Catching the Train From Kandy to Ella – Sri Lanka Day 7
This post is about catching the train From Kandy to Ella. Ella is a small “tourist town” in the hills of Sri Lanka.
This catching the train From Kandy to Ella post includes a Temple of the Tooth review and a home-stay in Ella review.
It also has information on directions, daily cost summary, other useful information, and perhaps some not so useful personal observations and opinions.
Well I slept on it and this morning the internet wasn’t working so first thing (after a quick work out and breakfast) I went to the train station to suss out catching the train from Kandy to Ella. I had enough time so I went back to the hotel to get my things and checked out the Temple of the Tooth on the way.
Temple of the Tooth Review
Cost: 500LKR for SAARC country citizens (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) or 1000LKR for everyone else.
If you do not know what a SAARC country is, you are probably not a citizen of one.
I didn’t actually go in but decided to do a short Temple of the Tooth review anyway as it is said that the tooth of Buddha is located here and it is probably the most sacred site in Sri Lanka. I definitely would have gone in if I was staying another night in Kandy.
In any case, the map of the Temple of the Tooth looked interesting and there seems to be a lot in there. You can go up to it for free, you just can’t actually go into the grounds.
Getting to the Temple of the Tooth – Kandy
Getting to the Temple of the Tooth is easy because it is right in the middle of town. Look on the map. It is literally across the road from the Olde Empire Hotel.
Catching the Train From Kandy To Ella
Catching the train from Kandy to Ella was AMAZING. It is easily the best scenic train ride I have ever been on.. although I haven’t been on many.
Trains leave from Kandy at 0830, 1110, and 1230 (check this at the train station).
The guy at information counter said that you can’t book tickets ahead of time when catching the train from Kandy to Ella, or reserve a seat, but when I went to buy the ticket he asked me when I wanted it for, and what kind of ticket I wanted. I got a 3rd class seat for 400LKR.
When catching the train from Kandy to Ella request a window seat, preferably on the right hand side of the train as it goes forwards (for the best views, in my opinion).
I think if you don’t want to reserve a seat it is about 280LKR.
I got the 1110 (which actually left Kandy at 1120-ish) and arrived in Ella just shy of 1800 or there about’s.
I highly recommend catching the train from Kandy to Ella, or at least somewhere along this stretch. The scenery is breathtaking.
Here’s a 30 second video of scenery when catching the train from Kandy to Ella. It does not do it justice at all, but I took it, so here it is.
I’ve decided not to book any accommodation for the rest of the trip as, like Vietnam, finding accommodation does not seem to be a problem. Anyway, once in Ella I found a home-stay fairly quickly.
Home-Stay in Ella Review – Unknown Name
Cost: 1500/night, cheaper if you share rooms
After getting the train from Kandy to Ella I walked down the road a bit and a woman asked if I needed accommodation, so I stayed there. Here is my home-stay in Ella Review, though I never caught the name of the place.
It is a home-stay. The family is very nice and it may be the cheapest place in Ella.
They also serve food and served up an amazing curry for dinner (250LKR) and a big traditional Sri Lankan breakfast (also 250LKR). Rooms are decent. No fan but it’s not needed in Ella.
Shared bathroom, no hot water and dodgy internet. Good location, but then Ella is very small so most of the accommodation is in a good location.
Getting to the Home-stay in Ella
Getting to the home-stay in Ella is easy if coming from the train station.
Get off the train, walk down the road. It is on the left. There are signs for food. The daughter will probably be out the front to ask you if you want a room.
Once checked in to my home-stay in Ella I got some postcards from the local supermarket then went back for a pretty good rice and curry dinner with two other guests.. a Dutch lad and a Hungarian gentleman. It made for interesting conversation.
This Ella accommodation review was for a hotel/guesthouse that is not on any booking sites. If you want to be safe, you can book ahead your accommodation in Ella.
Costs Summary for Getting the Train From Kandy To Ella
Small eats. 185LKR
Food Costs Total: 185LKR
Catching the train from Kandy to Ella. 400LKR
Transportation Costs Total: 400LKR
Olde Empire Hotel. 1200LKR
Accommodation Costs Total: 1200LKR
Other Costs Total: 270LKR
Grand Total for Day 7: 2055LKR
Grand Total in USD (Approx): $15.45
The highlight of my day was definitely catching the the train from Kandy To Ella, and is also a highlight of the trip for me so far. I think I will catch trains more often when traveling from now on.
Do you have experience catching the train from Kandy to Ella? Help out other readers and leave your tips and/or updated information in the comments 😀 .