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The Essentials Of A Sri Lankan "Hotel"

NOT an establishment that provides accommodation.

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The rhythmic clanging as the chef prepares the kottu, the shouts of orders and table numbers whizzing above your head to and fro, whole roasted chicken in the display case since the morning; these are some of the images that pop into your head when you hear the term "Hotel" in Sri Lanka. 

Regardless of the fact that a Hotel is defined as an establishment that provides food and accommodation, in Sri Lanka, it is also a term used to identify all your fav roadside eateries, and these are few of the essentials each of them have!


The staple breakfast, dinner or brunch if you're on a budget, the paratha is an essential at every Sri Lankan streetside Hotel. Paired with a mouthwatering, spicy gravy or torn into pieces and swathed in gravy and pol sambol on the side, this is one food that we'll never get tired of. 

String Hoppers

Along with the paratha, this is also a popular breakfast/dinner option. Coupled with a chicken or potato gravy and a pol sambol: definition of satisfying. 

Kottu & Fried Rice

The two mains at a Hotel, these are the options you'd like to go for if you're looking forwards to a warm, spicy meal.

Unfortunately, not every place pulls it off properly, regardless, they settle for any version of it. And thankfully, there are many


Shorteats or "sorties", are a mandatory part of any of these roadside Hotels. From ulundu wade, pol roti, and vegetable/chicken/beef roti to patties, samosas and various buns, these are ideal for if you're going for a quick bite. 


Whether it be with milk or just the plain tea, it's the ideal way to wash down a meal at a Sri Lankan Hotel. 


Any hotel that has a hint of Indian will obviously have various different types of dosa to choose from. 


Every streetside Hotel fires up their thachchis to make hoppers in the evening. Accompanied by some lunu miris, this is the bomb! 

Bombay sweets

Little blocks of sweet, sweet fare a little over-priced (comparatively), it's a darn fine treat, especially after a spiced up meal. 

Do you think we've missed out any? If so, mention them in the comments below!  

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