Practical information : Accomodation Sri Lanka
Budget & Tips
There are many options: large hotels, some of which are privileged for tour operators, mid-range establishments and small unpretentious guesthouses. In the cities and at the main tourist destinations, you will find large international hotels. Elsewhere, accommodation may be more basic, but you can always find
but you can always find accommodation in acceptable conditions of comfort. Rates are quite high due to the high demand for tourism. Moreover, these rates vary upwards (multiplied by two or three) or downwards depending on whether or not you book during the tourist season. As far as the number of stars of the establishments is concerned, apart from the 5 stars which are the current top of the range, do not rely on them systematically. They are attributed by the Sri Lankan tourist office, but there are disparities between establishments with the same level of comfort. Finally, remember that the term hotel is most often used to designate a gargote where you can eat for a few rupees. It is only from a certain category of accommodation onwards that we will speak of a hotel proper. Here are the most common types of accommodation in Sri Lanka
The palaces are present in the big cities, along the ocean but also near the historical sites. This type of establishment, popular with groups, offers impeccable comfort. Of course, the rates are much lower if you go through a tour operator
The resorts come in several levels of comfort and will also offer you a comfortable stay. Some are luxurious, especially on the west and east coasts, and provide a high level of service.
Resthouses are increasingly popular with travelers looking for a friendly setting and a cozy interior. They are generally old colonial houses. They are very popular during the tourist season. Rates and comfort can vary considerably from one to another
Guesthouses, theoretically cheaper than resthouses, offer rooms in traditional houses and in the homes of local people. Again, rates and comfort vary widely
Dormitory beds are mainly found in the seaside resorts popular with young tourists
To be booked
Due to the high number of tourists, it is advisable to always book your accommodation in advance, except in low season for long term travelers who are satisfied with small guesthouses. In high season, reservations are essential.
What's very local
You will probably be surprised to see that in most hotels on the island you will find sheets... but rarely blankets! Some accommodations do have blankets, so check your closets, or ask at the reception desk.
Tipping is not compulsory but is almost systematic. When it comes to luggage handlers or porters, count on 100 Rs (150 to 200 Rs to mark a real satisfaction). These amounts are obviously to be reconsidered when you are in a very large hotel.
For food lovers
Breakfastsare usually included, with a few exceptions. A local breakfast usually consists of fresh fruit and a curry to be enjoyed with string hoppers, accompanied by a hot drink. Most tourist establishments offer Western breakfasts of varying quality. Large hotels and resorts generally offer buffet style meals where there is something for everyone.
Smoking is prohibited in public places, but you will often find an ashtray if your room has a balcony. Some hotels still offer smoking rooms, especially in Colombo. What could be more pleasant than sleeping in a room where the carpet and the curtains are impregnated with the smell of cigarette smoke... So, smokers and non-smokers, avoid these rooms!
Beware of tuk tu ktouts who want to take you to a super cheap hotel, they always get a commission, and this will be added to the room rate.
Be careful, in some hotels, the calls are recorded on a computer for each room, so check every night (especially the night of your arrival) the amount of your communications, because if the previous customer has not paid his, you will have to pay for them (same for the contents of the bar). International calls and faxes (also long distance) are usually heavily charged by hotels