The Ultimate Ceylon Cinnamon experience with kids in Sri Lanka

The Ultimate Ceylon Cinnamon experience with kids in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka being rather a small country has a huge variety of things to experience. We already did Tea Plantation tour and tasting, Snake Farm experience, Surfing experience but I always wanted to find out how the cinnamon of Ceylon is grown and cultivated – Ceylon is known for its fantastic cinnamon after all and is the leader in cinnamon export.

We always aim to have a local experience as otherwise it tends to be very commercialized and does not do anything good to the locals or local economy. We asked around and found a family that has a small cinnamon farm on their land and that they show the whole process to a few people. The whole tour and cinnamon tea tasting is absolutely FREE, but you are expected to buy something from them.

The jungle house that the cinnamon growers live is just a short drive from Koggala and easy to find as they send you a google link for the location as well as they come to meet you at the main road with the scooter and lead the way. Once we enter their property right by the cinnamon trees, the whole area is filled with a strong cinnamon aroma which is fantastic (and also a bug repellent). Everything looks simple and brings out great energy.

We were brought to look around and offered fresh opened coconuts to replenish. As many as we wanted. And very very good indeed. When asked how many coconuts one coconut tree produces per year- the answer was 300. Wow. We are a total coconut junkies.

The tour/ experience took us to the farm, cinnamon tree field to learn about growing cinnamon, which one is ready to be harvested, how long it takes to regrow after cutting and how all the parts are being used- nothing ever gets thrown away. Same with coconuts.

So at first the cinnamon tree branch is cut off, the leaves are taken off (they are used to make oil) and then the the soft outer layer is peeled off with a very sharp type of peeler/ knife (not sure what is the right name, but more importantly it is very sharp). the kids also got to do it- it is a very hands on experience- they loved the peeling process! After it is peeled off, they use a brass roller to roll on the trunk of the cinnamon tree branch to help bring the oils and water to the surface – it helps to cut cinnamon peels better after it is done.

Only a very thin layers is being extracted and then it has to be cut in pieces for it to be drying for 10 days.

This experience has brought our attention to how much work and precision goes into growing and cultivating cinnamon that we have on our tables.

One important thing we learned: Ceylon cinnamon has a lighter, brighter and spicier flavor than cassia cinnamon and it has 63 times LESS coumarin than cassia so it is safer to use, especially in large quantities therefore is safer to use even in large quantities. Coumarin substance is actually very toxic to your liver and kidney, so always opt out to Ceylon cinnamon as it will not bring any burden to your internal organs.

After the whole experience we were offered cinnamon tea and ginger biscuits- after which we asked for seconds. It was that good.

As the experience was fantastic and is free of charge no matter how many people come – you are expected either to tip or buy something from the growers. We bought a bunch of their cinnamon and also tipped them as it was a fantastic experience for adults and the children.

I am also attaching the phone number and map of the location where the cinnamon farm is located- the owner gave me permission to share. Hope you enjoy the experience as we did- thank you for reading!

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