When travellers want to take a break from city life and hectic sightseeing, they retreat to Ella. Surrounded by forested mountains and tea plantations, this laid-back village in Sri Lanka's highlands is all about relaxation and reconnecting with nature.
Hiking is one of the best ways to take in Ella's lush landscapes, temples and scenic viewpoints. Little Adam's Peak and the more challenging Ella Rock trails offer panoramic views of the area's mountains. Ravana Falls is another popular hike that concludes at one of the area's more famous waterfalls, where monkeys are often spotted hanging in the trees. You'll be able to soak in more spectacular views through the Ella Gap, which looks out at a lowland rainforest between two hills.
Nine Arches Bridge is one of the few memorable landmarks in Ella. The viaduct bridge, built from stone and completed in 1921, is surrounded by tea fields and makes for a great photo op – particularly when local trains trundle across it throughout the day. Another way to experience the area is by taking a train between Ella and Kandy. The route is incredibly scenic and passes rainforests, villages, tea plantations and Horton Plains National Park.