Colombo to Kandy Train Time Table

Colombo to Kandy Train

The scenic train route between Colombo and Kandy is a must for Sri Lanka travelers. The scenic route includes vibrant tea plantations, flowing waterfalls, and lush green hills. Whenever there is motion in a train, adventure is created. Cascading waterfalls wind through rugged terrain, providing mesmerizing moments of tranquility and serenity. The Colombo to Kandy train passes through villages and towns, giving a glimpse into local life. As the train chugs, sways, and opens its doors, the scenery is breathtaking, and the trip is thrilling. You can sit comfortably or linger for pictures or views on the train. Friendly waves and smiles highlight Sri Lanka’s hospitality and warmth. Pickers gather leaves and the fragrance of newly brewed tea fills the air as you walk through the lush scenery. By taking the train from Colombo to Kandy, you can see Sri Lanka’s countryside and get away from city chaos. It is a must to travel the train from Colombo to Kandy if you love the outdoors, photography, and travel. So take the train from Colombo to Kandy to reconnect with nature, appreciate life’s simple pleasures, and marvel at the island’s wonders.

Fast train from Colombo to Kandy takes 2.5 hours. 8-10 trains run on this route on average. Different seat categories: 1st class – reclining seats, Wi-Fi & A/C, luxury. 2nd class: Cozy seats, open windows. 3rd class: Less comfortable and reserved seats. Budget travelers can opt for unreserved seats in second or third class, although they tend to be overcrowded. Sri Lankan train tickets are affordable, making them an ideal choice for budget-conscious travelers. The Colombo to Kandy train displays Sri Lanka’s hill country scenery. Train adventures are unforgettable regardless of budget or class.

Colombo to Kandy Train Time Table

PLEASE NOTE: It should be noted that some train tickets cannot be booked online within a period of 17 days. As such, booking of the train ticket must be made at least 17 days prior to departure date in order to ensure availability.

Train No Train NameDepartArrive OperationClasses Starting PriceOnline Booking
1005Podi Menike ( Express Train )05:55 08:46Daily 1st, 2nd & 3rd$13Go Here
10091009 ( A.c. - Intercity )07:05 09:38 Daily Observation, 1st & 2nd$14Go Here
1015Udarata Menike ( Express Train ) 08:30 11:03 Daily 1st, 2nd & 3rd$13Go Here
1031Intercity ( Intercity )09:4512:25Daily Observation & 2nd$14Go Here
10191019 ( Express Train )10:35 14:00 Daily 1st Class$15Go Here
10231023 ( Express Train )12:40 16:00 Daily 1st & 2nd Class $14Go Here
20252025 ( Colombo Commuter )14:30 17:15 Fri-Sat
Go Here
1029 Intercity ( Intercity )15:35 18:06 Daily Observation & 2nd$13Go Here
1035 1035 ( Express Train )16:35 19:45Daily 2nd Class$14Go Here
10371037 ( Long Distance )17:10 19:55Daily 2nd Class$13Go Here
1033Intercity ( A.c. - Intercity )17:35 20:15Friday2nd Class$14Go Here
10391039 ( Express Train )17:45 20:55Daily 2nd & 3rd Class$14Go Here
10431043 (Night Express Train)19:30 22:30Daily 1st, 2nd & 3rd$14Go Here

Colombo to Kandy Train Guide

  • Train 1005 is an express train that departs from Colombo station in the early morning at 05:55 and arrives at Kandy station in the morning at 08:46. The Podi Menike Express Train runs between Sundays and Mondays. With the Podi Menike Express Train, it is possible to travel between Colombo and Kandy in a fast, comfortable and convenient manner without having to worry about delays. In addition, the train also offers a variety of class options, such as First Class, Second Class, and Third Class, so that passengers can choose from different classes according to their budget and preferences.
  • Train 1009 leaves Colombo at 07:00 am and arrives in Kandy at 09:38 am. On Saturdays, Kandy may be crowded, especially since thousands of locals commute from Colombo to Kandy on Saturdays. So plan ahead for a comfortable journey during busy times. Book early and arrive early to ensure a train seat.
  • Train 1015 (Udarata Menike Express) departs Colombo at 08:30 and reach in Kandy after 3-hours. It travels to Sri Lanka’s hill country, including Kandy, Nuwara Eliya, and Badulla. You will enjoy stunning views of landscapes, tea plantations, and villages on a comfortable 3-hour journey. Be ready to xperience local culture on this train ride and connect with travelers from around the world.
  • Train 1031, called Intercity, runs on weekends. It leaves Colombo at 09:00 and arrives at Kandy at 11:31. Train 1031 stops at few stations on route.
  • Train 1019 is an Express Train  that departs from Colombo Fort at 10:35 and arrives in Kandy at 13:52. It’s an express train that operates daily from Colombo to Kandy. Enjoy your journey on the 1019  Train from Colombo to Kandy, and take in the beautiful landscapes and cultural richness along the way!
  • Train 1023 departs in the early afternoon and takes about 3 hours and 20 minutes to arrive at Kandy station. First and second-class compartments are available. 1st-class compartments have roomier seats, bigger windows, and more legroom for comfy travels. 2nd class offers budget-friendly seats with comfort.
  • Train 2025 runs on Fridays and Saturdays, offering an alternative route between Colombo and its destination in less than 3 hours. Ideal for commuters and travelers.
  • Train  1019 runs daily, providing a convenient option for passengers traveling between the designated destinations. Train 2029 offers Observation and 2nd class. Observation class ioffers great views and comfy seating while 2nd class is cheaper, still comfy.
  • Train 1035 goes from Colombo to Kandy every day at 16:35, taking 3 hours 10 mins to cover 115 km. 2nd class offers comfy seating and budget-friendly option with cushioned seats and fair legroom . Board the 1035 Express Train from Colombo to Kandy and capture the breathtaking views.
  • Train 1037 is an exhilarating long-haul journey train with allure and thrill. Leaves Colombo at 17:10, 2nd class with lively spacious seating showcasing local culture and stunning views of tea plantations and mountains. The rhythmic wheel sounds provide a window into town life. Train 1037 arrives at 19:55 after a breathtaking journey through Sri Lanka’s scenery, culture, and hospitality.
  • Train 1033 is a Friday-only Intercity service between Colombo to Kandy, providing a convenient travel solution for those travelling on Friday. Train 1033 provides a comfy and easy trip and gets visitor to Kandy quicker.
  • Train 1039 provides a daily service for passengers traveling between Colombo to Kandy. Both second and third-class options allow passengers to choose their comfort. Second-class has comfy seats and a nice trip whle third-class is cheaper for budget-minded travelers.
  • Train 1043 is a comfortable evening train option that gets passengers to Kandy by night. The train runs daily, allowing flexibility for passengers on Train No. 1043 passengers can choose 1st, 2nd, or 3rd Class for varying budgets and preferences.

Difference Between 1st, 2nd and 3rd Class

Colombo to Kandy train route has three different seating classes available: First Class, Second Class, and Third Class, and each class offers a different level of comfort and service. The breakdown of each class is as follows:

First Class: First class cabins are equipped with air conditioners so that passengers who board the Colombo to Kandy train in Sri Lanka can enjoy the ultimate in comfort and privacy during their travel. With a train from Colombo to Kandy offering the ultimate in luxury and comfort for its passengers, you can travel in elegant and convenient carriages, seats with individual privacy, while in First Class you can enjoy large legroom and comfort with adjustable backrests and air conditioning to ensure you get a comfortable trip. With premium amenities and exceptional customer service, you will definitely enjoy a luxurious train ride and create wonderful memories for a lifetime.

Advantages of First Class

  • First Class on the train from Colombo to Kandy offers enhanced comfort thanks to roomy seats, plush padding, and lots of legroom.
  • First Class has more private sitting arrangements than other classes, providing more seclusion.
  • For passenger comfort, First Class features air conditioning and movable backrests.
  • With its roomy seats, generous legroom, and cushioned sitting, first class offers the highest level of luxury and relaxation.
  • First Class cabins offer protection from heat, dust, and noise with closed doors and windows for a comfortable and peaceful journey.

Disadvantages of First Class

  • To guarantee a seat, reserve 30 days in advance.
  • First Class has fewer opportunities for socialising and is often more expensive than other classes.
  • More expensive premium amenities.
  • There aren’t many First Class seats available, especially when it’s busy season.
  • Limited interaction with nature as closed windows and doors prevent passengers from appreciating scenic beauty, sounds and fresh air. The closed windows also limit photo opportunities.

Second Class: With open-plan carriages, second class follows first class. In Second Class, the arrangement of the seats and the availability of air conditioning will vary depending on the train. However, Second Class offers a comfortable and affordable option with good legroom and a relaxed ambience. Second class tickets are cheaper than first class. 2nd class ticket prices range from 200-400 LKR, based on train and carriage type.

Advantages of Second Class

  • Second Class tickets are more budget-friendly than First Class, making it a cost-effective option for travelers.
  • Great views with open windows throughout the journey. Experience the breathtaking landscapes and natural beauty on the Colombo to Kandy route firsthand.
  • Second Class offers social interaction with local plenty of middle class local.

Didvantages of Second Class

  • Second Class is overcrowded and uncooled during peak travel periods, which is uncomfortable as it has fans rather than AC.
  • Compared to First Class, Second Class features less luxurious seating and fewer facilities.
  • Second Class carriages, especially at peak hours, can be cramped and uncomfortable.

Third Class: Usually they are cramped, dirty compartments on a train with hard wooden benches crowded with locals, travelers, and people who can’t afford second or first class. Moreover, some passengers may experience less than pleasant conditions when traveling with animals and livestock, which can make the experience even more cramped and uncomfortable than they might be used to, resulting in an even more stressful and uncomfortable trip.

Advantages of Third Class 

  • Third Class tickets are typically the least expensive option, making them an affordable option for travellers on a tight budget.
  • Third Class tickets are typically easier to find than higher class seats, especially during busy travel times.

Disdvantages of Third Class 

  • Third Class seats tend to be simpler and may provide less cushioning or legroom than higher classes, which could make the trip less comfortable, particularly on prolonged journeys.
  • Third Class carriages may get packed, especially during busy travel times or peak hours, leading to a lack of personal space and possible discomfort.
  • Third Class carriages without air conditioning can be problematic in hot and muggy conditions.

Reserved vs  Unreserved Tickets 

Sri Lanka Railways offers two seat options.

  • Reserved tickets bought in advance and assigned seats at the station. At peak times, reserved tickets sell out weeks ahead.
  • Unreserved tickets are only available the day of the trip.

Reserved Advantages

  • The benefits of reserved train tickets include guaranteed seating and comfort with cushioned seats, extra legroom, and adjustable backrests – ideal for busy periods or long journeys.
  • Enjoy stress-free boarding by arriving close to departure and avoiding seat searches.
  • Reserved tickets provide a more comfortable seat as well as priority boarding to prevent overcrowding.
  • Flexibility to choose seat type and class based on budget and comfort. Reserved tickets are recommended for stress-free long journeys with guaranteed seats.

Reserved Disdvantages

  • Limited supply of reserved tickets, particularly during busy travel times or on popular routes.
  • Booking in advance is required.
  • In general, reserved tickets are more expensive than unreserved tickets, especially for seats in higher classes. This may be a problem for those on a tight budget.
  • Your travel arrangements become committed once you have a ticket reserved, making it more difficult to change the departure time or date without incurring additional fees.

Unreserved Advantages

  • Unreserved tickets are frequently less expensive than reserved tickets, making them a more affordable choice for tourists.
  • Getting unreserved tickets close to departure gives you more freedom to change your trip arrangements.
  • Interacting with local commuters is frequently possible in unreserved carriages, providing a more genuine cultural experience.

Unreserved Disdvantages

  • Travellers may need to stand or find a position in a crowded carriage if they purchase unreserved train tickets.
  • In unreserved carriages, boarding and seating are first-come, first-served.
  • Increased seat likelihood with early arrival.
  • Latecomers can wait for the next train while standing.
  • Unreserved tickets allow for flexibility in travel arrangements, allowing for last-minute purchases, impulsive travel, or itinerary modifications.

Colombo to Kandy Train Tips

If you’re planning to take the train from Colombo to Kandy, here are some tips to enhance your experience:

  • Book your tickets in advance: Train tickets in Sri Lanka can sell out quickly, especially between Colombo to Kandy route. It’s advisable to book your tickets in advance to secure your seat.
  • Choose the right class: Sri Lanka trains offer different classes, including 1st Class, 2nd Class, and 3rd Class. The classes vary in terms of comfort and price. If you prefer a more comfortable journey, consider opting for 1st Class or 2nd Class. However, if you’re on a budget or looking for a more authentic experience, 3rd Class can be a good option. But, Be prepared for the crowd in 3rd-class. Possibility of standing during the journey or having limited space is huge.
  • Pack snacks and water: While some Sri Lankan trains have food vendors onboard, it’s always a good idea to carry some snacks and water with you, especially for longer journeys. This will ensure you have something to eat and drink during the trip.
  • Capture the views: The train journey from Colombo to Kandy is known for its scenic beauty. Make sure to have your camera ready to capture the stunning landscapes, tea plantations, and picturesque villages along the way. However, be mindful of safety and avoid leaning out of the train windows while taking photos.
  • Engage with fellow passengers: Train journeys provide an excellent opportunity to interact with locals and fellow travelers. Strike up a conversation and learn more about the local culture, traditions, and recommendations for your visit to Kandy.
  • Plan your onward travel: Once you arrive in Kandy, have a plan for your onward travel. If you have accommodation booked, arrange for transportation from the train station to your hotel in advance. However, Tuk-tuks and taxis are readily available outside the station.

By keeping these tips in mind, you can make the most of your train journey from Colombo to Kandy and enjoy the scenic beauty of Sri Lanka’s countryside.

Frequently Asked Question

Q: How long does the train journey from Colombo to Kandy take?

A: The train journey from Colombo to Kandy typically takes around 3 hours-5, depending on the type of train and its schedule. Some express trains may offer a faster journey, while slower trains or scenic routes may take longer.

Q: Are train tickets from Colombo to Kandy available online?

A: Yes, train tickets for Sri Lanka Railways can be booked online through by going here.

Q: Are there different types of trains operating from Colombo to Kandy?

A: Yes, there are different types of trains operating on the Colombo to Kandy route, including express trains, intercity trains, commuter trains, and observation cars. These trains may have different schedules, travel times, and classes available.

Q: Can I bring luggage on the train?

A: Yes, you can bring luggage on the train. However, it’s recommended to travel with manageable-sized bags as storage space can be limited, especially during peak travel times. Be prepared to keep your luggage with you or in the designated storage areas within the train compartments.

Q: Are there restrooms on the train?

A: Yes, most train carriages have restroom facilities. However, the cleanliness and conditions of the restrooms can vary. It’s a good idea to carry tissues or toilet paper and hand sanitizer with you for your convenience.

Q: Are there power outlets or Wi-Fi available on the train?

A: Power outlets and Wi-Fi are generally not available on Sri Lankan trains. It’s advisable to charge your electronic devices beforehand and have offline entertainment options for the journey.

Q: Is there a specific dress code for train travel in Sri Lanka?

A: There is no specific dress code for train travel in Sri Lanka. However, it is advisable to dress comfortably and modestly, considering the local culture and customs.


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