Nestled in the charming mountain village of Ella, Sri Lanka, the Nine Arch Bridge, affectionately known as the "Bridge in the Sky," is an architectural marvel that captures the essence of colonial-era railway construction. This iconic bridge gracefully spans 91 meters at an awe-inspiring height of 24 meters, presenting a striking testament to the blend of local craftsmanship and British engineering expertise that went into its creation.
This remarkable structure is often credited to the vision of a local Ceylonese builder, P. K. Appuhami, who collaborated closely with British engineers. Notably, the chief designer and project manager behind the ambitious 'upcountry railway line of Ceylon' was the distinguished Ceylonese engineer and inventor, D. J. Wimalasurendra. The viaduct's intricate design was brought to life by Harold Cuthbert Marwood, a key figure in the Railway Construction Department of Ceylon Government Railway.
For those eager to delve into the historical archives, the 1923 report titled "Construction of a Concrete Railway Viaduct in Ceylon" by the Engineering Association of Ceylon provides a treasure trove of details, including original plans and drawings. Located in Demodara, between Ella and Demodara railway stations, this site has witnessed a surge in tourism, thanks to the bridge's architectural splendor and the lush, verdant hillsides that envelop it.
Legend has it that during the initial stages of construction, as the rumblings of the Great War echoed across Europe, the steel allocated for this project was diverted to support Britain's wartime efforts on the battlefront. Undaunted, the local community stepped in, using stone bricks and cement to complete the bridge, bypassing the need for steel. This captivating backstory adds an intriguing layer to the bridge's history.
The Nine Arch Bridge stands as an idyllic panorama, set amidst a dense jungle and a patchwork of vibrant agricultural fields. As you traverse its nine graceful arches, the lush forest stretches behind, while below, the rolling hills are adorned with thriving tea plantations. It's a picture-perfect fusion of nature and human ingenuity, a must-visit destination that seamlessly weaves history, engineering, and natural beauty into the fabric of Ella's enchanting landscape.
"CyrilWe are now back at home after the lovely time with you in Sri Lanka, andvisiting Hong Kong.Thank you for driving for us while we were in Sri Lanka.In particular, we appreciated - your smooth, calm and efficient driving through varied traffic conditions - your calmness when things did not go quite as expected - your being available at all times of day - I'm remembering our late arrival at the airport, and our late departure - your information about all sorts of ..." Cliff Hooker and Jean from Australia
"(10 days). Before the trip I did a lot of research here on the site and other sites on the tour options and after checking in we decided to go with a guide attached. Choice in was not easy and I started Travels "correspondence with more than ten guides to staying with the" chosen ". No doubt it was an excellent choice! Before Asbury on our guide, I wanted to note that after the visit, I understand the importance of taking guide (driver) suite. Roads and driving in Sri Lanka ..." Corey
"We highly appreciated Cyril as our chauffeur guide. We can easily speak with him about any subject. We learnt a lot about Sri Lanka' s culture, history and way of life. He arrange everything we asked. In the airport on arrval his welcome is marvelous. His English language is superb and very clear. His knowledge and expanation about the sites are unique. More than the all he is very friendly and punctual. We will recommend him all the people who willing to come to Sri Lanka." COMBE MARTIAL AND WILD EMMANUEL FROM FRANCE
"We are an older couple celebrating a lot of years of marriage (and hiking) in Sri Lanka in February this year, for two weeks, and three days in the Maldives. Although we love to drive, we chose to go with a driver-guide, after planning the trip completely independently. (It turned out he might help us in the planning and selection of hotels, we own). The main advantage is reaching the sites, some of which are tired, refreshed after someone else used to bad roads, with bad signage - If you are i..." Sam
"Dear Cyril, Thank you very much for wonderful holiday. Your attention to detail and care of your clients is extraordinary. We certainly hope to cross paths again and we will recommonding you to all of our friends and to family too. Many thanks again. Paul nad Machelle Brisbane, Australia. Visited during 10/10/2012 - 26/10/2012" Mr. Paul and Mrs. Machelle from Australia
"We had an excellent and memorable trip and all credits to Cyril. In-depth knowledge about the places, roads and history and culture. From the airport assistance - Food, accommodation provided and the vehicle was excellent. Very matured and patient, We being on safe hands. Thanks for making it a memorable experience for all of us. " Aubry De Souza and group from Dubai
"Cyril Tours is a very good agency. Because we did use it from 01st of March to 14 March 2013. From the start till end of our emails, he has (Mr.Cyril) given all required details. Also he send us very detailed itinerary with pictures. Actually no need guide after go through it.Cyril Tours is not a big agency. He was a guide in Sri Lanka more than 26 years. Many clients recommend him to their friends and to relatives who want to visit Sri Lanka.They asked from him to travel, that is why he be..." John and Mary from Canada
"We found Cyril on-line and after checking with lots of other guides we decided he is the one for us, that decision was the best one we did for our trip From the beginning, in our emails, Cyril listen to us and was very helpful, he gave us information and helped us to create the best trip for us.We had 10 days trip, for our honeymoon, to many parts of Sri-Lanka. the country is amazing, green, nice people and good food.Cyril was a great driver and even greater guide, he has so much knowledge and e..." Coral and Oded from Israel
"Dear Cyril, We would like to thank youthat you have arrange ourholiday which we have enjoyed so much, that we can call them the best holiday we have ever had. You are avery helpful guide- because you know about your beautiful country very much. We also appriciate your advices that you gave us during our two weeks long journey and your perfect trip arrangement we have enjoyed every single day. All the best to you and your family. Hope to see you again. Martha & Jarda 08 No..." Martha & Jaroslav Jirout
" Hi Cyril We have had a fabulous holiday driven and guided by Cyril from CYRIL TOURS. Hotel recommendations were perfect and knowledge supertb. We would happy to introduce CYRIL TOURS to our frieinds and relatives. Thank you for the photos you are taken and send to us, they are a great reminder of our amazing experience in Sri Lanka. We had a truly memorable time and we are grateful to you for all your knowledge and guidance throughout our trip, it would not have been..." Mr. Richard & Mrs. Bridget Simson and family from