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Indian-origin Sri Lankan tour guide judged world's best by UK magazine

October 15, 2011 - Colombo

A Sri Lankan tour guide of Indian-origin has been selected as the world's best guide by the British travel magazine Wanderlust.

Noel Bruno Dawsan says he is delighted and will help disadvantaged people into further education with his bursary.

Dawsan, who comes from a Tamil family of impoverished tea pickers in a remote Sri Lankan town, said he was hailed by the judges as a "true cultural ambassador," the BBC reports.

Wanderlust collected feedback from tourists to collect candidates for a shortlist of five. The magazine then sent a judge who masqueraded as a tourist in order to decide who should get the award, the report said. The difference with Bruno is that instead of just hearing about his country, he made you feel about it," judge Mark Carwardine, author and wildlife expert, said.

Dawsan says the award is not only a personal achievement, but an honour to Sri Lanka at a time when the country is struggling to improve its international image after decades of brutal civil war.


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