Best accommodation in Sri Lanka
If you’re planning a family trip to Sri Lanka and wish to have an affordable yet magnificent accommodation check out Penthouse on the Rocks. We rarely write about hotels, villas or apartments here in Happy Little Traveller but there are some places that amaze you worth spreading the word.
Penthouse on the Rocks is a unique place in the center of Unawatuna situated in the south coast of Sri Lanka. Unawatuna is a suburb of historical town Galle, about 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) southeast to the Galle city center and approximately 108 kilometres (67 mi) south of Colombo.
The Penthouse is built on the top of the rock mountain. It’s not that high but high enough for the best views. The house is only 100 metres / 2 minutes walk from famous Unawatuna beach with great swimming and sunbathing, lots of choices of restaurants and nightlife. Still, you will feel private and away from the crowds as you are up so high in the apartment.
The place is amazing being so close to the beach and all the hustle of Unawatuna and the view to the ocean beats it all. Yet, you feel comfortable and remote. The jungle starts right behind the building and you will hear and see it daily. Just pay attention and you’ll meet some monkeys, lizards and peacocks. The beauty of nature is the beauty that Sri Lanka offers everywhere.
All natural materials
There’s a million dollar view to the ocean from the huge balcony. The rooms are spacious and designed with heart. All materials come from ocean or from Sri Lankan jungle which starts right behind the building. Therefore, if you love good taste and natural materials with good quality you’ll like Penthouse on the Rocks. There are so many lovely details and hidden nuances at the place which can not be seen on the pictures but you will never regret discovering the place yourself.
Perfect for families or friends up to 6 people
We stayed there with our family including 2 adults and 2 small children. To be honest it is not the place which is designed for children (you have to watch their safety near stairs as those have not been childproofed) but we still loved it.
Yes, you have to park couple hundred metres away if you go with car as we did and you might have difficulties finding parking space. Hereby it’s more convenient and cheaper just to walk around and use tuk-tuk. But if you still decide to go with car to travel around yourself the host will assist you to find the parking lot and the shop and restaurant owners are kind enough to allow short stopping in front of their businesses until you take all your luggage.
The only way to get up to your vacation heaven is that you have to climb almost 100 steps each time to reach the apartment. Thereby, it’s not a place to stay for people with difficulties to move. Some parents reading would probably also consider places more easily accessible but I never regretted choosing the Penthouse. It was all worth carrying the baby even with 30+ C degrees outside. In addition, the staff will help to carry all heavier suitcases or other luggage you might have.
The rooms are suitable for family or friends. The master bedroom has 1 double bed, the room next to it is actually a living room but the hosts will place another double bed there if needed and there is still enough room for sitting at the table. They also provide a baby cot with mosquito net on request.
The building also has a tower with the best view one small bedroom with bunk bed next to it. We didn’t use it but for bigger children/teenagers it would be a fun place to stay I guess.
WiFi worked fine during the whole stay which is not typical at Sri Lanka as it is to have your own kitchen with all utensils.
The only big con is the lack of air conditioner – there are plenty of fans, but still would have slept better with AC as it is really hot outside. Also I would have liked to have washer inside the house but there are many paid laundry services close.
There are two smaller apartments at the same building but the view is definitely the best and the apartment the most luxurious at the penthouse.
Delicious breakfast in house
Another great thing that came with the accommodation is family of Pathma who we met through the owner. Pathma runs a small beach restaurant That’s it and cooks breakfast there or up in the penthouse which is a little bit more expensive but a very convenient solution. Cracked rice with fresh coconut curd and fruits was the best.
Pathma reserves sunbeds with roof for you if you want and it’s free of charge if you just have some drinks or food from restaurant while you stay there. She, her husband and daughter who all work at the restaurant were lovely.
More information abouth Penthouse on the Rocks here.
If you stay in Unawatuna with kids you might want to visit those places nearby:
– Wijaya beach for kid friendliest swim and nicest beach in the area and Wijaya Beach Restaurant for a lunch.
– An afternoon walk in Galle town and The Fort Walls.
– Sea Turtle Farm and Hatchery to understand the life of sea turtles and see little turtle babies.
– Jungle Beach.
– Japanese Peace Pagoda temple.
– Unawatuna Devol Devalaya temple.
– Sri Yoga Shala if you’re into yoga experience in Sri Lanka and have some time for yourself.
You might also be interested in Sri Lanka with Kids blog post.