We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The Tripadvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

The Sanctuary At Tissawewa

Old Puttalam Road, Old Town, Anuradhapura 50000 Sri Lanka
E-mail hotel
View all 9 deals
Prices are the average nightly price provided by our partners and may not include all taxes and fees. Taxes and fees that are shown are estimates only. Please see our partners for more details.
Traveler (235)
Room & Suite (46)
Dining (13)
Certificate of Excellence


#4 of 46 hotels in Anuradhapura
Certificate of Excellence
Charming Colonial hotel dating back to 1907, Built with luxury, the only hotel within the Sacred city of Anuradhapura. nestled in a 14 acre block of land which is a home to many species of birds and not forgetting the monkeys.
Read more
Full view
Property amenities
Free parking
Free High Speed Internet (WiFi)
Free breakfast
Bicycle rental
Airport transportation
Foot massage
Currency exchange
Outdoor furniture
Secured parking
Public wifi
Breakfast available
Breakfast in the room
Car hire
Full body massage
Hand massage
Head massage
Neck massage
Picnic area
Sun umbrellas
Laundry service
Ironing service
Show more
Room features
Air conditioning
Room service
Bottled water
Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Family rooms
Good to know
320Reviews0Q+A65Room tips
Traveler rating
  • 114
  • 109
  • 48
  • 22
  • 27
Time of year
Traveler type
  • More
Selected filters
  • Filter
  • English
Popular mentions
Sojourner_xx wrote a review Mar 2020
42 contributions26 helpful votes
Hmmm….this stay was definitely a disappointment. It started with confusion during check in about our room and either a miscommunication via Expedia about the type of room we’d booked or a misunderstanding at the front desk. In any event, it was definitely a non-Sri Lankan welcome. (We've been to the LK a couple of times...) I did very much appreciate that one of the managers, Lol (sorry for any misspelling), made an effort to seek me out to apologize. And, the wonderful staff at the restaurant were more typical of the Sri Lankan charm and hospitality that we’ve gotten to know. These efforts motivated me to give the hotel at least three stars. However, my complaint is with the owner of the hotel. Hello! - this property is in a prime location! It has ample acreage, beautiful trees, and, the building itself is an historic, architectural statement. But it is in very sad shape. It has the feeling of a Grand Dame who has been ignored for years and so no matter how charming and attentive the staff is, the hotel itself is depressing. The rooms desperately need upgrades. The whole facility needs a facelift – one that maintains its historic significance but brings the property to life. Such a missed opportunity! With its location, grounds and historic architecture, it could be a jewel within the ancient city of Anuradhapura. Instead. It basically offers an out-of-date sleeping room with a decent restaurant. If the owner can’t afford to bring this great property up to its potential, he should get a loan or a grant or sell it to someone who will give the property the attention it deserves. If you just want a reasonably priced sleeping room in a very convenient location, the Sanctuary is ok. (BTW - Trip Advisor, how on earth did you award this property a Certificate of Excellence in 2019? It demeans the value of that award when given to properties that far exceed this one.)
Read more
Date of stay: March 2020
Sleep Quality
1 Helpful vote
jeyama2018 wrote a review Feb 2020
London, United Kingdom13 contributions3 helpful votes
The Sanctuary at Tissawewa is a charming old hotel. Ideal for using as base to visit the ruined cities nearby. Staff are lovely & very helpful. Food choices were limited but understandable due to size of place.
Read more
Date of stay: February 2020
Response from Quickshaws Pvt Ltd, Guest Services / Front Office at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa
Responded Feb 26, 2020
Dear Guest, We are pleased to know that you had enjoyed your stay at this hotel . Our team takes note of your satisfaction on our service and meals . We all welcome you back to spend a few more nights on your next visit to Anuradhapura . Thank you. Best regards,
Read more
Robert N wrote a review Feb 2020
3 contributions
We enjoyed our stay here in an interesting building with great atmosphere. The location is good for visiting Arunradhapura and the grounds are restful with interesting wildlife. There are Royal Gardens nearby and also a nearby lake with wading birds and an eagle. There are peacocks and monkeys in the grounds. The breakfast was very good.
Read more
Date of stay: February 2020
Sleep Quality
Response from Hotels Q, Manager at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa
Responded Feb 12, 2020
Dear Valued Guest, We are pleased to know that you had enjoyed your stay at this hotel . Our team takes note of your satisfaction on our service and meals . We all welcome you back to spend a few more nights on your next visit to Anuradhapura . Thank you. Best regards,
Read more
joeycalgary wrote a review Jan 2020
Tissamaharama, Sri Lanka72 contributions13 helpful votes
Rent a bike for 500 rupees (less than $5.00 a day), ride around the dike and through the rice patties to small village Neeraiya and back. A glorious ride even in the light drizzle. Birdwatch as you go to watch - the Malabar Pied hornbill and the glorious paradise flycatcher. A beautiful tranquil ride safe from the usual Sri Lankan busy roads.
Read more
Date of stay: January 2020Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Response from Hotels Q, Manager at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa
Responded Jan 23, 2020
Dear Valued Guest, We are pleased to know that you had enjoyed your visit to this hotel . We take note that you had enjoyed cycling around the city of Anuradhapura, and we welcome you back to spend a few more nights on your next visit to Sri Lanka . Thank you. Best regards,
Read more
BenhamParty wrote a review Jan 2020
Wokingham, United Kingdom195 contributions76 helpful votes
We only stayed for one night after visiting the various temples and religious sites of the sacred city. The entrance to the hotel is fantastic and your first thought is that you are going to be staying in a beautiful old colonial style hotel, however, once you enter the hotel you realise that internally it is run down and in need of refurbishment. It was also disappointing that their was no swimming pool ( I never checked beforehand, so my fault) but in high temperatures and humidity it was exactly what you needed to cool off. I was told by the manager that as the hotel is situated in the sacred city no swimming pools are allowed, however our driver/guide claimed this was untrue. As the front garden was well beautiful and well maintained I thought I could find a nice shady at the rear but their was no garden, it was a messy area used for garbage etc. On a plus side our evening meal and breakfast was very good. Sadly I have to say that I wouldn’t stay their again.
Read more
Date of stay: January 2020Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Response from Hotels Q, Manager at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa
Responded Jan 20, 2020
Dear Guest, We are sad to read your review of our hotel and whilst apologizing for what you found wanting, would like give some background information which we believe is relevant. Refurbishment of the hotel is certainly over due and our plans last year had to be put on hold after the poor season post Easter bombing. However we do hope to revive them this year, but must point out that all our facilities are well maintained and in good working order. The need for a pool in a hot climate was obvious to us and we did apply to build a swimming pool many years ago but could not get the necessary approval from Government agencies. Our hotel which we have cared for with much affection for more than half a century, is Government property and as the hotel is more than 100 years old, falls into the Heritage Property list and hence subject to a host of strict regulations, part which arise from being within the Sacred Area of Anuradhapura. For us, alas at the last hurdle, one of the many Government Departments that decide our fate, rejected our application and so, the much needed swimming pool could not be built. No doubt there maybe hotels within the sacred city that do have swimming pools, but as this is Government property, our hands are tied. Being within the Sacred city also means we are not permitted to sell any alcoholic beverage. We are sorry you did not enjoy the use of our front garden, for our patch of cultivated wilderness with the many species of native trees that flourish on it which is home and sanctuary to assorted fauna and is also importantly for our guests. The rear space is not meant to be so but as you point out could be tidier and we shall attend to this immediately. Thank you. Best regards,
Read more
$97 - $120 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
tissawewa resthouse anuradhapura
Tissawewa Resthouse
Sri LankaNorth Central ProvinceAnuradhapura
Payments made by partners impact the order of prices displayed and, for featured or sponsored sort orders, partners’ payments may also influence the order of the accommodations listed.
Is This Your Tripadvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing
Frequently Asked Questions about The Sanctuary At Tissawewa
Which popular attractions are close to The Sanctuary At Tissawewa?
Nearby attractions include Navin Lanka Tours (1.8 miles), Ruwanwelisaya (0.7 miles), and Jethawanaramaya Stupa (2.0 miles).
What are some of the property amenities at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free wifi, free breakfast, and an on-site restaurant.
What food & drink options are available at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast and an on-site restaurant during their stay.
Is parking available at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa?
Yes, free parking and secured parking are available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to The Sanctuary At Tissawewa?
Conveniently located restaurants include Little Paradise Anuradhapura, Mango Mango, and Big Mama Family Restaurant.
Does The Sanctuary At Tissawewa have an airport shuttle?
Yes, The Sanctuary At Tissawewa offers an airport shuttle for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Are there any historical sites close to The Sanctuary At Tissawewa?
Many travelers enjoy visiting Padanagara I of Ancient Anuradhapura (2.0 miles), Temple of the Tooth (2.4 miles), and The Royal Palace (Vijayabahu Maligaya) (1.2 miles).
Is The Sanctuary At Tissawewa accessible?
Yes, it offers wheelchair access. For specific inquiries, we recommend calling ahead to confirm.