Hostels in Sri Lanka Hostels in Sri Lanka

You are looking for hostels in Sri Lanka? Good news, you have come to the right place.

On this page we list every single city with hostels and other budget accommodations. helps you to find your Sri Lanka hostel and compare its prices on the major booking sites such as Hostelworld, Hostelsclub and So you can sleep on a budget and save money while backpacking Sri Lanka.

All Cities in Sri Lanka

We list every single hostel in Sri Lanka and the world. In total, we have 53 cities in Sri Lanka for you. Please note that not all cities actually have a hostel to stay in. Below you can filter for cities with hostels and with no hostels-type accommodation, but guesthouses and budget hotels. This will help your planning.

All Sri Lanka hostels on a map

Alright, you are more the visual type? Planning your trip with a map is always handy.

Therefore, this map shows you all cities with hostels in Sri Lanka. It will help you to plan your trip. Just zoom in the map and click your destination for more details. Just so you know: If we do not have a hostel in a city, it is likely that there is no hostel in that city.

Our handwritten guide on Backpacking Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka, an island country in the Indian Ocean lying just to the South of India, is reputed for its natural beauty and diversity. It is filled with idyllic beaches, lowland jungles filled with wildlife, hilly countryside, tea plantations, vibrant reefs, ancient ruins and pleasant rain forests. Sri Lanka is the world’s oldest stronghold of Buddhism and is dominated by ancient temples, Buddha relics, majestic stupas and serene monasteries. The country was once an important post of the Indian Ocean trade due to its geographical position and now enjoys a heady combination of British, Portuguese, Dutch, Malay, Arab and Indian cultures. The remnants of Portuguese, Dutch, British and Indian settlements coupled with ruins of ancient cities in Sri Lanka dot the country-scape and form a large part of its rich, historical architecture.

The ideal time to visit Sri Lanka is from April to September for the eastern part of the country and from December to March for central and western Sri Lanka. The weather here changes frequently, so it is always best to take along a lot of clothing when you visit and include some light rain-gear. The country is rather conservative; if you plan to visit religious sites or non-beach areas, be sure to dress modestly or with local garb. If you're checking into one of the hostels in Sri Lanka, check with the hostel administration as to where you will be able to get local clothing as well as deals on sight-seeing packages.

Around 1,000 miles of gorgeous palm beaches along the coast of Sri Lanka are just waiting for you to bask in them. Conveniently close to the airport is Negombo, which is also the most popular beach. Other popular beaches include Beruwela, Bentota, Mount Lavinia, Negombo, Hikkaduwa and Unawatuna.

If you're looking for less crowded beaches, check out the beautiful beaches in southern Sri Lanka. If you love diving and snorkeling, Bentota beach is the perfect place for you. Here, you can explore the coral reefs, underwater caves and barnacled underwater wrecks. On the northeastern shore of this country is Pigeon Island, which is surrounded by a limestone reef that houses 100 species of coral and more than 300 types of fishes. If you love surfing, then head to Sri Lanka’s south coast to ride the waves. Popular spots are Talalla, Hikkaduwa, and Midigama. The ideal season to go surfing is from April through October.

Visit the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, which is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. Here you can feed Asian elephants and watch them bathe in a nearby river. Wander around the Sigiriya Rock Fortress, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This amazing palace-fortress dating back to the 5th century nests atop a towering rock above the plains in the center of Sri Lanka. Marvel at the impressively conserved Dambulla Cave Temples, which are tucked underneath a big rock outcrop. You can get a glimpse of the Buddhist heritage here with the temple’s collection of religious murals. Go on a safari at the Yala National Park, which is home to the world’s highest density of leopards. Explore the varied wildlife at Udawalawe National Park where you can spot elephants, leopards, deer, bears, monkeys, porcupines and birds.

Hostels abound in Sri Lanka and range from modest budget options to backpacker’s hostels. Call in advance and get your hostel reservations early, especially during peak season and Easter. While the beaches in Sri Lanka delight the senses, you certainly do not want to be stranded on one during your visit here!

expert for Sri Lanka hostels

Handwritten by local expert for Sri Lanka hostels Joy Barboza


Travel Tips for Sri Lanka - from the Community

Hey fam! Here are a few more tips from the community, from them to you, and you to them. This space is dedicated for travellers to share their best tips on backpacking Sri Lanka. Have a closer look - the Hostelz community share real hidden gems, insider knowledge and overall impressions of Sri Lanka. Everyone is welcome to add something useful, funny, unexpected and the "absolutely necessary to know before you go" - share, share and then share a little more!

FAQ on Hostels in Sri Lanka

There is a lot of travel planning to do. So let us help you once again by putting together the frequently asked questions:

Finding Hostels and Prices

What hostel booking sites are best to use?

There is several hostel booking sites, such as, and While every platform has its pros and cons, there is a universal truth you as a traveler should be aware of: Not a single booking site can always offer the best prices.

This is where comes in. You can compare all major booking portals with one click.

For you as a traveler, is the best booking site to actually save money.

How much are hostels in Sri Lanka?

Prices always vary, depending on various factors. Weekends tend to be more expensive, same goes for special holidays. Please also take into account local vaction time.

You can search for exacty hostel prices in Sri Lanka here on Pick your destination and pick a date. The system will track down the prices to give an idea of what budget and prices you can expect.

When to book hostels?

If you want to stay at the best hostels, it is a good idea to have your hostel booked around 1 month before you travel. For the regular hostels, booking one week before should be okay. Yet again, this always depends.

We dedicated a full article to the topic of when to book hostels.


Safety and Packing

Are hostels in Sri Lanka safe?

Generally speaking, hostels are as safe as you make them. We highly recommend always to bring your own padlock, using the lockers and taking care of your belongings. Make sure you pick a safe hostel, offering lockers and a safe location. Please always pay attention to the reviews; they can give you a great insight on what to expect and safety tips.

What to pack when staying in hostels?

There is a few basics you should always pack when staying in hostels.

  1. Padlock
  2. Earplugs
  3. Sleeping Mask
  4. Quick Dry Travel Towel
  5. Head Lamp

There is more actually. We wrote a complete guide with more details. Read our full hostel packing list.

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