Mangosteen arrived to Sri Lanka from Southeast Asia. It is highly valued for its perfect combination of acids and sugars. Mangosteen trees are very large and they grow primarily in dry regions of the country. Kalutara, Kegalle, Kandy, Matale, Galle, and Gampaha are famous for its mangosteen production. Mangosteen is also abundant in Kalutara when it's in season. The rind of the fruit is deep purple, while the flesh is white and soft. The white part is edible. The juice of the fruit is also really popular for its sour-sweet taste.
Rambutan, known botanically as Nephelium lappaceum, is a tropical tree that did not originate from native soil. It is believed that the Portuguese brought the first Rambutan seeds to Sri Lanka from Malaysia. According to ancient folklore they had a fortress in Malwana and found that the soil in the Kelani Valley was ideal for the plant to thrive. Although this fruit is not native to our little island, it is very popular and much sought after by the locals. Street sales of Rambutan were first introduced along the Kandy-Colombo road, close to Nittambuwa, as both sides were crowded with temporary Rambutan stalls. Today, these street sales have expanded to nearly all of the main streets in Colombo, in particular, Havelock Road and Alexandra Place, popular attractions among passers-by.