Kandy to Ella The Most Iconic Train Ride in Sri Lanka

Kandy to Ella Iconic Train Ride

Embark on an unforgettable journey through paradise with the Kandy to Ella train ride. This iconic rail journey takes you through some of Sri Lanka’s most breathtaking landscapes, from verdant tea plantations to cascading waterfalls and misty mountains. Discover why this scenic route is a must-do experience for travelers seeking adventure and natural beauty.

Introduction to the Kandy to Ella Train Ride

The Kandy to Ella train ride is hailed as one of the most picturesque train journeys in the world. Spanning approximately 118 kilometers, the route winds its way through the heart of Sri Lanka’s hill country, offering unparalleled views of lush greenery, mist-covered mountains, and quaint villages along the way.

Why Take the Kandy to Ella Train Ride?

Experience the beauty of Sri Lanka’s countryside in comfort and style aboard the iconic blue train. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a photography enthusiast, or simply seeking a memorable travel experience, the Kandy to Ella train ride promises to delight all your senses.

Departure from Kandy

Scenic Route Overview

Kandy to Ella Iconic Train Ride
Photo by Steffen Bertram on Unsplash

The journey begins in the historic city of Kandy, home to the revered Temple of the Tooth and lush botanical gardens. As the train chugs out of the station, it traverses through verdant tea estates and dense forests, offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.

Iconic Landmarks Along the Way

En route to Ella, the train passes by iconic landmarks such as Nine Arch Bridge, a marvel of colonial-era engineering, and Ramboda Falls, one of Sri Lanka’s tallest waterfalls. Each twist and turn of the track unveils new wonders, making every moment of the journey truly unforgettable.

Highlights of the Journey

Tea Plantations and Rolling Hills

Marvel at the emerald-green tea plantations that carpet the hillsides, creating a mesmerizing patchwork of colors as far as the eye can see. Learn about the art of tea cultivation and processing, a cornerstone of Sri Lanka’s economy and culture.

Waterfalls and Gorges

Admire the sheer beauty of Sri Lanka’s natural landscapes as the train passes through mist-shrouded valleys and cascading waterfalls. Feel the cool spray of water on your face as you gaze in awe at these majestic wonders of nature.

Arrival in Ella

Exploring Ella

Arriving in the quaint town of Ella, you’ll be greeted by a laid-back vibe and stunning views of Ella Rock and Little Adam’s Peak. Spend your time hiking, birdwatching, or simply relaxing amidst the tranquility of nature.

Return Journey Options

After exploring Ella, you have the option to either return to Kandy by train or continue your adventures elsewhere in Sri Lanka. Whichever you choose, the memories of your Kandy to Ella train ride will stay with you forever.

Tips for a Memorable Experience

Book in Advance: Tickets for the Kandy to Ella train ride often sell out quickly, especially during peak tourist season. Be sure to book your tickets well in advance to secure your seat. You can reserve your ticket from here.

Choose the Right Class: The train offers different classes of travel, including first class, second class, and observation car. Consider your budget and preferences when selecting your ticket. People often opt for 2nd or 3rd class reservations over first class because the windows or shutters cannot be opened in first class.

Pack Essentials: Bring along essentials such as water, snacks, sunscreen, and a camera to capture the breathtaking scenery along the way.

Best Time to Take the Train

The best time to take the Kandy to Ella train ride is during the dry season, which runs from December to March. During this time, you’ll enjoy clear skies and optimal visibility, allowing you to fully appreciate the beauty of your surroundings. But you can enjoy the train ride on other months too.

Safety Precautions

Kandy to Ella Iconic Train Ride
Photo by Matt Dany on Unsplash

While the Kandy to Ella train ride is generally safe, it’s important to exercise caution and follow safety guidelines during your journey. Avoid leaning out of moving train windows and keep your belongings secure at all times.

Sustainable Travel Practices

As responsible travelers, it’s important to minimize our environmental impact and support sustainable tourism initiatives. Dispose of waste responsibly, opt for eco-friendly transportation options, and respect the natural habitats of wildlife.


The Kandy to Ella train ride offers a magical journey through some of Sri Lanka’s most spectacular landscapes, providing travelers with an unparalleled opportunity to connect with nature and immerse themselves in the country’s rich cultural heritage. Whether you’re a seasoned explorer or a first-time visitor, this iconic rail journey is sure to leave you with memories that last a lifetime.


How long does the Kandy to Ella train ride take?

The journey typically takes around 6 to 7 hours, depending on the train schedule and any delays. You can check the train schedule from here.

Are there restroom facilities available on the train?

Yes, the train is equipped with restroom facilities for passenger convenience.

Can I purchase food and drinks onboard the train?

Yes, vendors often pass through the train selling snacks, drinks, and local delicacies.

Is the Kandy to Ella train ride suitable for families with children?

Yes, the train ride is suitable for families with children of all ages. However, parents should exercise caution and supervise their children during the journey.

What should I wear for the Kandy to Ella train ride?

Dress comfortably and wear layers, as temperatures can vary throughout the journey. Don’t forget to bring a jacket or sweater for cooler mountain climates.

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