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Things To Do In Ella
Popular as Sri Lanka’s Hill Country, the gorgeous and picturesque locales of Ella are quite charming and well worth spending a few days, relaxing, soaking in the greenery and drinking tea here! One of the first things to do when in Ella is to book yourself a nice place to stay in. With plenty of accommodation options in the budget to luxury category, an eco-resort which is just a few minutes from the beautiful Diyaluma Falls is the Living Heritage Koslanda. Right in the midst of a beautiful valley with breathtaking view of the waterfall and overflowing river on site, an infinity pool with magnificent view of the rice terraces below, hiking routes and an outdoor restaurant, you will enjoy the magical ambiance of the town at best here to sound of the crickets chirping and frogs croaking. Besides a memorable stay, here are a few other things to do when in Ella.
Swimming atop the Diyaluma Falls
The Diyaluma Falls is one of the highest and most stunning waterfalls in Sri Lanka with its main drop being the most popular site to witness, as are its mini waterfalls and the spot where you can swim atop the falls. When the water level is just about right, you can swim in the mini pools at the top and even jump from one to another. The hike to the Falls takes about 2 hours, and it is best to carry plenty of munchies, water, and sunscreen, not to forget wearing comfortable footwear for your hiking journey.
Tea Plantations Tour
Sri Lanka’s encompassed by several tea fields spanning thousands of acres and hence it is only natural that you visit at least one if not more, when in Ella. Tea, being one of the country’s biggest export products and a significant industry, Ella’s tea forms an important aspect of Sri Lanka’s culture and one of the biggest factories in the Ella region is the Uva Halpewaththa Tea Factory. From getting familiar with the workings and history of the tea factory to experience a tea tasting session with gorgeous views of the tea plantation, you can also enjoy some tea-themed keepsakes and tea leaves.
You can also visit the Newburgh Factory known for Green Tea, which has its offering from the same plants, however, their process and tastes differ.
Hike to Little Adam's Peak
Situated in Central Province of Sri Lanka, Adam’s Peak is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country at 2,200 m and involves an arduous climb. However, Ella’s Little Adam’s Peak is comparatively an easier journey to make! With its hilly structure, the hike takes about 3 hours in total in terms of climbing up and going back down with plenty of spots to rest and take pictures from. An exciting activity to indulge in the hike to Little Adam’s peak is best done early morning or just before the setting sun and soak in some stunning views.
A Culinary Quest in Ella
The classes for cookery have become a popular activity in recent times, with many a requests from visiting travellers to learn the country’s cooking techniques or to get their hands on the authentic and delicious recipes from the local talents. You can look forward to some interesting streams of tiny cooking demos in the homes of the locals to extensive cooking class set-ups in different places, of which Ella Spice Garden is one.
Apart from walking around and soaking in the wondrous beauty of Ella, you can also enjoy walking down the railway tracks out of town, albeit safely and out of the train’s path for some gorgeous photo opportunities and peaceful trek. Take a break for a late afternoon snack, stop over for a drink or just sit back, sip a cup of tea and enjoy reading your favorite book.
Chasing the Waterfalls
Ella is quite renowned for its several waterfalls and you can enjoy visiting some of the most popular ones, like the Ravana Falls or the Bambaragama Waterfall with hidden caves behind the falls or short walking trails downstream with some spectacular views and experiences.
There’s the Dunhinda Falls, 25 km from Ella. It is one of highest ranked waterfalls and tourist attractions in Sri Lanka, located 5 km from the Badulla City Center on the North. It resembles a thin cloud that cascades 63 m downwards into a large pool and is about 1.5 km from the entry gate. The walk to the waterfall offers a lovely trail with wild birds, monkeys, butterflies, deer and more. The cascade is enhanced with Hal Oya, Uma Oya and small rivers from the Welimada & Bandarawela area.
Rated one of the best activities to indulge in to explore the beautiful locales of Sri Lanka, traveling on a train is the experience of a lifetime you wouldn’t want to miss! One of the most popular train journeys is between Ella and Nuwara Eliya, passing through hills, bridges, tea plantations and cascades of water.
Walking down the Demodara Loop
Identified as one of the most captivating engineering wonders in Sri Lanka, the Demodara Loop is a 15 min drive from Ella or you can also enjoy a walk, passing the nine arch bridge on the way. This curved railway was built to transport the produce from the tea estates in Uva to Colombo. With a broad gauge line constructed, the teams working on it discovered that the elevations of hills at Demodara was a bit much for the track to maintain from one end to another. Hence, an innovative styling was called for.
The Demodara Loop’s where the track passes itself in a loop and emerges from another tunnel and is 441 ft long. The station is right above the tunnel and is also the center of the loop’s crossing point, making it the only loop in the world with the station right above the tunnel at a spiral loop!