Highland Spice Garden, Matale

1.4
#11 of 16 in Parks in Matale
Highland Spice Garden is located in Matale. Plan your visit to Highland Spice Garden and a wealth of other attractions, well-known and undiscovered, using our Matale day trip planner .
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Highland Spice Garden Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 2.5
103 reviews
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2.8
TripAdvisor
  • I had read in Lonely Planet that these places were full of hustlers, but my fiancée wanted to go so we did. It was one big long and awkward sales pitch but that’s fine, I didn’t mind that till we got ...  more »
  • I agree, makes the business of tour operators and we have done with your eyes closed! I had a doubt on the quality of oil of sandalwood that I still paid 13600 rps! Back home, I found that the product is viscous and feels rather sandalwood oil!
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  • Our driver proposes to stop on the way to the spice garden, we quickly take a look in our Lonely Planet that tells us "Not to miss" so we accept! The visit takes about 30 minutes, or a "trainee doctor in Herbalism" explains the benefits of the products (ideal for cancer, cholesterol, and a depilatory cream that removes hair forever...) Then the tour ends with the "Pharmacy" or prices are sky-high as well for the lotions for spices (5 to 6 x more expensive than elsewhere), and poor quality. Avoid at all costs, dishonest people, it's too bad for Sri Lanka. LARGE TRAPS HAS TOURISTS
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  • Unfortunately, we stopped here on the recommendation of our driver. You are met by very friendly staff who present themselves as horticulturists and/or Ayurvedic doctors. You are then introduced to various herbs as you walk along a path. Do not expect lush or manicured gardens, because instead you will find single plants of each variety in varying states of upkeep. You must have complete lack of knowledge about the medicinal benefits of common herbs to enjoy this introduction to the various plants. For example, you will learn that vanilla is a creeper and part of the orchid family, that turmeric has anti-bacterial properties, that citronella helps to repel insects, that Aloe vera is good for sunburn, etc. Afterwards, you will meet in an outdoor room where you are first told that everything is free and depend on your enjoyment to freely donate.... here is where the alarm should sound and you should leave, otherwise you will be entertained by a quick 15min massage (which was good enough I should say), and then a list of around 40 products from their shop, which you can tick as they are explained. Of course, the ailments that can eligibly be cured by these products make you want to mark almost every product on the list; so that you can cure everything from headache, weight loss, insomnia, diabetes, virility, natural firming, enlargement, and what not. You are then taken to the shop full of excitement that you will be able to afford most of the items you ticked on the list so that you can ensure a healthier life for yourself. After selecting the smallest bottle of sandalwood oil, you quickly start to delete items from your shopping list, and you start to look for the product that cure stress instead. End of the story, we left with only 2 items and rather frustrated by having wasted enough time so that we had to head straight back to Negombo and had to miss the rock temple in Dambulla. My advice if you are interested in herbs, use google, and if you want Ayurvedic medicine, visit your local Ayurvedic shop where undoubtedly you will find similar cures for all your ailments.
  • Avoid this place. Sorry to say it but these guys just want to take your money. Everything is very-very expensive. If you ask them to tell you the price before you buy they won't say a word because they want to trick you. I am honestly telling you, AVOID THEM, and don't even go close to them. They will try to full you with massage and other stuff. Avoid them !
  • This is a highlight in Sri Lanka which many foreigners love to visit. They may get a chance to see and learn about wealth of trees and plants with endless number of benefits to the mankind.
  • Friendly staff, their goal is to sell ayurveda things to you. You can receive tea and massage for free (pay if you like). But prices for ayurveda things are high.
  • Knowledgeable guide , but eager for sales . Extortionate prices for three small items . Save your money and have a good meal out

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Where to stay in Matale

You'll find some fairly standard guesthouses and small hotels in Matale's main urban area, never straying very far from the station and the parks of the city center. Alternatively, explore out of town to the north, east, or south for a host of other more characterful accommodations that show off the fruits of the area, including campgrounds, ecolodges, and farmstays. For a much greater choice of places to stay, look in Kandy, one hour to the south.
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