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“Excellent Escape”
Review of Borderlands

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Borderlands
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 5, 2013

We've been to Borderlands two times now since moving to Sri Lanka, and can't think of a better place to come with family and friends to relax AND have a great adventure. The staff make you feel very welcome, the food is excellent (a good mix of western and local) and the 'luxury' camping is perfect for enjoying the outdoors experience without being uncomfortable! Having a three year old in such a situation could prove to be tricky, but they cater the activities appropriately for families and the trained guides always make you feel safe. I have done these types of activity centres before in the UK and Europe, and I can honestly say that this is the safest, most laid back place of its type I have been too - whilst still being able to try some very exciting and adventurous stuff!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank digjamman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BorderlandsL, Sales and Marketing Manager at Borderlands, responded to this reviewResponded May 6, 2013

Dear digjamman
Thank you so much for your wonderful review, and thank you so much for returning to Borderlands for the second time - I mentioned your comments to Diana and she says she was sad to miss you, and that she will most definitely have to return again so she can spend time with your daughter again! I am sure this will not be your last visit from Kandy, and we look forward to having you stay with us again!
Thank you again for your kind words.
The Borderlands Team

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235 - 241 of 367 reviews

Reviewed May 1, 2013

We arrived at Borderlands for a 2 night stay. As a family of 5, we were spending most of our budget here ($600USD a night). We booked it almost entirely on Tripadvisor reviews. We had tried to reserve our activities in advance but was told it will be done on arrival. I had pushed this point a few times, since we really had our hopes up for some activities and were unsure what we could do with the children. Everything here was a disappointment, except the food. There was no staff to do the activities we wanted and ended up sitting in the longhouse all afternoon with nothing to do. There are no games available as stated. My husband spent 45 min getting a movie going as the sound system and projector were also in disrepair. The tent was old and the water cistern was empty. We also had safety issues with rafting, medical care and walking around the grounds in the rain.

Borderlands ended up acknowledging their faults and gave us 1 night refund. While I would much rather of had the experience all the other reviewers had, we accepted it as the best of a bad situation. What prompted me to write this was the wait of the refund was nearly a month. After a frustrated email by me, I received a reply from the owner that has warranted a "BE WARE" advise from me.

If you have limited time in Sri Lanka, as we did, I wouldn't bet on Borderlands. They are obviously understaffed and going through an growth crisis they haven't figured out yet.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank 5familytraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BorderlandsL, Sales and Marketing Manager at Borderlands, responded to this reviewResponded May 6, 2013

Dear 5FamilyTraveller

Many of the matters you have addressed both myself and the MD spent considerable time discussing with you on the phone whilst you were staying with us, and we agreed without any fuss that we would refund you a nights' stay.

I strongly dispute your claim that you were not able to organise your activities in advance – you arrived very late on the first night therefore no activities could be arranged on that day which we were all aware of. The second day I had confirmed with you directly that you would be white water rafting and canyoning that morning - this is a 4-5 hour activity, which means you are back in camp by lunch. This is part of the package which includes UP to two activities per day. Because you were insistent on doing another activity that afternoon our guides arranged for you to kayak that afternoon but as it was raining heavily you decided not to go.

Our safety record at Borderlands is incredible and our reviews on Tripadvisor attest to this, both before your stay and continue to be so following your stay. However rafting has certain inherent risks, and whilst you do not specify what the incident that happened was, nature has it's own way of running a raft trip and can’t be fully controlled, even by the most experienced guides, so swims can happen and rafts can and do flip.

With regards to the tent, the tent you were allocated is our largest tent that comfortably sleeps 5. It is not an old tent, far from it. It is a tent which we have been offering families for the past 18 months with no previous complaints. Our camp is not a "luxury" camp, our tents are made to withstand the elements and in the tropics the tents themselves are functional, not fancy.

Your grievance about the refund was not with Borderlands, but with the agent who you booked the stay with. We gave the agent a full credit for your stay so it was with them and not us you should have addressed this matter with, and your implication that somehow we were reluctant to make good with our promise of a refund is both misleading and unfair.

We of course regret that your stay with us was disappointing, as we have prided ourselves on a clean sweep of overwhelmingly positive reviews over the past 12 months. These past guest experiences do not negate your negative experience, however it may well be the case that Borderlands simply was not for you.

Regards
Gwen Stephens Jones
Sales and Marketing Manager

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Reviewed April 21, 2013

I spent a great night at Borderlands in early April 2013. I arrived at camp around noon and was treated to a wonderful lunch of pasta and salad before I was shown to my tent for the night. The tent was beautiful - comfortable beds and a great view. My friends and I changed and we headed onto the river for four hours of rafting, swimming, and canyoning. The canyoning was great, it was so much fun to slip and slide down the rocks.

Dinner that night was amazing, and I was lulled to sleep by the sound of the babbling brook down below.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank aseoconnor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BorderlandsL, Sales & Marketing at Borderlands, responded to this reviewResponded April 25, 2013

Dear Aseoconnor,

Thanks for your positive review! Really glad you enjoyed our camp, food and activities. Make sure to have a clown suit handy should you ever find yourself surrounded by a few T Rexs. You never know when they might attack--in Colombo, or Trinco. To answer your YAMU post (thank you for that), we should have the new website up in the near future.

All the best,
The Borderlands Team

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Reviewed April 19, 2013

I like Borderlands. We spent 2 & 1/2 days there and it was fantastic (again), though I can't keep up with 15 year olds anymore. Wade and the crew provided a tailored package to do whatever we wanted. We spent hours with the guides learning and improving kayaking skills, we ran the river, we played in rapids, we went canyoning. And the afternoon I spent chilling in the long house was soooooo peaceful. But what is most noticeable, is that Borderlands pays real attention to safety. I have rafted, and kayaked through SE Asia and Australia and the Bordelands crew are 2nd to none.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank David F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BorderlandsL, Sales & Marketing at Borderlands, responded to this reviewResponded April 25, 2013

Dear David F,

Thanks for coming back to Borderlands! Yes, safety is our top priority--we make sure that every rafting trip has a safety kayaker out front and an internationally trained guide, as well as a safety briefing on best practices for any activity. Of course, if we can improve in any way, let us know! After a full day of hard play, the longhouse is the perfect place to come back to and relax. Hoping to see you again for another custom tailored stay with us.

Best Wishes,
The Borderlands Team

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Reviewed April 19, 2013

We spent 2 nights at Borderlands in Kitulgala and took part in the rafting, canyoning and abseiling - we loved every second. From the incredibly friendly welcome to the brilliant tree-house style "rooms" to the DELICIOUS food (we conveniently arrived at lunchtime) we couldn't say a bad word about it.

The whole team made us feel very welcome whether we were chilling out back in the Long House or on an activity and we felt safe and were well-informed by our guides at all times. We spent 2 weeks in Sri Lanka, travelling a fair bit around the hill country and south coast, and Borderlands was definitely a highlight.

I would recommend anyone to go. I went with a good friend but there were also a number of families with children of a range of ages and the one thing everyone had in common was that we were all having the time of our lives!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank Anna K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BorderlandsL, Sales & Marketing at Borderlands, responded to this reviewResponded April 25, 2013

Dear Anna K,

Thanks for you review, and glad that you had an excellent stay with us. We agree -- Borderlands is a great place for anyone to visit who wants a good bit of adventure. We do our best to make sure our camp is accommodating from independent travelers to families with young children. Thank you for commenting on our food and activities as well. If we can improve in any way, please offer your suggestions, thanks! Looking forward to having you back,

The Borderlands Team

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Reviewed March 28, 2013

Spent a wonderful two nights at Borderland in February.The tents were very good and the sound of the river so close was magical.Decided to try the white water rafting and thoroughly enjoyed it.Tuition before we set off down the river was great.Also enjoyed two lovely long walks in the vicinity of the camp.Amazing scenery and on one of the walks we enjoyed a dip in a cool rock pool high on the hillside.Good food was needed after all our adventures and this we certainly had.Staff were very friendly and helpful.All in all a thoroughly enjoyable and memorable time was spent in a relaxed atmosphere.Thank you all very much.

Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
Thank Rosamund B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BorderlandsL, Sales & Marketing at Borderlands, responded to this reviewResponded April 1, 2013

Dear Rosamund B,

Thanks for reviewing us positively, and glad you had a great time with us rafting and enjoying our local hikes--there are some truly special places around. Please let us know if there is anything at all we can do to improve. Hope to see you again here in Sri Lanka!

Best Wishes,
The Borderlands Team

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Reviewed March 25, 2013

We were so relieved to find Borderlands! After an unfortunate series of events resulting from poor behaviour on the behalf of other extremely pushy rafting providers, we were made to feel comfortable and safe in the hands of the well trained, experienced staff at Borderlands. We spent the day rafting down the stunning Kitulgala river and rock jumping! What a great way to end an otherwise odd time spent in the town of Kitulgala!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank EmilyBremner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BorderlandsL, Sales & Marketing at Borderlands, responded to this reviewResponded April 1, 2013

Dear Emily Brenner,

Thanks for your review--and I'm glad that things worked out for you with us. Such a shame that you had an unfortunate experience here in Kithulgala with some of the other providers. Sounds like you had a great time rafting and canyoning! Please do come back some day.

Best Wishes,
The Borderlands Team

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Additional Information about Borderlands

Address: Hatton Road, Kitulgala, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Location: Sri Lanka > Sabaragamuwa Province > Kitulgala
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 15 Specialty Lodging in Kitulgala
Price Range: $142 - $148 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Borderlands Adventure Eco-Lodge offers comfortable riverfront accommodation, in 4 tents and 11 cabanas (3 of which have en suite facilities) which are fully kitted with beds (which can be arranged from singles to doubles, with up to 5 beds able to fit in a family cabin) and have electricity throughout so guests can charge their laptops, phones and cameras. Each tent and cabana is located on a wooden platform with a private deck, with views overlooking the Kelani River and the surrounding mountains. All meals are served in The Long House, a great place to chill out at the end of the day. A full music system means guests can listen to their Ipods. Evening Movie Nights are offered, which is a great hit with kids. As well as offering accommodation, Borderlands runs white water rafting, canyoning, and white water and flat water kayaking activities from our ecolodge, and offers the largest number of sit-in and sit-on-top kayaks in Sri Lanka. Other activities include abseiling, hiking, biking and swimming. ... more   less 
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