driver, will never over speed and brings you anywhere you like. His English is good and his knowledge about Sri Lanka in general and especially Buddhist temples is very good. During longer trips he would suggest some restaurant where we could eat and we never got ill and it was always tasty. He is very discreet and modest and will never sit at your table or force you to visit certain shops if you don't want. His van is in good condition, has proper seatbelt and easily fits a family of six people.
Paul & Jacqueline with 2 children (4/6 years), Muscat, April 2012
11. Fulya Kreusch
Dear Sri Lanka traveller,
As I know, it is not easy to find remotely a reliable tour-guide, who can drive you around Sri Lanka, I’d like to share our experience in Sri Lanka with you.
Jagath Wijesiri was recommended to us by a friend who travelled recently to Sri Lanka. From the point I have contacted Jagath, he has shown us that he is a professional and reliable tour guide. He responded to my e-mail with a confirmation of availability on those dates and a full back-up of his background. One day before our trip, he called me on my mobile to confirm the date and time of the flights and he was at the airport waiting for us when we arrived in Sri Lanka.
We were 2 couples and spent 12 days in Sri Lanka on the road with him. We were very pleased with his services; Jagath is an absolute fine person, very polite, honest, who tries to accommodate the needs to his customers fully, making the right suggestions for travel itineraries and the places to stay overnight. He speaks fluent English. At the time we were in Sri Lanka (Dec 2011), he had an air-conditioned Toyota van, well-kept and always clean. He is a very careful driver.
Jagath is one of the not too many authorized tour guides in Sri Lanka, which is an additional benefit because you do not need to look for a guide at the historical sites to assist you with the entrance or with the history of the site; Jagath handles it for you.
All in all, I’d like to thank Jagath again for his services and can recommend him to everyone, who wants to have an honest, competent, polite tour guide/driver in Sri Lanka.
You can verify me on Trip Advisor – my member name is: Fulyetta and my public profile are: www.tripadvisor.com/members/Fulyetta I attach a photo of Jagath with us, which was taken by my husband.
12. Mrs. Ilse Maria Bruckner (BDÜ) and Mr. Siegfried C. Fay M.A
This letter of recommendation is for presentation with any authorities or customers who wish to inquire about Mr. Chaminda Jagath Wijesiri´s qualities as a travel guide and a driver. Our company is a qualified and well-established language services agency in Germany, working in the fields of translating, certifying translated documents, interpreting, proof-reading, editing and working on book projects. I am a state-examined translator of English.
Together with my partner, Mr. Siegfried C. Fay M.A., I visited Sri Lanka from 16 December 2003 to 6 January 2004. Our visit had some defined purposes: we planned to meet a friend, a Buddhist monk, to work on a book project with him; we wanted to visit some universities and talk to heads of language departments; and we intended to have a look at possible business contacts with Sri Lankan companies. Of course we also wanted to travel through Sri Lanka to see this beautiful country, which we did about half of the time.
Mr. Wijesiri proved to be a most reliable, efficient, polite and helpful travel guide. His abilities as a driver are outstanding, especially from the perspective of foreigners who may not be used to the Sri Lankan style of driving. He was always there when needed and kept his appointments always on time. If the need arose to get any goods or any kinds of food or drink, he always knew where to find it, and he went on lots of useful errands for us. His recommendations of board and lodging during our trips through Sri Lanka were most useful, and we always felt well looked after. Moreover, his good knowledge of English and of the culture and history of his country were, together with his sense of humour, really entertaining. So we were always in the best of moods when travelling with him, and we felt that we could absolutely trust in him as he is really honest. At times we were accompanied by two Buddhist monks (the well-known author Venerable S. Dhammika from Australia and our Austrian friend, Samanera Pajalo), and they also much appreciated his services.
Summing up we can say that Mr. Wijesiri´s service was excellent, and we can highly recommend him as a travel guide and a driver to any company, group or individual who may plan to travel through Sri Lanka.
We wish to thank him for his outstanding commitment on his job, and we are wishing him much success for his future career and his private life.
Mrs. Ilse Maria Bruckner (BDÜ) and Mr. Siegfried C. Fay M.A
Tel : 06652 – 992 952, Mobile : 0170 – 804 14 93,Fax : 06652 – 992 954
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org, Web Site : www.bruckner-sprachendienste.de
13. Mr. Richard Allen & Mrs. Elaine Allen
Dear Chaminda Jagath Wijesiri,
On the recommendation of the Buddhist Publication Society in Kandy, my wife and I engaged Jagath Wijesiri as our driver for a visit to Sri Lanka in October 2004.
We were very happy with Mr Wijesiri’s services. His vehicle was well maintained and internally clean, and his driving throughout was careful and considerate to other road users. His knowledge of the road network and of attractive stops along the way was excellent, and he always receptive to our suggestions. His background in Sociology studies enabled him to comment effectively on much of what we saw, which added to our enjoyment. We had read that many drivers would be looking for commission on clients’ purchases at every opportunity but Mr Wijesiri was protective of our interests when unreasonably high prices were quoted. As a result of his efficient and friendly approach, we enjoyed a holiday that was very interesting but also extremely relaxing. We have already recommended Mr Wijesiri to other potential visitors to Sri Lanka.
Mr Richard Allen & Mrs Elaine Allen
6 Stoke Road, Winchester, Hampshire SO23 7ET, UK
Tel : 0044 1962 863380
14. Lee and Sarah
Dear Chaminda Jagath Wijesiri,
We contacted Jagath after finding his details on the Virtual tourist website. We contacted quite a number of drivers and Jagath was the first driver to respond with all of the details and price stated very clearly, We had read about some drivers charging extras for things like petrol and tolls but Jagath was very transparent with his prices.
When we arrived in Sri Lanka we were a little apprehensive if our driver would in fact turn up. But rest assured Jagath was right on time and had been waiting a while for us. Immediately he advised us to change some money. Within seconds he proved to be a star.
Jagath has a very pleasant, polite and sensitive demeanour. He takes note of your mood and asks the right questions. As we were on our honeymoon he gave us time and we didn't feel like our space was being compromised even though we were travelling as a group (as such).
He advised us so much. I think for the costs we paid Jagath we actually saved in the small things along the way. Where to buy local goods from, chatting to locals to make sure we were not getting ripped off and generally acting almost like a guardian for us.
We have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Jagath and feel blessed and very luck to have found him. Chances ares we may never return to Sri Lanka (as we have done it now!) - but if we did, we would hire Jagath again with a doubt.
Lee and Sarah Booth Dec 13
15. Patrick Klassen from Canada
My family, including my young daughter, hired Jagath for a total of 6 days to travel from Negombo to Dambulla and Kandy. Jagath provides a child’s seat for our 4 year old, and was a very careful driver. He accommodated us well, and provided some good connections for safari and other excursions. Highly recommend, especially for families with young kids. Jagath is an owner/driver - not a large tour company with many drivers.