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Which is the best tea factory in Munnar for visitors

The moment you reach the outskirts of Munnar, you start to see the sprawling tea plantations all over the place. It looks like waves and waves of tea trees pruned to the waist height, look it a green carpet. When you are in tea country, it is an obvious choice to see how tea is manufactured from these leaves. And this happens when you visit a tea factory. The Chai an integral part of many cultures and cuisines.

Tea Museum Munnar
Tea Museum Munnar

If you ask us about the best tea factory in Munnar, it would be very much a subjective answer, but we have recommendations. Every random kerala itinerary will have this term - "Tea Museum visit in Munnar". The Tea Museum is owned and operated by the Tata Global Beverages and has a miniature tea factory inside it and at the exit there is a tea leaves and powder selling outlet. Its obvious if someone tends to buy some tea trying to believe that you are buying tea just form its source. But we believe that Tea Museum is much more important for another reason, they have a detailed audio visual show at the entrance which explains about the history of tea in the Munnar. How the European planters arrived here and eventually planted tea after coffee, and it become such a large industry here.


Lockhart tea factory Munnar
Lockhart tea factory, Devikulam Munnar

But, you need to go to a different place if you really want to experience a tea factory itself. before getting into that lets explain about the two prominent processes of tea manufacturing. The Orthodox and CTC (Crush Tear and Curl) method. The orthodox method produces a wider range of teas with diverse flavors and appearances, while the CTC method is geared toward the production of strong, quick-brewing black teas, often used in tea bags and for making chai. The tea museum is a miniature of the CTC model of making tea and there is another factory called the Lockhart tea factory some 10 kilometers away from Munnar, which manufacturers tea in the orthodox method.


Lockhart tea factory tour - best tea factory for visitors
Lockhart tea factory tour - best tea factory for visitors

While tea museum is right in the town, it naturally becomes busy and crowded, at the same time Lockhart tea factory, owned by the Harrisons Malayalam group is a bit away from the city, and very few venture out there. The factory offers guided tours where you can observe how tea leaves are processed and transformed into the tea we enjoy. You can see withering, rolling, fermenting, drying, and sorting processes. Undoubtedly, the Lockhart tea factory offers a better experience, and you will definitely feel a sense of value. They also have an outlet there, but that is quite common, tea is available everywhere in Munnar.


Kolukkumalai tea factory
Kolukkumalai tea factory

But the real place to visit if you are damn serious about tea is the Kolukkumalai tea factory at the Kolukkumalai tea estate. The factory is located in Tamil Nadu, but you can reach there only via Kerala. You will have to drive uphill an off road track for an hour to reach there. The place is an organic tea factory and is the highest orthodox tea factory in the world. They still use the machinery brought from England, you can see "Britannia" engraved in the rolling units. They also have guided tours, and produces limited quantity of tea. They still pack manually, you can understand the volume they produce.


We mostly recommend the Lockhart Tea Factory from Harrisons Malayalam Plantations. This 90 year old factory is a charming little factory following the orthodox method of tea manufacturing, and the guided tour is worth it. This is the place where we take our guests during our Kerala tours - Check out five days Kerala itinerary with pricing to have a look at what all you can do in Munnar.




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