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White House
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Reviews (266)
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All reviewsthe riveradams peakgave great tipsshort nighthot showerbuffet dinneruseful tipspre climbten minute walkbase campnice place to staybudget hoteltriple roombriefingguidedinersrilankan
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Reviewed February 4, 2013

Many people breeze in and stay 1 night; we stayed 2 and loved our time in this special place. We called ahead and reserved a family room. This place books up so do call ahead. The room rate comes with a delicious, filling buffet dinner and set breakfast. Not all rooms are the same quality so ask to see your room ahead of time. We were in a newer room that was clean, had a little shaded deck with 2 chairs and a hammock. The bathroom was small and could have used a fresh painting. The hot water was intermittent. There was Wi-Fi, but it only worked in the eating area. The guesthouse is set down the hill from the main road and has a beautiful view of Adam’s Peak. The river is on the property and a Gazebo sits nearby. Lovely spot for relaxing after your hike. The atmosphere is the best in Sri Lanka, everyone either doing the hike the next day or just completing the hike that morning. Everyone was so kind and it was a great place for meeting other travelers and getting their ideas about places to stay and things to do in the country. We would highly recommend staying here. Check the weather forecast before going. You want to see the sunrise!

Room Tip: We stayed in room 7 which is one of 3 in a newer block of rooms. Some of the rooms are older and are not of the same quality that is why there are different reviews of this place.
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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Thank bikingmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 24, 2013 via mobile

We cross referenced this place from a Lonely Planet listing with Trip Advisor. Our findings for Dalhousie area didn't seam so great and reviews for Slightly Chilled and The White House were the best across the board. We tried Slightly Chilled first but they were full so went for The White House.

We booked up while we were at The Rafters Retreat in Kitulgala and by chance the owner's family lived local to it. He offered us a lift/taxi service to his place from there (1000rs) for two. We could have got there cheaper but kinda thought it was a good price for door to door service.

Our double room was 3000rs half board. The Rice and Curry was pretty good. Not the best we've had but still very good. It was 1h 30min drive.

The room was clean, tidy and well presented, but was a little basic. It's a top end Backpacker's kind of place. Great for couples I'd say. Guests were chatting and exchanging experiences etc which I love.

The gardens were lovey too.

The owner and staff we found to be really friendly. The owner especially made extra effort to come chat with each guest to make sure they were happy in a lighthearted jolly way. A pleasure to talk to. He also supplied great info for onward journeys for guests etc.

I would say the towels we were supplied were damp but we're an understanding pair and you can see people come and go daily to climb Adams Peak meaning washing towels etc is a daily requirement. The weather was poor on the day we arrived. It would be unreasonable to think that his staff could dry all these items in that weather. I guess he could have more supplies but how many should he keep? It's not the Hilton and a tumble dryer wouldn't feature highly on their list of must have items.

I'd recommend this place if you're not expecting 5 star accommodation. But in this town you won't get much better.

  • Stayed: January 2013
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1  Thank Uncle-Jayo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 16, 2013

Like a lot of people, I booked the White House as a place to crash in the evening before climbing Sri Pada (Adam's Peak).

The White House is down a little hill from the main road in Dalhousie, so is in the shade of the hills. The good part of being down the hill is it is close to a very nice little stream. It is a couple of minute walk to the main village and base of the climb up Adam's Peak. At 2:00 a.m. the lane up the hill to the main road is pitch black, so you may want a light.

My room was the bare minimum I would expect. It was not particularly clean. They had mats on the floor that were grimy. I pushed them off to the side. The cold cement floor was preferable. (Why do so many Sri Lankan guest houses put those hand-knotted mats on the floor? All they are is traps for germs and mould.) There was a large gap under the door, possibly explaining the mosquitos. The door locks were broken and had been replaced with simple bolt locks.

The bathroom was definitely not appealing. There was green mould on the walls and peeling paint. The toilet valve was broken so the top was off the tank and you had to reach in and operate the flush manually. It had obviously been that way a long time. I shared the bathroom with a large frog. Anytime I entered it went back down the drain in the floor, then reappeared as soon as I turned the light out. An added aggravation is they forgot to give me toilet paper. I had to ask three times. Luckily I was hiking out the opposite side the next morning so didn't need to come back to use the shower. It was a retro-fitted spray nozzle beside the toilet. Not a happy thought trying to use it.

A sign in the restaurant suggested there would be tea available at 2:00 a.m. before the climb. Two young girls next door to me were told staff would be awake to make them tea and guide them to the base of the mountain. In fact, none of the staff were around. The girls and I walked up the hill together in the dark.

The dinner was basic rice and curry. It was fine but nothing remarkable. Certainly not the best I've ever had, but good enough. It was a bit bland; definitely seasoned to western tastes. It was also the very first rice and curry meal I've had in six months in Sri Lanka that was not accompanied by some kind of sambol.

Reading back it goods like I didn't like the White House. In fact, it was about what I expected for the price. I would have been much happier with a cleaner bathroom, but otherwise it was okay.

If you want a cheap place to flop for a few hours before climbing Sri Pada, the White House will be fine. If you're planning to stay in Dalhousie for a few days, I suggest checking other options.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled solo
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Thank GVancouver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 14, 2013 via mobile

Nice friendly place and perfect for Adam's peak.
It's at the beginning of Dalhousie so it adds a flat 10 minutes walk to the total hike.
Breakfast was included. Dinner was awesome. Shower is not hot but warm enough.

Thank you :)

  • Stayed: January 2013
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Thank Matocomo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2013

We found this to be great value and unlike some reviewers, the included food was better and more plentiful than anticipated, and the bill was lower than expected!
We stayed in a room away from the main house - very basic, and was kind of damp smelling in the pouring rain, but that's hard to avoid. It was clean and had a nice porch (great to sit in the sun after the climb).
We were quoted a very reasonable price with dinner and breakfast included. Both meals were excellent and huge portions.
The White House has a gorgeous garden right on the river and a swimming hole, and is right in Dalhousie with beautiful Adams Peak views, so a great base. Look out for friendly pets - one of the resident dogs went with us all the way to the top of the Peak - wonder if he does that every day!
Note: watch out for dishonest tuk tuk drivers - our driver from Hatton refused to take us to the White House as requested, insisting it was full (and of course had a recommended alternative.) We had to just about throttle him to get him to take us there anyway (and yes they had rooms!)

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank KidzGo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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