The Nine Arch Bridge, ELLA - The Bridge in the Sky..!
The beautiful bridge that is hidden between lush green tea fields attracting tourists worldwide in ELLA, Srilanka, which is none other than the NINE ARCH BRIDGE...!
This marvel, also called as 'The Bridge in the sky', constructed in year 1921 built entirely out of brick, rock and cement, without steel, is standing solid till now and sure for many more years. History prevails that the bridge was built by the locals when the construction was kept on hold due to lack of steel during World War I. Standing at 80ft high and 300ft long attracting tourists worldwide. The bridge is located in Demodara, between the Ella and Demodara railway stations.
Glimpse of the train inching its way across the bridge making the spectacular view makes this as one of the main attractions.
- On foot from Ella - The bridge is at a distance of ~3KM from Ella station. It takes roughly about an hour to reach. The visitors will pass many guest houses with signs pointing to the destination. Many visitors can be seen walking towards the bridge
- Tuk Tuk - The easiest option is to hire a tuk-tuk from the station/town, directly to the Nine Arch Bridge. It will cost you around 200-300 LKR and will take close to 15 minutes. You can access from either side of the railway. If we approach from other side of the track, one needs to walk 10-15 minutes from the last point of the tuk-tuk stop.
Sunrise is the best time to visit the Bridge to witness stunning view and to avoid crowd. This place is crowded most of the time. Recommended to spend time and witness the train crossing the bridge for a memorable impact. The bridge is accessible all the time round the clock.
The northern end of the bridge is perfect for sunrise and the southern end is for sunset. But views from both the sides are equally gorgeous and make for good photographic moments.
The train timings are always subjected to change. Although the train timings are uncertain, and the trains are usually delayed, the tentative schedules are: 6:15 AM, 6:30 AM, 9:15 AM, 10:45 AM, 12:00 PM, 1:30 PM, 3:25 PM, 5:40 PM, 6:30 PM, and 6:45 PM.
Trains go in both directions throughout the day - Blue passenger trains or the red cargo ones traverse from Colombo to Nuwara Eliya.
Ella is a mountain village with a plenty of hotels, hostels, guest houses, and eco-lodges available for every budget. There are so many lodges overlooking bridge are available whilst so many others are nested within tea gardens.
Spending time in the lap of nature itself makes us refreshed. One can spend quality time by walking on the bridge, taking nice photographs from both the ends of the railway track. Also walk down via tea gardens to capture scenic photos.
There are few view points for the bridge:
- Southern End - Popular for Sun rise to watch the valley light up as the sun rises behind the mountains with a beautiful curve of the bridge in front.
- Northern end (In the tea field) - This is the most popular as visitor can get in to the tea fields and close to the base of the bridge. However its not possible to fully go down to the base of the bridge.
- Northern end at the viewpoint cafe - To have some snacks and admire the beauty of the landscape.
There are so many attractions nearby Ella including Little Adam's Peak, Ella Rock, Ella Spice gardens and Nature Trial Ella. However Little Adams peak and Ella rock requires trekking in the scenic atmosphere. Recommended to spend few days in Ella to explore beautiful places around.