I visited Sri Lanka last December, and due to popular demand from my accommodation guide, I’ve written one for Sri Lanka as well (check out what I wrote about South Africa here).
Sri Lanka was quite a challenge as I had started my research late and the ones that I was interested in were fully booked out! Most of the places were either too expensive or slightly dingy. I’m not particularly picky with my accommodations but I do appreciate good lodging that are also value for money. Nonetheless, I was pretty satisfied with the finds given the little time I had. Hope whoever reading this will find this useful.
Oh by the way, most of the prices quoted in this list is inclusive of breakfast, some even dinner.
The same disclaimer applies: the prices I quote in SGD are what I paid for during my trip, per person, per night. Prices for accommodation are seasonal (and there might be promotions to take into account as well) and hence you should not rely entirely on my quotation. Please check with the respective hosts for their most current rates if you are planning a stay with them.
Anuradhapura is a good place to begin if you want to visit the UNESCO sites in Sri Lanka but there isn’t much lodging options available. My travel buddy stumbled upon London Palace, showed me the price and pictures and I was sold. Indeed the place was as good as it had looked on picture. After a long drive from Colombo to the accommodation, I was ready to plop on the comfy bed they prepped for us with blankets and cloth twirled into creative shapes. The place is tucked away in a secluded corner of Anuradhapura. They serve pretty decent Sri Lanka dinner and they were very generous with the sides.
How much I paid: SGD 21
(Rs 4500/$34 per room)
photo credits: London Palace
One great thing about Sundaras Resort is the location. It’s literally walking distance from the Golden Rock Temple. Plus, they are known to serve really good food. Out of the 3 nights, we had our dinner there twice. The room we stayed in was really big. we EACH had a double bed. The owner of the Resort, Damien, is a pretty cool dude too. Have a chat with him when you’re there!
How much I paid: SGD 34
(Rs 7,000/$54 per room)
photo credits: Sundaras Resort and Tripadvisor
It is the consensus of both my travel buddy and I that Elegant Hotel was our favourite accom in Sri Lanka in terms of budget, room, service, view and food. YOU WAKE UP AND HAVE BREAKFAST WITH THE MOUNTAINOUS VIEW. It is slightly out of the way but well worth the extra distance from Kandy Town. The hotel staff will be more than happy to call a tuk tuk for you anyway if you need one. Read my guide for tuk tuks here.
How much I paid: SGD 25
(Rs 5,300/$40 per room)
photo credits: Tripadvisor
We paid slightly more for this place because it was a treat for my birthday. The staff were very warm, I even had a cake delivered to my room! For the price we paid, they have rooms with a nice balcony, and some others with a jacuzzi – obviously I picked the latter.
How much I paid: SGD 78
(Rs 16,300/$125 per room)
photo credits: Unique Cottages and my camera
We did not realise we had to climb up to our accommodation even before we climbed Adam’s Peak. However, we did have a preview of the landscape when we managed our way up before the actual climb. The staff were really friendly and they even lent me their walking stick for the actual climb. Other than the stairs that were uncalled for, it is a good chill place to just relax before or after the climb.
How much I paid: SGD 33 including DINNER AND BREAKFAST.
(Rs 6,800/$52 per room)
photo credits: Tripadvisor
There are accommodations stretching along the Mirissa Beach but Palm Villa was hands down our best pick. Hidden away from the crowd, Palm Villa offers you the privacy and the serene beach life you desire. After our climb at Adam’s Peak, it was the perfect place for us to unwind. The food’s also really good and we have a sumptuous seafood bbq on our first night. The only setback was that we didn’t stay longer!
How much I paid: SGD 47
(Rs 9,900/$75 per room)
If you draw that curtain in the morning, you will see the ocean. Who doesn’t want to wake up to that view?!
photo credits: Palm Villa and my camera and myself as the model
There were plenty of boutique accommodation to choose from in Galle Fort and we settled for Seagreen accommodation. Not only were we not disappointed, we were also pleasantly surprised. The best was comfy, the room was clean and Seagreen Guesthouse came with a really nice roof terrace where you get a clear view of the sunset.
How much I paid: SGD 29
(Rs 6000/$46 per room)
photo credit: Seagreen and my camera
It was only when we got to Hikkaduwa that we realised the number of BnBs and guesthouses available (It didn’t seem that much when we researched online). Nonetheless, we were happy with Tandem Guesthouse. It was the right location for the places we wanted to go to (in between Hug Inn where they dish up really awesome food, and International Dive Centre, the main purpose for visit Hikkaduwa). The rooms were clean as well and the staff were really helpful.
How much I paid: SGD 32
(Rs 6,540/$50 per room)
photo credit: Tandem Guesthouse and my camera
Airbnb Host: Div
Colombo is sprawling with luxurious hotels and with the name they carry, it’s not doubt that they are out of my budget. Because we were going to stay in Colombo for 4 days, we decided to rent an apartment instead. I used my all time favourite accommodation hosting site Airbnb, and found Div who rented us his lovely apartment. We even have the chance to chat over lunch. There is a roof terrace that comes with the apartment where you get a perfect view of the city and the Indian Ocean. Would definitely recommend his place as an alternative to travellers on a smaller budget.
How much I paid: SGD 43
(Rs 8,970/$69 per apartment)
photo credits: my camera and Airbnb
The accommodations for this post may not be as “wow” as those I found in South Africa, but the staff and people I met were kind and friendly and they made my stay very enjoyable. Most of the options are pocket-friendly for travellers who seek decent accommodation on a smaller budget. If you’re visiting Sri Lanka, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. If you aren’t, consider visiting won’t you? The people will welcome you with open arms.
Peace & Love,