Major hotels serve a wide variety of food options including Sri Lankan, Western, Chinese and Indian foods. In the big cities Western, Chinese and Indian restaurants are widely available but outside of the cities most restaurants only offer Sri Lankan foods. Halal and Vegetarian options are also available throughout the country. Fast-food chains such as Mcdonalds, Pizza Hut, Dominos, and KFC operate in Colombo and other major cities and suburbs.
Most hotels serve a breakfast buffet. Which usually include continental breakfast as well as Sri Lankan foods such as rice and curry, Kiribath (Milk Rice), Appa (Hoppers), Idi Appa (String Hoppers) and Pittu. Sri Lankans usually eat Rice and Curry for both lunch and dinner. Also for dinner Appa (Hoppers) and Idi Appa (String Hoppers) are usually available in addition to Kottu which is a popular Sri Lankan food. There are night restaurants along the main highways which open throughout the night and usually serve Kottu, Fried Rice and Appa (Hoppers). If you have a food allergy be specific in all the places you eat because allergy information usually is not included in the menu.
The following are the average costs.
Excellent – LKR 1500
Average – LKR 200
Lunch / Dinner
Excellent – LKR 5000
Average – LKR 500
Drinks / Alcohol / Smoking
Bottled water is widely available and costs about LKR 100 for 1.5 liters. It is recommended to always use bottled water for drinking because the quality of tap water is not consistent throughout the country.
Alcohol is available in most supermarkets but extremely expensive because of the high taxation. For example, a Johnnie Walker Black Label 750ml bottles cost around LKR 13000 and a 500ml x 6 beer pack cost around LKR 1200. But it is possible to buy from duty-free shops in the airport because visitors can bring two bottles of wine and 1.5L of alcohol without custom duty.
Cigarettes are also expensive and it costs about LKR 1200 for a pack. There is no custom duty-free allowance for cigarettes. You must declare to customs if you bring cigarettes or alcohol exceeding duty-free limits.
Drinking and Smoking in public places are prohibited. Drinking is allowed in most restaurants and hotels, but smoking is usually limited to private spaces.