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“Educational nature”
Review of Popham's Arboretum

Popham's Arboretum
Ranked #4 of 24 things to do in Dambulla
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: The IFS-Popham Arboretum, Sri Lanka's only dry zone arboretum was established over five decades ago on 7.5 acres of thorny scrub jungle and abandoned 'Chena' land in Dambulla which is in the geographical center of our island, where history and culture merge amidst a natural landscape of water and mountains. The arboretum is not only about trees. There and many species of Birds, Butterflies, Dragonflies, Spiders and Mammals including Bats that can be seen within the premises.
Reviewed 24 September 2017

We went on the day tour AND the night tour and really enjoyed this glimpse into Sri Lankan nature and wildlife. Butterflies, insects, slender loris, bats, birds, snakes, mouse deer can all be seen in their natural habitats, as well as dozens of plants & trees. It's a place of education and research and there is a respect for the natural environment here. We turned up on the day without booking anything and had the pleasure of meeting Poorna who became our guide. He is a bright, educated, and interesting young man who is studying horticulture and has a passion for the environment he lives in. He's a real credit to the arboretum- we certainly learned a lot from him!

Quick note - if you do the night tour expect to use a lot energy! You will be walking in the pitch black in the forest with only a few torches to light the way. It's exciting and memorable (especially as we saw three slender loris!), but be careful if you are tired or don't the like idea of walking in the woods in the dark.

Thank 535ChrisS535
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jayabuddhi, Manager at Popham's Arboretum, responded to this reviewResponded 4 October 2017

thank you very much for your kind review

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"slender loris"
in 17 reviews
"night walk"
in 6 reviews
"mouse deer"
in 5 reviews
"nature lovers"
in 5 reviews
"night tour"
in 4 reviews
"nature walk"
in 3 reviews
"yellow trail"
in 3 reviews
"plants and trees"
in 3 reviews
"endemic species"
in 3 reviews
"local flora and fauna"
in 3 reviews
"slow loris"
in 2 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 6 reviews
"medicinal properties"
in 2 reviews
"red light"
in 2 reviews
"peaceful haven"
in 2 reviews
"falmouth university"
in 2 reviews
"sri lankan nature"
in 2 reviews
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29 - 33 of 108 reviews

Reviewed 6 September 2017

We had a very different evening in Sri Lanka as our guide walked us through the forest in the pitch black looking for night time creatures. The most elusive being the adorable Lorus which we all searched for and finally found ! Hearing about how it all started and the amount of work they put in was quite amazing. Certainly worth a visit while you're over here.

Thank DarrenMarlow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 August 2017

This is the only dry zone arboretum in Sri Lanka, established over 50 years ago by a british sailor. Sadly he was educated at Eton and sadly like one of prime minister he separated himself from the Europe and settled there for a long time until retirement when he returned to UK.
Here was a land scared by cut trees including native trees such as palm. He established the arboretum and now after almost 650 years it is flourishing.
It a marvelous place to see tons of butter flies, unusual and almost histori trees , bats and many other small birds including a rare giant squirrels.
The current director, a native Sri Lanka has continued to improve on it and it loos great.
You would be advised to visit for a morning or afternoon. It is in close proximity of Dumballa.
Sadly it is not supported by the government and the project is dependent on visitors and donations.

I likes most the rare buts in the old shed and massive formations of butterflies in the late afternoon.

Thank amiresteki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 August 2017 via mobile

Dedicating your life to nature,you will be always a winner.A great place to get a full idea of Sri Lanka's wildlife and beautiful plants it has.A well educated guide who has a huge amount of information and knowledge about nature,birds,animals and plants especially medical ones, guided us through the woods and provided us with unique information about the plants and animals there.Thanks a lot for giving us this opportunity to discover true Sri Lankan wildlife.
Alsuhaibany Family

Thank white g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jayabuddhi, Manager at Popham's Arboretum, responded to this reviewResponded 20 August 2017

thank you for the kind review

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 15 August 2017

The Arboretum, is full of rare trees, an ancient ebony and a vast array of exotic birds, lizards, butterflys and of course the Grey Slender Loris (an endemic species, worthy of support). The knowledgeable staff are keen to show you around and explain the now famous "Poppham method". Well worth the donation, the Loris walk in the evening is an exlperience nt to be missed and is incredible value.
Please go and support this oasis of biodiversity, you won't be dissapointed.

Thank Old_Fotofart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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