Sea Shine Guesthouse in Dodanduwa: spotless seafront rooms that come with a smile and delicious food

Due to some last minute cancellations, we had no taxi reserved upon landing at the Bandaranaike International Airport at 4 a.m. We prepared ourselves for some serious negotiating but that was not necessary: as soon as we walked into the arrival hall, there were several companies offering taxi services with prices written on sign boards. We used the Bandaranaike International Airport Taxi Service (when you arrive, the first company on your right) and the fixed price to Dodanduwa was 8740 Sri Lankan rupees (about 55€/58USD) for an AC van. In addition we paid 300 and 400 rupees for the use of two highways: Colombo-Katunayake Expressway and Southern Expressway. Plus some tip.

My husband and our daughter fell asleep very soon while I watched the night turn into morning. Black became pink, moist air created fog and I could see silhouettes of birds against a rising sun. It was all very pretty and I wondered if this is what the depiction of Garden of Eden looks like.


Depiction of Garden of Eden? No, just a typical image taken on the Southern Expressway on the way to Dodanduwa.

Sea Shine Guesthouse, where we arrived three hours later, turned out to be exactly or even better than we had imagined. Our room was very clean, came with a mosquito net and direct sea view. Like often in Sri Lanka (based on what we saw during our 15-day trip), the bathroom was the weakest part of the room, but it was clean and that was the main thing. We had reserved a non-AC room and as the house was built according to traditional Sri Lankan style, there was natural ventilation (but very few mosquitoes!) making it very nice to fall asleep while listening to the ocean.

Breakfast options were either Western or Sri Lankan and we opted for the latter (but it had to be ordered the night before). Delicious! We moved very little from our hotel, just wanted to relax, so we had lunch and dinner every day at the hotel. Mr. Sunil’s (the owner of the guesthouse) son Roshan took care of the cooking together with his mother, and everything was fresh, tasty and copious. We ate everything and never had any problem… Our daughter became a big fan of pappadums and expanded her palate to devilled chicken, fried noodles, grilled lobster, octopus, stringhoppers, dal, pumpkin curry and sambar.


Missing this breakfast! Chef Roshan’s dal was particularly delicious!  

In overall, we had a relaxing and lovely stay at Sea Shine Guesthouse. Of course it is a homestay, do not expect 5-star service, but we felt that the family went out of their way to make our stay comfortable. They played with our daughter, they taught her how to feed aquarium fish and always made sure she had what she needs for meals. There is no high chair but we had ours.  In terms of sightseeing, there are a turtle hatchery nearby in Kosgoda (we didn’t visit),  Galle (we visited from our next destination) and Hikkaduwa (we took a tuk tuk and returned by the beach). We appreciated the fact that there are some activities and towns nearby, but that the location of our guesthouse was very quiet (Hikkaduwa beach is very busy!). The beach was super clean, there were no beach boys and at night we only heard waves. Perfect! My husband went for a swim but I didn’t dare. I don’t estimate that the beach is safe for children to swim in, but most of the beaches in Sri Lanka aren’t. One should always ask locals what the sea condition is that specific day (sadly, a tourist drowned during our stay in Dodanduwa).

Should you be interested in Sea Shine Guesthouse, I recommend you to contact them directly. I didn’t get response to my email, so the best is to contact them on Facebook: (type “Sea shine Hikka” on Facebook if the link doesn’t work)  or by WhatsApp / cellular phone +94-71-9725703. Facebook and WhatsApp messages are responded by Mr. Sunil’s friendly daughter Dily (say hello from me 🙂 ). We (2 adults and a toddler) paid 5500 Sri Lankan rupees per night for a nice non-AC room (number 2), including breakfast, and in the end we were given the room for 5000 rupees. Websites like etc have higher prices, so contact the guesthouse directly!

Sea Shine Guesthouse:

To read the first post about our Sri Lanka trip, see Planning Sri Lanka: Itinerary


25 thoughts on “Sea Shine Guesthouse in Dodanduwa: spotless seafront rooms that come with a smile and delicious food

    1. Miia Post author

      Hey Iris! Do you know Sri Lanka? This was the first of the five spots we did there. Sri Lanka is not as exotic as e.g. India but it is perfect with a small child: clean, safe and developed.
      PS Hope you are having a lovely St Valentine!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Miia Post author

        I just accidentally trashed your comment in another post, so sorry! Anyhow, hope you are having a lovely day! Paris is grey but spring is almost there…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Miia Post author

        Paris and France are suffering from really rainy, windy and cold weather that apparently comes from Iceland. Looks more like November to me than March! How is it for you?

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Miia Post author

      Thanks Sue! Yes, it was a perfect place to rest from Paris fatigue, recover from jetlag and think what to do next. As you have realized, we have this “problem” that we don’t plan a lot… 😉 Story to be continued!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Resa

    Love your posts and pics, Miia – so inspiring! And now even with a small child 🙂 I’ve only heard positive feedback about Sri Lanka, similar to yours, also for kids-included holidays, so your experience confirms this. Glad you had the trip you were hoping for!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Resa

    Lovely posts and pics, Miia – inspiring to travel far and wide and to visit Sri Lanka! And now even with a small child 🙂 I’ve only heard positive feedback about Sri Lanka, similar to yours, also for kids-included holidays, so your experience confirms this. Glad you had the trip you were hoping for!

    Liked by 1 person

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      1. Always a Foreigner

        Absolutely! My boyfriend has been trying to get us to go for a while now, and I think we’ll have to add it into our travel plans as soon as we can.

        Liked by 1 person

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