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Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

cornwall
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8 posts
2 reviews
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Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

Hi there,

My husband and I are off to stay at the Royal Palms on the 12th October. Like any reviews, you read good and bad - but personally I always believe its down to the individuals to make the most of their holidays, whatever. If anyone has any feed back I'd love to hear from them about the hotel.

One concern is that perhaps Kalutara is a bit remote, in the sense that its a 2 day trip to Kandy? I'm really interested in finding out if there are any places close by to visit ie waterfalls, parks etc. And also if anyone can recommend a local guide for us when we get there.

We are both really into curries and would love advice on where we can go locally ie restuarants/cafes for the real stuff!!

Hope to hear from anyone (:-)) soon

Thanks

Caroline

Cambridge
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30 posts
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1. Re: Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

Hi

I have just been to Kultara and we were all inclusive which was a good thing as couldn't really see any places to eat, Kandy is only about 4.5 hours from Kultara, but so you can see everything people recommened a two day day trip, we did it over two days and saw losts of different things it can be done in a day but its tiring,

Ahungalla, Sri Lanka
Destination Expert
for Sri Lanka, Kalutara, Ahungalla
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2. Re: Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

Hi Caroline

I cannot comment on your choice of hotel as i have never stayed there, so it would be unfair of me to do so.

Kalutara, yes, it is remote from the usual main tourist attractions in Sri Lanka, but then most hotels and resorts are!

The town itself is a large sprawling one, and there are lots of local restaurants in which to find the "real" hot spicey curries, but having said this, your hotel will also have these on the menu most days too, and cooked by local chefs too, remember one thing here, what is not eaten by the guests at hotels...., well the staff have it for thier supper, so quality assured here i think, don't you?

Trip to Kandy?

Yes, it can be done in a day, but i will be very honest with you here, and it would really be a shame if you were to try this, firstly it is around 4 hours from your hotel, and by the time you got there, you would not have time to see much of this lovely city, so i really would advise that you do this as a 2 day, 1 night trip, then you will see much more, plus of course, you can see the elephants at the Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage too, this is nearby to Kandy, but to get the best from a visit there, then just after breakfast would be the best time to visit (10.00 am ).

The are other places near to where you will be staying, for example, the Kanga river cruise, but if you want to see more of the local Sri Lanka, then you really should consider a 2 day trip away from the area.

National parks?

The best, Yala is around 5 to 6 hours drive away from Kalutara, so again an overnight stop would be invlolved if you want to get the best from this, best times to visit here is early morning, or late afternoon, evening, then it is much cooler, so more chance to see the animals there.

Local guide?

Yes, i can give you the name, phone numbers, and e-mail address of a trusted driver/guide who will look after all your needs during your holiday, he actually lives in Kalutara, not far from your hotel, so if you want his details, please e-mail me at: davidjstockwell@aol.com, and i will pass on his details to you.

Costs?

His costs are around £30 to £35 per day,(not including hotels for overnight) this is per vehicle, and not per person, so really very reasonable compared with what tour companies will charge you, i trust him, and recommend him 100%, having used him several times myself in the past, and will be using him again when i return to Sri Lanka again this November.

I hope this has helped, but do feel free to ask more questions, and i will be only too pleased to help where i can.

Regards

Dave

cornwall
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8 posts
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3. Re: Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

Dave

Thanks very much for the info - I will email you from work. One thing I plan to do is to take a suitcase over with things like crayons, pencils, sweets for the children. Do you think this would be considered patronising?

Thanks

Caroline

Ahungalla, Sri Lanka
Destination Expert
for Sri Lanka, Kalutara, Ahungalla
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5,464 posts
9 reviews
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4. Re: Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

Caroline

Taking gifts for the local kids is a great idea, they will just love you for it, to see thier faces light up will let you know just how they feel.

But.... PLEASE DO NOT be tempted to pass money to them, it is very unlikely that it would go to those who you intended it for, but the things you have mentioned, will be VERY gratefully recieved by them.

To save yourself some trouble, and of course carrying too, you can buy the sweets or "bon bons" as the kids will call them locally in Kalutara , they can be bought from local shops there, and more likely to be the kids favourites too.

Pens & pencils ect?, a little tip here too, take a look through the wholesale lots pages on E-Bay, lots of bargains to be had here, and of course, more for the money you intend to spend, so more happy smiley faces in Sri Lanka.

And maybe something for the mums and dads too, at the end of your holiday, leave all unfinished toiltries ect behind for them, they are luxuries for some poorer people there, you will only throw them away probably anyway.

Regards

Dave

London, United...
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73 posts
13 reviews
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5. Re: Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

Hi Caroline.

First of all, the negative bit. The Royal Palms, I stayed there last month for 1 night, they had a lot of construction going on, (new roof) which you can avoid by day as it is a large hotel. However at 11-30 at night the workmen turned up again making a hell of a racket on the roof, when I complained at reception they denied any noise which was qyuite laughable as they had to raise their voices above the hammering to talk to me. When I continued to complain (calmly and with cause) they called security to eject me and threatened to call the Police to drag me from my family in the night.

Now I doubt that you will be treated like this, however dont complain.

You really should contact TravellerGuy for his driver as he recommended him to me also and he was fantastic.

We took pens, pencils to Sri Lanka and found it difficult to give away.

I would suggest you take a few from home and if you get thru them quickly then buy more out there, therefore helping the local economy further.

London
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25 posts
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6. Re: Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

Just got back from Kalutara (stayed at the Tangerine Beach next door to the Royal Palms). Royal Palms has a lovely swimming pool and the grounds are nice too. Beach hawkers are a bit of a pain but you get used to them.

I would recommend a day trip to Galle. You can stop at one of the turtle sanctuaries at Kosgoda on the way, then you can do a glass bottom boat trip further down the coast (where you will see a huge leatherback turtle if you are lucky, along with the usual reef-type fish). We also visited a moonstone mine on the return trip, which was very interesting. You will also witness a lot of tsunami damage along the coast - we were surprised to see that some people are still living in tents 20 months after the event.

Our rep was also offering a river trip and a canoeing/cycling excursion for the really intrepid/mad!!!

No experience of local restaurants as we were All Inclusive. There are several restaurants outside the Tangerine Beach hotel but we never saw anyone in them.

7. Re: Royal Palms, Kalutara - Sri Lanka in General

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