Things to Do in Ella

What to do in Ella?

Climb up the Little Adam’s Peak, Visit Diyaluma Falls, Take a shower at Ravana Fall, Explore the town of Ella, Visit the famous Nine Arch Bridge for witnessing the Sunrise, Flying the Ravana Zipline, Train ride to Haputale or Kandy, Visit Lipton Seat, Go to a Tea Factory, Trip to Sigiriya, Safari At The Udawalawe National Park, Visit the Dowa Rock Temple, Visit the Dowa Rock Temple and many more things to do in Ella.

Are you yearning to be surrounded by nature and get indulged in some of the best things in Ella? Do you dream of wandering in misty tea plantations nestled amidst green hills as they show in the movies? Well, then Ella in Sri Lanka is the perfect place for you to visit. Waterfalls, caves, joyful train rides, laid back vibes, and picturesque landscapes, Ella has it all for you to enjoy and experience nature at its best as well as create some everlasting memories in the lap of nature. Travelers may expect to spend their days among the greenest settings, admiring views from mountain top mansions and adventurous hiking trails, as the country is one of the largest tea growers.

Even the train journey is one of life's most memorable and best things in Ella, as you go through bamboo woods and tropical mist on the famed blue train. For a relaxing retreat, there are various charming cafes, hiking trails, and guest houses set in the hills. The famed Lipton's Seat, where tea tycoon Sir Thomas Lipton would supervise his ever-expanding empire, is also worth a visit. After a day in the woods, the town lets you experience a vibrant vibe with plenty of fantastic cafés to enjoy. Here are some fantastic activities to do in Ella, Sri Lanka, that will make you wish you could remain here indefinitely!

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Nine Arches Bridge

The Nine Arches Bridge is one of the most beautiful landmarks of Sri Lanka and amongst the top places to visit in Ella. There is an interesting story behind this bridge. When the British stopped the construction of this bridge mid-way due to lack of steel during World War 1, the locals constructed it using stone and bricks. 

The bridge has stood strong without a single piece of steel since then. The setting of the bridge is extremely charming and is amongst the most popular tourist places in Ella. It is located inside a dense forest near a quaint little village with tea plantations surrounding it. Watching the old world trains pass through this bridge is a sight most loved by the tourists. 

Location: Between Ella and Damodara Station

Timings: The bridge is approachable all day around. However, early morning sunrise is the best time to visit. 

Price: There is no entry fee.

Ravana Falls

Sri Lanka is abundant with the legends of Ramayana. So much so that even the natural landscapes have compelling stories associated with them. The Ravana Falls and the nearby caves are said to be some of the places where the demon god Ravana hid. These legends and the striking landscape of this Ella attraction pulls many travellers to them. 

The waterfall is around 82 ft. in height and is layered in three tiers. The third tier is approachable after a sharp rock climb and rewards with some amazing views of the dense greens and the rocky landscape. 

Location: A 23, Ravana Wildlife Sanctuary, Ella

Timings: March- June, December- February

Price: There is no entry fee

Ella Rock

Ella Rock is one of the most popular hiking destinations in Ella amongst the most interesting places to visit in Ella. A three-hour easy trek will take you further into the luxuriantly dense forested countryside of Ella attractions. During the trek up till the rock, you will see beautiful tea plantations and get a chance to interact with the tea planters. 

Once atop the rock, you will be rewarded with breathtaking views of the morning sun rising from behind the lush hills. You will get a bird’s eye view of the scenic valleys rolling for miles. Travellers love to spend some quiet time in peace atop the rock in this popular tourist place in Ella.

Location: Wellawaya-Ella-Kumbalwela highway, Ella

Timings: The best time for this hike is early morning around 5:30 am

Price: LKR 3,800, INR 1,500

Ceylon Tea Factory

Ceylon Tea Factory is actually a restaurant, which has been named this way so as to intrigue and educates travellers about the tea making heritage of Sri Lanka. It is one of the most popular restaurants in the whole of the country, and not only Ella. Here, you can taste traditional Sri Lankan curries & hot rice, along with international cuisines and drinks. 

The restaurant also has a tea bar that makes hundreds of varieties of teas. Gluten-free meals are also available here. 

Location: no. 4, Passara Road, Ella

Timings: Every day 11:00 am- 10:00 pm

Price: A meal for two costs around LKR 2,290, INR 900.

Little Adam's Peak

Due to its natural landscape, Ella has many quaint and rustic hiking trails. Little Adam’s Peak is one such popular trail that should not be missed. It is a short 50-60 minutes trek that takes you through the world famous tea plantations of the region. The greenery is a respite to the eyes and the intoxicating fragrance of the tea leaves further adds to the experience. 

Once you reach the top of the Little Adam’s Peak, you will see a Buddha statue backdropped against the mountains. 

Location: Ella- Passara Road, Ella 90090

Timings: The best time for the hike is at sunrise or the sunset. The peak is approachable all year around.

Price: There is no entry fee. 

Dhowa Rock Temple

Sri Lanks is known around the world for its tranquil and peaceful spiritual destinations, and the Dhowa Rock Temple is one of the best Ella attractions. Said to be around 2,000 years old, this temple is famous for its huge 39 ft. unfinished statue of Buddha. The rock art and murals in this temple are amazing sights. 

You might run into some monks here who will be more than happy to tell you stories about the Temple. Surrounded by lush greenery, the temple transports the visitors into a peaceful trance. 

Location: Bandarawela- Ella Road

Timings: 8:00- 5:00 pm

Price: There is no entry fee, but you can leave a donation at the temple

Mahamevnawa Monastery

The Mahamevnawa Monastery is one of the most important and revered Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka founded by Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda Thero and is amongst the top places to visit in Ella. This monastery serves as an educational institution for young people and adults who want to be ordained as monks. 

Sri Lankan artists have adorned the Monastery with striking carvings, murals, and painting. Here, you can not only talk freely to the monks but also take personalised meditation lectures from them. Listening to the reverberating Buddhist hymns amidst the peaceful environs is a tranquil experience. 

Location: Bandarawela, Ella

Timings: 8:00 am- 9:00 pm every day of the week

Price: There is no entry fee

Kithal Ella Falls

Imagine the rush of water flowing from atop the hills surrounded by luxuriant and dense forests. That’s Kithal Ella Waterfalls. They are approachable after a short hike amongst the forests from the Nine Arches Bridge. It is amongst the most beautiful places to see in Ella for all nature lovers. 

The water falling into a rocky bed makes for a perfect place to take a dip in the cool waters or simply soak in the soothing sounds of the falling water. It is amongst the most beautiful places to visit in Ella.

Location: Haputale, Ella

Timings: Approachable at all times of the year. The best time is to visit in the rainy months of July- August, as the waterfall almost dries up during summers.

Price: There is no entry fee

Uva Halpewatte Tea Factory

This place is a must-visit for the lovers of tea and is amongst the top tourist places in Ella! Sri Lanka is famous the world over for its amazing Ceylon tea. Halpewatte Tea Factory invites tourists to come inside their premise and see how their favourite tea is made- right from plucking the tea leaves, processing till final packaging. 

This is the largest tea factor in the Uva region. After the tour, you can also have a cup of tea in their tea shop and take teas home. The factory is located at a beautiful vantage point with scenic views of the hills and valleys. 

Location: Badulla Road, Hela halpem Ella

Timings: Every day 8:00 am- 5:00 pm 

Price: Adults LKR 763, INR 300, Children LKR 381, INR 150

Halpe Pattini Devalaya

Halpe Pattini Devalaya is an ancient Devalaya (Temple) dedicated to Pattini Devi. She is considered to be the goddess of fertility and health in Sri Lankan, Buddhist and Hindu faiths. This complex houses a shrine room for the Devi, a kitchen, and the remains of an ancient Buddhist monastery. 

The entire temple is constructed organically using clay and timber. The shrine if opened for the public only once a year at the time of the Perahera (annual procession for the goddess)

Location: Badulla- Bandarawela main road, Ella

Timings: 7:00 am – 5:00 pm

Price: there is no entry fee. 

Ella Spice Garden

Sri Lanka is not known as the ‘Spice Island’ for nothing! The country has the best and the most exotic spices grown indigenously. If you a food connoisseur and want to learn where your spices come from, a visit to the Ella Spice Garden is an important place to visit in Ella. 

This is a private setup run by a local family to make people appreciative about local growing techniques and the thousands of varieties of Lankan spices. An English speaking person will give you a tour of this beautiful property. 

Travellers love to walk amidst the intoxicating fragrance of spices like cinnamon, cloves, chillies, turmeric, nutmeg, cacao, coffee, etc. Here, you can also take a special cooking class or just indulge in a wonderful traditional meal. Just make sure to book your visit in advance to these wonderful tourist places in Ella.

Location: Wellawaya-Ella-Kumbalwela highway, Ella

Timings: 5:00- 8:00 pm every day

Price: LKR 3,800, INR 1,500

St. Anthony's Church

People of all faiths love to visit this magnificent stone church. Built in the 18th- century, this Roman Catholic Church still retains its old world charm. The building has beautiful paintings, murals, and stained glass windows that leave the travellers gaping at their charm. The Church has a huge garden where one can spend peaceful time listening to the hymns. 

Location: Bandarawela 90100, Ella

Timings: 7:00 am- 5:00 pm

Price: There is no entry fee


Porawagala is one of the best vantage viewpoints in the whole of Ella. Situated atop a hill, it gives a bird’s eye view of the luxuriant forests, valleys, the meadow-like pastures, and the city of Ella. Travellers love to come here and spend some quiet hours taking in the views of the waterfalls and the temples. Porawagala is a secluded place, which takes the tourists away from the chaos and noise of the cities. 

Location: Bandarawela, Ella

Timings: Porawagala is approachable the whole day. The best time to visit is at the time of the sun dawn and the sunset. 

Price: There is no entry fee

Rakkhiththa Kanda Aranya Senasanaya

Rakkhiththa Kanda Aranya Senasanaya is one of the most important archaeological places in Ella. It is a cave temple that looks like the head of a cobra protecting a statue of Buddha. There is a meditation area in this complex where you can spend some quiet and peaceful time alone absorbing in the serenity of the place. You can meet the monks and have a personal discourse on Buddhism freely. 

This temple is located atop a high ridge giving panoramic views of the surrounding hills and forests. 

Location: Rakkitha Kanda Road, Badulla Kurugama, Uva Province, Ella

Timings: Rakkhiththa Kanda Aranya Senasanaya is approachable at all times every day of the year.

Price: There is no entry fee

Demodara Railway Loop

Ella is a wonderful place when it comes to quaint things like old bridges, railway stations, and trains, etc. The Demodara Railway Loop is one such place. Constructed by the British in the 19th century, it has retained its old world charm and its unique construction has been left untouched. This bent railway track makes the train go around a loop around a mountain, which gives the impression of a man tying his turban. 

The location of the loop is especially beautiful and amongst the most interesting places to see in Ella. It is surrounded by thick green-forested land and fragrant & cool mountain air. 

Location: Demodara, Ella

Timings: The train schedule should be checked closer to ones visit as the train timings keep changing

Price: There is no entry fee 

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Ella Things To Do FAQs

Which are the best things to do in Ella?

1. Climb up the Little Adam’s Peak : Three green peaks rise over the valley below to form the magnificent crest. Hike across breathtaking scenery, going through local towns, tea plantations, and vast grasslands. Reaching the summit is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take in the breathtaking, spectacular views and feel as if you're on top of the world!

It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to climb from the bottom to the summit. On your way back from your lovely hike, keep an eye out for 98 Acres Resort. This is a nice area to sit and enjoy a cup of coffee or a cup of locally brewed tea while taking in the scenery. 

Passara Road, Ella

2. Visit Diyaluma Falls: 
Diyaluma Falls, the second-highest waterfall in Sri Lanka, is a must-see in Ella. It's the ideal opportunity to spend some time in nature while hiking to the top of the waterfall. As you discover the three natural infinity pools that reach out onto the cliffside, you'll feel on top of the world. Swimming in these waters and looking down 220 metres below is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. 

Diyaluma is just one hour drive out of Ella. 

3. Take a shower at Ravana Falls: 
Although Ravana Falls is smaller than Diyaluma, it is nevertheless breathtakingly magnificent. The falls have three tiers, with water falling through various rock pools, making it an ideal swimming spot. It's sheer delight to cool yourself from the tropical afternoon heat! Also, pack appropriate footwear so that you may easily hop in and out of the pools. 

Ravana Falls is only a 10-minute drive from Ella, down a winding hill. 

4. Explore the town of Ella: 
Apart from the wonderful natural beauty that attracts visitors from all over the world, the town boasts a lively atmosphere with excellent cafes and restaurants. Head to one of the bars on the main street if you're searching for a vibrant evening. Make sure to stop by one of the cafés for some wonderful treats and an unforgettable evening. 

Ella Town

5. Visit the famous Nine Arch Bridge for witnessing the Sunrise: 
The Nine Arch Bridge is arguably Ella's most well-known attraction. This beautiful bridge, which is flanked by lush foliage and tea estates, has become a Sri Lankan postcard. If you arrive a little earlier, you can see the beautiful sunrise. Strolling to the bridge is possible, and the closest viewpoint is 1.8 kilometres from Ella town centre. Consider taking a tuk-tuk if you don't want to walk. 


There are two trains in the morning, one at 6:15 am and the other at 6:40 am.

6. Flying the Ravana Zipline: 
The Flying Ravana Zipline is one of Ella's latest attractions and is among the best things to do in Ella. It's almost 500 metres long and travels at speeds of over 80 kilometres per hour. It's a sure-fire way to get your heart pumping! As you whiz by the spectator viewing platform, you can soak in the breathtaking sights all around you. It's also a dual zipline, so you can race your companion to the bottom or simply sit back and enjoy the journey with them. 

The zipline is located at the bottom of Little Adam’s Peak. 

The Ravana Zipline costs $20 USD for an adult and $15 USD for a child. 

7. Train ride to Haputale or Kandy: 
One of the most magnificent train rides in the world runs from Ella to Kandy. This well-known route passes through Sri Lanka's massive, seemingly endless tea plantations. The train ride to Kandy takes about 4 hours, and there are three different classes to choose from.
If comfort is important to you, first-class is the way to go, but if you want a more authentic experience, third-class is the way to go — it'll be a train ride you won't forget! This is one of the most memorable
things to do in Ella. 

From Ella to Haputale or Kandy

- Tickets cost between 50 to 1,100 rupees depending on the destination and class you choose.

8. Visit Lipton Seat: 
Lipton Seat is a beautiful viewpoint nicknamed after Thomas Lipton, the founder of tea in Sri Lanka. When you arrive at Lipton Seat, you may either explore the different tea estates or take a break at the Lipton Seat café for a cup of tea.

The viewpoint looks out over his extensive tea fields, and no journey to Sri Lanka is complete without a stop at Lipton Seat. A guided tour of Lipton Seat is also available. This tour includes a morning visit to Lipton Seat as well as a few other interesting local locations. 

Lipton Seat Road, Sri Lanka

9. Go to a Tea Factory: 
A trip to Sri Lanka isn't complete without a stop at a tea plantation. There are a few tea factories in Ella, but the Halpewatte Tea Factory is the most renowned. This tea factory is probably Sri Lanka's largest tea factory. You can also go for a stroll in the nearby tea plantations. If you've been travelling around Sri Lanka for a few weeks, this is one of the greatest things to do in Ella to detach and unwind in nature. This is one of the top things to do on Ella.

The factory is located 6kms away from the town of Ella. 

A tour of the tea factory costs 525 rupees per person and runs for 40 minutes.

10. Trip to Sigiriya: 
Sigiriya is a tiny town in Sri Lanka's central province. The Sigiriya Rock Fortress, a natural wonder and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is located here. One of the coolest things to do in Sri Lanka is to explore the remnants at the summit of this gigantic rock! You can climb the rock, see the museum, and even climb Pidurangala Rock after you get into Sigiriya. The famed Dambulla Rock Temple is also nearby and well worth a visit!

Matale District in the Central Province of Sri Lanka

11. Safari At The Udawalawe National Park: 
Despite being one of the country's smallest parks, it is home to more than 500 elephants. You'll see hordes of elephants in their natural habitat, as well as adorable baby elephants. Aside from that, the park is home to a variety of animals, including water buffalo, monkeys, crocodiles, and lizards. It's a wonderfully magical site for a safari, and it's a great chance to learn about the local flora and animals while taking in the pure air of the park. 

At the Uva Borders

$15 USD entrance

6am to 6pm

12. Visit the Dowa Rock Temple: 
It's difficult to talk about Ella without mentioning its long Ravana history. The 38-foot Buddha Statue carved into the granite rock is a sight to behold. On top of this statue's boulder, there is a stupa that conceals a cave that leads to an old tunnel known as the Ravana Guhawa. 

A16, Bandarawela

What are the things to do in Ella at night?

1. Enjoy a delectable meal in Cafe Chill: Cafe Chill is among the most attractive cafes in town, where you can spend the evening on the lovely top deck savoring beer or anything else that takes your fancy. At a low price, the restaurant offers a variety of indigenous and western dishes. Pizzas, scrumptious hamburgers, and Sri Lankan lamprais are all on the menu, and they're all must-tries! The structure itself is lovely, and it's a terrific location to unwind both day and night. Chilling out in this place is among the best things to do in Ella at night. 

2. Get yourself a Massage: 
After your Ella tourist excursions, treat yourself to a much-needed massage. If you do decide to get a massage, 98 Acres Resort is widely regarded as having the greatest spa in town. After all of your travelling and wandering across the city, you certainly deserve a royal massage. 

3. Have some Lion beers in Ella: 
You may relax at one of the fancy restaurants on the main street or have a beer at a more local eatery where the cuisine is cheap and the beers are ice cold. Lion beer is Sri Lanka's official beer, and if you haven't had it yet, Ella is the best place to do so! This is among the best things in Ella.

What are the best things to do in Ella for couples?

1. Etili Village Tour: Enjoy this private tour which includes the exploration of the traditional agricultural village of Sri Lanks, Etili. Also, you can know more about chena cultivation while enjoying your boat tour across the calm waters.

2. Sightseeing:
The beautiful town of Ella preserves numerous age-old heritages which demands a visit while exploration. So, make sure to witness Nine Arches Bridge, Ravana Falls, Ravana’s Caves, Little Adam’s Peak, and many more places.

3. Edison Bungalow:
Dates back to 1931, Edison Bungalow is an elegant example of Tudor and Jacobean style of architecture. It is a country house that now houses the Adisham monastery of Saint Benedict.

4. Tea Plantations:
Visit the aromatic tea plantations of Haputale and Bandarawela to witness the process of making tea leaves which fills your cup with a refreshing drink accompanying your evening snack.

How do I reach Ella?

Weerawila Airport is the closest to Ella. There are, perhaps, better ways to get to Ella. Superline Travels runs a bus twice daily from Colombo's Bastian Mawatha Bus Terminal to Ella. Sri Lanka Railways, on the other hand, runs a train from Hatton Station to Elle five times a day. 

What are the best things to do in Ella with friends?

1. Hiking: Get your gang together to hike in the village of Ella to witness the tropical woods, exotic flora, local fauna, and the traditional Sri Lankan vibe. Also, do not forget to sample the authentic Sri Lankan food during the visit to the village.

2. Devil’s Staircase:
14 KM long trail, Devil’s Staircase features sharp twists, steep tracks, and thrilling routes which are very the best adventurous activity in Ella to do with friends for a memorable experience.

3. Ravana Zipline Experience:
Ziplining across the lush green town of Ella with your friends is a fun activity to add to your exciting Sri Lankan tour. It is also the best way to get some aerial views of the town.

4. Cooking Classes:
Just like the old school days, get into a cooking class where you can learn sizzling and temping traditional Sri Lankan dishes of your choice.

What is the best month to go to Ella?

The ideal season to visit Ella is between January and March, when you may experience nature activities and hiking with the odd potential of rain. 

What is Ella famous for?

The town's ideal location between lowland woodlands and highland tea plantations makes it an excellent rest stop for visitors to Sri Lanka. Ella is a fantastic destination for both backpackers and affluent travellers. Little Adam's Peak and Ella Rock are two well-known excursions in the area, not to mention Ravana Falls and other well-known waterfalls.

One of the nicest things to do in Ella is ride the train over the rushing waterfalls and streams with the locals. Life in Ella is pleasant and breezy, whether you're hiking or relaxing in a nice hotel with a view of the cascades or mountains. 

Is it safe to go to Ella?

Ella is currently safe to visit. It is a place where you are unlikely to encounter any sort of violence, but you should be cautious of small crimes due to its great prevalence. 

How many days are enough in Ella?

You'll need around 2 to 3 days in Ella to take advantage of all of the amazing things to do in Ella. During your stay in Ella, you will be able to head out on a picnic trip to Ella Rock, take a dip in the Ravana Falls, climb to the top of Little Adam’s Peak, and watch the sunrise at the Nine Arch Bridge. 

Is Ella an expensive city?

Ella is relatively reasonable; if you stay in basic lodgings, you can get by on an average of $30 per day.

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