Question: Can I drive in Sri Lanka? Should I drive in Sri Lanka? Do I want to drive in Sri Lanka? Is renting a car or getting a driver better?
Answer: NOOOOO!!!!! You do not want to drive in Sri Lanka. Trust me, I am from Malaysia. We have some crazy driving in Malaysia. Been to some crazy traffic country before. In comparison, I would still advice you to get a driver and enjoy the scenery than driving yourself. I repeat, DO NOT drive in Sri Lanka. Especially if you only have 3days to spend.
(1=Easy peasy/Australia, 2=Not Bad/Singapore , 3=Average/Malaysia, 4=Don’t Risk you life/Vietnam, 5=Death wish/India)
1. They don’t really follow the lanes. So, for a 2 lanes road, they would usually become 3 lanes, with the tuk-tuk’s driving in the middle. And the cars will drive in a zig-zag manner between the 2 lanes, depending which lanes they think is faster.
2. They have alot of tuk-tuk’s. Similar to Thailand, their driving manner is “fantabulous”. They don’t follow lanes, stop when they want, pick up or drop off customers in the middle of the roads, and basically do what ever that want on the road. It’s a nightmare.
3. Honks. Honks. Honks (Which reminds me Hanoi, Vietnam. With less motorbikes)
4. People like to cross the road out of no where. Hence, constant emergency breaks. 2/7 vomited due to car sickness.
5. Over taking at double lines. What lines? Honk, and overtake. Even when there is a lorry coming from opposite directions @@
6. Elephants and cows on the road. Elephants!!! Wild elephants. So, no driving after 7pm. Else, you might get crushed.
7. No GPS, Limited internet connectivity. We initially plan to get our own car, but the agency do not have GPS because they run out of GPS but we thought, never mind we can use Waze or Google Map. Luckily, we change and got a driver instead. We later found out that in many places, there is no coverage & internet connectivity, hence Waze or Google Map will not work.
8. Police. Speed Trap. Every few kilometers there will be police block.
Just get a driver. Put your feet up and enjoy the ride hahaha Plus, you do not need to waste time searching for directions and figure things out if you only have 3days to spend. The tourist site is very far from each other.
It’s actually cheap to get a driver. We spend around LKR 30,000 for 3days, share amoung 7 people.
Milage covered: Wadduwa-Kandy-Dambulla-Sigiria-Polonaruwa-Dambulla-Airport-Colombo
Driver, with a Van. Charges is: 55 LKR per kilometer. (Min cap. per day 100km). Per night, just tip the driver LKR 1,000 for acoomodation.
If you rent a car, the charges is:
Standard Car – Toyota Axio
CAR RENTAL: 3days
Car Rental – LKR 23,950
Deposit – LKR 50,000
Driving Permit USD 35
Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions. I will try my best to answer.