The sun rises with birds chirping and in the distance, one hears the pleasant hum of women talking as they walk through the narrow passages between the lush bushes of tea. That’s how morning dawns in the 177 hectares of the Temi Tea garden in southern Sikkim. This is where the world’s finest tea begins its journey. It is the story of Temi brewed in the quaint Himalayan Kingdom when the last King of Sikkim converted 440 acres of his kingdom’s land into a tea plantation.
The tea estate has eventually grown into a centre of wellness, tourism, meditation and has become the prime source of employment for the people of the adjoining areas. The natural beauty of this tea garden makes it a coveted tourist destination. The majestic view of the Khangchendzonga peak adds its splendour.
The estate allows travellers to step into the shoes of a planter. It also allows the traveller to integrate himself with the tea harvesters. The traveller can wear many hats in a day and can also come to the factory for a guided tour. The visit to the Temi Tea factory is high on the list of most travellers. The factory itself is very well preserved and holds historical significance. Apart from witnessing the historical grandeur of this factory, visitors can actually witness how tea is made market-ready. The tea workers explain each process associated with tea manufacturing and will also give details regarding processes that were followed in the past. The tour will end with a visit to the tea testing lab where the first woman tea tester of India, Shanti Gurung explains the nuances of tea testing. After the factory visit, one can come to see the iconic old bungalow. This was the estate manager’s residence in the yesteryears. Today, it stands as a heritage building and is being transformed into a luxury resort. This bungalow also hosts the first two tea plant saplings that were planted by the King and Queen of Sikkim. Temi Tea has kept itself updated with the changing trends in the tourism sector. Adventure tourism has been integrated with leisure and ecotourism at Temi. Travellers can avail mountain biking and paragliding options. Tourists can expand their stay to include these activities. The option of treks to magnificent natural spots following secret trails is an added attraction. Similarly, visitors can undertake a cultural journey and witness different cultural exhibits and dances during their stay. They can also savour authentic Sikkimese cuisine. A visit to the Temi Tea garden gives one a unique chance to visit Buddhist shrines.