Discovering Ella Rock: A Spectacular Hiking Adventure in Sri Lanka.
Ella Rock and Ella- Wellawaya Route from Distance

Ella Rock is a popular hiking destination you won’t want to miss during your time in Ella City. This mountain can be spotted quite easily throughout Ella City, whether you’re heading towards Wellawaya or arriving from there. Nevertheless, embarking on a hike up Ella Rock ranks among the top experiences Ella, Sri Lanka, has to offer.


Hike to Ella Rock

Ella stands as a mountainous city in Sri Lanka, sitting at an elevation of 1041m above sea level. However, hiking up Ella Rock doesn’t present itself as a walk in the park. It leans towards a moderate level of difficulty, demanding a decent level of fitness from all who attempt it. The trail stretches over nearly 6 kilometers to reach the pinnacle, ensuring you’ll spend at least 4–5 hours completing the entire journey.



Countless trailheads lead to Ella Rock, with most remaining unknown and rarely utilized by locals. Here, we share with you one common trailhead frequented by both tourists and locals alike. While it’s possible to attempt the hike solo or without guidance, having a local guide accompany you is highly beneficial to ensure you stay on the right track towards the peak. A prevalent trailhead begins at Ella railway station; from there, you’ll need to head in the direction of Kithal Ella railway station, following the train tracks. The journey offers breathtaking views of landscapes, mountains, valleys, and tea plantations until you finally reach Kithal Ella Railway Station, even passing over a narrow bridge along the way.


Our Guests During Hike to Ella Rock

(Our guests during their hike to Ella Rock)



Journey toward the Peak.

After passing Kithal Ella Railway Station, keep trekking for another 10 minutes until you come across a small footpath on the left near a ‘Bo Tree.’ This downward path should be your next route, followed by reaching a small footbridge just a few meters ahead. Continue onward, taking the right path after crossing the small bridge. You’ll then traverse an upward, narrow path leading into a tea estate. After crossing the estate, opt for the left direction at its conclusion.

More path-walking will eventually bring you to a small shop. From there, choose the rightward direction and forge ahead until you reach a Eucaptalyst forest. Along the way, you’ll encounter several scenic viewpoints offering stunning vistas of the surrounding areas. Despite the gradual increase in slope, some sections may wear you out a bit. Keep moving forward until you reach the summit of Ella Rock, a journey lasting about 2–3 hours, the duration dependent on your physical fitness from the trailhead.


View Points of the Ella Rock

Your exhaustion will vanish upon reaching one of Ella Rock’s numerous viewpoints, offering absolutely stunning panoramic scenes to behold. From these vantage points, you can also catch sight of Little Adams Peak, another renowned hiking spot in Ella. Moreover, views of Ravana Ella Waterfall and its upper waterfall, Bandarawela, Kumbalwela, Lipton Seat, mountains towards Punagala, Ella city, Ella-Wellawaya Main Road, Wellawaya area, and most parts of the Monaragala and Hambanthota regions can all be taken in from Ella Rock.

Two primary viewpoints are situated here, each providing distinct yet equally gorgeous views, making them perfect spots to experience nature’s beauty and snap some memorable photos. At the summit, a small shop awaits where you can indulge in some delicious fruit juice that’ll surely rejuvenate you.


The best time to hike Ella Rock

The best time for hiking Ella Rock is believed to be from February to April. The period from October to February marks the wet season in the region, creating muddy hiking conditions, thus making it a challenging period for the hike. On the other hand, hiking between May and September proves favorable, albeit with dryer conditions. Arriving before dawn can offer breathtaking sunrise views from the eastern side, while sunset serves as a lovely time to visit and capture some delightful pictures. Hence, early mornings and late evenings shape up as ideal times to conquer the hike up Ella Rock.


Reverting to the same route will return you to Kithal Ella Railway station, signaling the completion of your Ella Rock hike.


Points to Reflect on Prior to the Hike.

  • Commencing your hike early in the morning is advisable since afternoons witness high traffic, making the trek difficult.
  • Remember to carry an ample water supply with you, though shops and vendors can be found along the path should you need a refill.
  • During the rainy season, the hike grows increasingly challenging due to wet soil and numerous leeches; thus, it’s recommended to steer clear of this period when in the Ella area.
  • Be considerate, and avoid disturbing wildlife.
  • With several routes and trailheads available, you may find yourself at a crossroads, so don’t hesitate to seek guidance from locals or enlist the help of a local guide to ensure you stay on course.
  • Dispose of polythene, plastic, and trash responsibly while on the hike, and make sure to take back with you any items you may bring but not need.
  • Along the hike, you’ll encounter local vendors providing essentials, making it convenient to meet your requirements en route.



(Cover Image Credit: Sanjay Pathmanathan Photography )

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harshana piyasinghe


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