top 10 sri lanka

The train journey from Kandy to Ella is the most beautiful train journey in Sri Lanka if not in the world! Board the train and enjoy breathtaking views of lush green tea plantations, mountains, viaducts, valleys and dense jungle. Plus, it’s the perfect way to experience life in Sri Lanka. Meet the smiling locals on the train, wave at the kids as they hurtle down the tracks, and munch on the spicy snacks sold by the vendors who board you at each stop. This is an experience not to be missed in Sri Lanka; Find out everything you need to know in this comprehensive guide.

Train from Kandy to Ella

The train from Kandy to Ella is a beautiful 7 hour journey through tea plantations, jungle and mountains. As the journey continues, climb higher and higher into the verdant highlands where there are large tea plantations and many beautiful mountain villages and waterfalls.

ella train journeyThe old-fashioned train is famous for its open windows and doors, which have become a buzz for people who want to feel the wind through their hair as they travel. In fact, it’s become one of the most famous things to do in Sri Lanka, with travelers coming from all over the world to experience it.

If you want to get the best photos of the view, it’s essential to be on the best side of the train. The right-hand side of the train is the best place until Nuwara Eliya. From here, jump over to the left side if you can for the rest of the trip. This ensures you get wide-open views on both parts of the journey.

The train itself doesn’t have anywhere you can buy food. However, the best thing about the Kandy to Ella train ride is the local vendors who jump on at each station to sell their goods. You’ll hear them shouting and singing their prices as they walk between the cabins with steaming baskets off spicy fried snacks, salty peanuts, or fresh fruit. Make sure to have a little bit of cash on you so that you can indulge.

The train ride might be beautiful, but so is Kandy train station! Look up and see the traditional white iron shelter and the gold station signs. As the old-fashioned train pulls into the station – and people wave out the train – you could feel as if you stepped back in time.

Typically, first-class tickets are the best option on any train. However, the Kandy to Ella train is the opposite! The first-class cabin is airconditioned, so you can’t open the windows or doors to take photos. It also means no cool breeze from the tea plantations as you zoom through the valley. This is a big part of the experience, so we recommend choosing second or third class instead.

In the second class, you’ll have a fan to help with the heat, and you’ll also be able to dangle your feet out the door, which is such a buzz and gives you the most incredible views! The third class is a little more uncomfortable, but you’ll have the experience of traveling with locals and their produce – for example, chickens or vegetables.

Please note: be careful when hanging out the doors or windows of the train as there can be hazards like tree branches on the journey. Make sure to be sat in your seat as the train comes into the station; it can be dangerous to dangle your legs out as the train comes to the platform.

Kandy to Ella

Don’t miss any of the highlights on this Sri Lanka train ride. You can get off at numerous locations throughout the trip. For example, Nuwara Eliya, Happuta, or Ella. Some of the top things to do are:

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  • Visit the beautiful botanical gardens in Kandy.
  • Walk over the 30-meter high Nine Arch bridge in Ella.
  • See the impressive tea fields of Nuwara Eliya.

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