Sri Lanka has an excellent range of accommodation in all price brackets, from basic beachside shacks to elegant colonial mansions and sumptuous five-star resorts. There are star class and lower sar hotels, boutique hotels and villas, bungalows, guest houses, home stays, rented apartments and houses, tourist resorts, heritage homes and bungalows, hostels. Travellers on a budget will spend most of their time in guesthouses, usually family-run places either in or attached to the home of the owners. Some of the nicer guesthouses can be real homes from home, with good food and sociable hosts. One night in a guesthouse costs from 1,800 to 3,600 LKR (10-20 USD). Hotels come in all shapes, sizes and prices, from functional concrete boxes to luxurious establishments that are virtual tourist attractions in their own right. Some of the finest hotels (particularly in the hill country) are located in old colonial buildings, offering a wonderful taste of the lifestyle and ambience of yesteryear, while the island also boasts a number of stunning modern hotels. The coastal areas are also home to innumerable resort hotels, the majority of which are fairly bland, populated largely by tourists on full-board programmes. Hotels in Sri Lanka are much cheaper here than other parts of the world, so if you’ve got a decent travel budget, you can find some incredible accommodation at decent rates. A night in a 3-star hotel would cost you between 2,700 and 5,500 LKR (15-30 USD). Sri Lanka is waking up to its massive eco-tourism potential, and now boasts good eco-oriented hotels and lodges. You can also stay in bungalows or camp within most of the island’s national parks, although this can be difficult to arrange. The national parks are the only places in Sri Lanka with official campsites. Pitching your tent unofficially in rural areas or on the beach is likely to lead to problems with local landowners and villagers. The camping prices range anywhere from 3,500 to 170,000 LKR (20 to around 900 USD) depending on the exact location and activities involved (like safari). Sri Lanka also boasts a huge (and continually increasing) number of villas and boutique hotels, many set in old colonial villas or old tea estate bungalows and offering stylish and luxurious accommodation. The price range for a boutique hotel starts at around 14,000 LKR ( around70 USD) per night. It’s important to note that hostels are rarer in Sri Lanka than other southeast Asian countries, mostly due to the abundance of wonderful guesthouses. That being said, there are a number of cool hostels in all the main destinations on the island. The price for a hostel in Colombo starts at around 1,100 LKR (6 USD) per night. Hotels are classified using the usual one-to five-star system. In addition, some smaller hotels and guesthouses are officially approved by the Sri Lanka Tourist Board, though it must be said that such approval means absolutely nothing – indeed, if anything, approved places often tend to be worse than their non-approved rivals.