For some people, when they think of Sri Lanka they immediately think of beautiful beaches, but I think of luscious green hills with clouds rolling in over the acres upon acres of tea plantations with their distinctive rows of tea bushes. The drive from Kandy to Ella along the high roads through the hill country was just how I had imagined it and absolutely stunning. However, the route was along slow, winding roads through the tea plantations so it was great to stop at the Glenloch Tea Factory just outside Nuwara Eliya to break up the journey.
Our driver had arranged our visit so when we arrived we were greeted by Priya who gave us a free tour of the working tea factory. It was amazing to see the processes and machines used for the different stages of what is actually quite a complex process to get the different grades of black, green, and white tea that we drink.
Priya also gave us a tour of the plantation and introduced us to one of their tea pluckers who taught us how to pick the tea leaves and let us have a go. It’s amazing how quickly they can spot the right leaves and pluck them. I don’t think I’d last long as a tea plucker – I was really slow!
After our tour we were able to try some of the different tea grades, including their prized “Golden Flush” tea which they claim could be the best tea in the world – well I can’t possibly comment on that, but it was pretty good! It was a beautiful golden colour and had a refreshing and subtle flavour. Priya was keen for us to look around the shop, but we wanted to look anyway and it’s understandable considering that the tour of the factory was free. We bought some Golden Flush to take home.
It was great to see a working tea factory and meet the people behind the scenes producing a product that I consume every day. Priya was so friendly and welcoming which made the whole experience even better!