How to Spend One Day in Ella
If you’re planning a trip to Sri Lanka, you won’t want to miss a visit to the idyllic mountain town of Ella. Surrounded by lush tea plantations and hills that undulate under an enchantingly misty sky, Ella offers a plethora of attractions to visit and activities to partake in. However, if you’ve got only one day to explore the sleepy town, here’s exactly you should spend it!
When to Visit?
The best time of year to visit Ella is between December and March, when the weather is lovely and there are fewer chances of encountering rain. However, if you don’t mind the occasional showers (or torrential downpours), head to the hills at any time of the year. There are plenty of things to do in Ella even when its raining; so it’s the perfect charming town to escape to.
The Nine Arches Bridge
The Nine Arches Bridge – also known as the Bridge in the Sky – is one of Sri Lanka’s most iconic attractions, featuring a stunning viaduct bridge that towers over a valley of tea plants. Located between the Ella and Demodara railway stations, it’s easy enough to make your way to the bridge – you can either follow the signs that point the way, or hop into a tuk-tuk to get you there. If you can visit the bridge before sunrise, you’ll get some amazing photos of the area without the crowds of tourists that flock through later.
Bear in mind that it is a working bridge, and that trains periodically pass through its tracks. The sound of the train will reach you well before it arrives, so keep an ear out and be ready to move out of the tracks when it goes by!
Ravana Falls is another one of Ella’s famous attractions. Known as one of the widest waterfalls on the island, legend has it that King Ravana of Lanka kidnapped the wife of a Hindu god and hid her away in the caves behind these waters. It’s generally safe to swim in the pool at the base of the waterfall – but be sure to check with some locals in the area before you jump in!
Ravana Falls looks its best during periods of rain, this is also when the water is at its most powerful however, so take care while walking across the rocks as they can get pretty slippery!
Climbing up Adam’s Peak can take a significant chunk of time out of your day, so if you would like to see more of Ella during your stay, attempt to start your hike in the very early hours of the morning. The drive to Adam’s Peak is roughly 4 hours, and the trek itself can take up to 3.5 hours. While it’s a bit out of the way, it’s definitely one of the ‘must-do’ activities on a traveller’s bucket list. Those who make the climb in time to watch the sunrise will agree that it’s one of the most stunning sights you could have hoped for, and well-worth the trek.
However, if travelling to and from Adam’s Peak is cutting it too short into your schedule, about 10 minutes from Ella town, you can climb Little Adam’s Peak. If timed perfectly, sunsets here are incredible!
If hiking Little Adam’s Peak was a walk in the park – try conquering these mountains , if you have time (and the stamina!)
As Ella is located in the mountainous region which is famous for its tea estates and factories, visiting either of these is compulsory, especially for first time visitors. Learn the interesting process of tea-making, from the plucking of the leaves all the way to how they’re prepared before being packaged for sale. There are several estates you can visit, so choose one closest to you. You’ll get to taste some of Sri Lanka’s best brews at the end of your tour, as well as purchase some to take back home with you.