More tourists are visiting Sri Lanka than ever before. But if you want to dodge the crowds, you could always sign up for a 10-day, 1000-mile self-drive tuk-tuk rally. What’s the worst that could happen?

It’s a Monday afternoon and I’m watching my brother, Matt, have a mild nervous breakdown. We’re lost in a tangle of spaghetti-nest back roads in rural Sri Lanka.

He’s nearly driven our tuk-tuk into two separate walls in just 10 minutes. “I think something’s wrong with the front wheel,” he stammers. I coax him out of the driver’s seat, inspect the front wheel (to check if it’s been put on sideways) and offer to take over.

A gaggle of local kids is laughing at us. Partly, I imagine, a result of our bad driving. And partly because Matt is dressed as a zebra and I am dressed as a giraffe. If we hadn’t already been driving for six hours, if the light wasn’t waning, and if I wasn’t lost in Sri Lanka with my brother, I’d probably be laughing too.