Anushka River Inn
97 Manju Sri Mawatha (River Side Road)
Phone: 0094 34 2275377 or 0094 34 5588512
Mobile: 0094 777 514031
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Stayed there: We didn’t! But read on…
Rates: â‚¬25 to â‚¬70 depending on single to triple, B&B to Full Board
As stated, we didn’t stay here but we used the restaurant twice and I just had to give it a plug.
The steak here is superb. Excellent. Lovely. The chicken ain’t half bad either. The chips are nice and salty, the veg fresh and juicy, the deserts mouthwatering and the fresh fruit juice… fresh, fruity and juicy.
As well as a nice riverside view, the service is friendly. The internet was a little pricey (300Rp per hour for dialup) but seeing as we couldn’t get on anywhere else in town it was better than nothing. A decent keyboard and a big screen made a welcome change as well.
That’s it, really. I’ve had a look at the rooms and if you have the cash this looks like a great place to stay as well.
River Road 5
Phone: 0094 34 5582530
Stayed there: December 30th and 31st 2006
Rates: We paid 2500 Sri Lankan Rupees per night including breakfast
We ended up here as the partner hotel (Sunil Lanka) up the road was full. As soon as we walked in, we decided to take the room. Clean, tidy, quiet and with a wonderful riverside chill-out area immediately out the back door.
The guest house is run by a couple of German ladies with Sri Lankan staff. We only ate breakfast there, but that was excellent (tea, toast, eggs of your choice, fresh fruit) and the menu seemed fairly good for other meals.
One bonus was the shower in the room. Easily the best we’ve encountered in South Asia to date! Brand new, it chucked out a hot but slow shower, or a powerful colder one. Very welcome after the tepid dribbles we’d had in some places.
The bed was comfy, though like every bed in Sri Lanka was too short for us! A mosquito net was provided and the doors were secure from larger intruders. The only problem was that all the rooms had double beds – no twins. We picked the one we did as there were at least two separate mattresses. Apparently one room has a water bed!
Overall, very pleasant and relaxing indeed. Friendly staff, good service, nice enough location. Just a little quiet for us, to be honest, but we did visit during the off-season.
41 Saranankara Road
Phone: 081 2238316 or 081 4901628 (for tours)
Stayed there: Jan 3rd 2007
Rates: 1000 Sri Lankan Rupees a night upwards for a double/twin en-suite
We ended up staying here as we opted to take one of their tours. They were cheaper than the Lake Round and the rooms were much nicer. Staff were friendly and helpful – it’s family-run – and the location’s not too bad. Allow between 10 and 15 minutes to get to the town centre, depending on your walking speed.
It’s a little hard to find the road it’s on, even though it’s populated with a gazillion guest houses. Walk around the lake to the opposite side from the Tooth Temple and go past Hill Wood Road and the archway just after it. Round the corner you’ll see a pedestrian crossing painted on the main road. It’s the next small street on the right, heading steeply uphill. Expeditor is right at the tippy top.
There’s a lovely view from a balcony upstairs, where you can sit and drink beer while the sun goes down over the lake. Showers in the room are decent enough, though the hot water in mine only lasted two minutes! Given the ambient temperature, this isn’t a nightmare.
We had breakfast there the day we left and it was pleasant enough, though a little pricey at 300Rp for toast, egg, tea and some fruit.
The tours offered are varied and reasonably-priced. Our one-day (6:30am to 8:30pm) trek around the Cultural Triangle was $US75 between two of us. This covered the driver and vehicle use, though we had to buy the triangle tickets, lunch and so on. It was a long drive, though, and a lot of our money went into the fuel tank. We reckon it would still have cost the same amount had we been a group of five, so going with a few people will save you money.
The Lake Round
8/5 Sangaraja Mawatha
(on Hillwood Road)
Stayed there: Jan 2nd 2007
Rates: We paid 1200 SL Rupees for a twin/double en-suite
We ended up at this one courtesy of a “helpful” taxi driver. In fairness, it’s not a bad place and at 1200 Rupees was par for the course pricewise. This included towels, loo roll and soap – many places don’t.
The shower was functional and hot, though the shower head was a little weedy. Still, one of the hottest showers I’d had in weeks so certainly a plus point! The lady who welcomed us was helpful and friendly, though we didn’t see too much of her as we were out most of the time.
There’s not a lot else to say, really. It was comfy to sleep in, secure and clean enough for our needs.