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Matale is the second largest municipal and urban centre in the Central Province after Kandy. Matale is located at the heart of the central hills of the island and lies in a broad, fertile valley. On the east side of the city is the Knuckles Mountain Range.

Matale is surrounded by large plantations and is famous for its spice gardens. For centuries, spices have been one of the most celebrated exports in Sri Lanka. Spices are being used for a long time for medicines, cosmetics as well as to flavour foods. History says that the Greeks, Arabs, and Malays had linked with the Sri Lankan business field through the spice trade.

One of the most famous Hindu temples is in Matale, called Sri Muthumariamman Kovil Temple. This temple is devoted to Mariamman, the god of rain and fertility. The history of Sri Muthumariamman Temple goes back to the 19th century. This temple is utilised by both Hindus and Buddhists.

The Aluvihare Rock Cave Temple is located in Matale. Aluvihare is where the verbal education of Buddhism (Tripitaka) was drafted into Pali Canon on ola (palm) leaves. This monastery complex is a fascinating place with caves, religious paintings, and stupas and dates back to the third century BC, to the reign of King Devanampiyatissa.


Nalanda Gedige

Close to Matale, you can find Nalanda Gedige, an ancient complete stone temple. Its original site was the centre of Sri Lanka. This site has mystified visitors with its strange mix of Hindu and Buddhist architecture. It is believed to be constructed between the 8th and 10th century and the structure was rediscovered in 1893.

Heritage & Culture

The island of Sri Lanka has one of the most diversified cultural populations in the world. Sri Lankan culture comprises several practices and rituals that stretch back more than 2000 years and have been passed down through generations.