With its sprawling tea plantation surrounded by lush greenery and pristine rainforests in the cool mountain air, the Sabah Tea Garden beckons you to indulge in its beautiful surroundings, away from the hustle and bustle of the city life. Sabah Tea is the only certified organic tea farm in Borneo and one of the few in the world. The tea leaves from its 2,480 hectare plantation are 100% pesticide free. We were informed by our guide that only 1,200 acres of the plantation land is used for tea cultivation; the rest, or approximately 5,000 acres, is still very much covered with rainforest. It provides home and food for insects that would otherwise attack the tea plants. Hence, no artificial colouring or flavouring is added into the tea and it is 100% pesticide free. A visit to the tea factory demonstrates the many steps involved in creating the perfect tea including how the tea is collected, processed and the final packaging process. Here at Sabah Tea Garden they harvest 2000 kg leaf daily that goes into production and two days later results in the finished end product - 400 kg tea.Then a demonstration is done to show you the difference of low quality and high quality teas - needless to say we will all be testing our tea when we get home!!! Did you know an experienced tea picker can collect about 32 Kg of tea in a day, which is enough to make 14,000 cups of tea!
"Tea drinkers take a break; coffee drinkers need a break."
In addition to seeing how tea is produced we had the most magnificent views of Mt Kinabalu through the #sabahframe as well as having time to explore the surrounding gardens. Yes, a lot of it is kitsch but we had great fun explring the world of tea in Borneo.
Then it was a LONG drive past acres and acres of palm plantations to the tiny village of Bilit located along the Kinabatangan River. We arrived in the tiny village to be ushered to an awaiting boat to take us to our accommodation - Bilit Adventure Lodge.