The Scottish have their whisky. The French have their wines. The Swiss have their chocolate. So the question begged to be asked: what did the Nepali have? For Nepal Tea Collective, the answer was obvious. It was the teas. So from 2023, we are bringing to our audience a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to indulge in a brewing experience like no other. A tea tour amidst the Himalayan foothills gardens that is designed to take your breath away and bring it back with delicious flavorful handmade brews.
Tea has long been a beloved beverage in Nepal. It is an essential part of Nepali people’s livelihood. But the true beauty of Nepali teas can be witnessed and explored in its tea capital Ilam and other little-known parts of eastern Nepal, amidst the growing tea community. Ilam, a small but beautiful district in Nepal, is well-known for its stunning landscapes and delicious tea. Nepal is one of the few countries in the world where tea is grown at 3,000 – 7,000 feet above sea level. The cool, misty climate and fertile soil in the hilly-mountainous regions of Nepal provide the perfect conditions for the cultivation of premium-quality tea.
Tea is not just a commodity for the people of Nepal but also a way of life. We want to share this “way of life” with the world and this is why we have reworked our tea tours and made them more immersive! Forbes called our tea tours an excellent opportunity to become a tea farmer (for a day, but hey if it calls to you, you’re more than welcome to join our garden!)
How did we redesign our Immersive Tea tours?
Nepal Tea Collective launched tea tours in 2018 and was able to take a total of four groups to Nepal before the Covid-19 pandemic put a halt to it. And although it was hard having to put a pause on bringing our consumers closer to Nepal, we used that time to revitalize the entire tour plan and structure to hit home the specialty of Nepali tea culture.
Taking inspiration from wine tours and whiskey tours, we wanted to emulate the luxury of loose leaf teas. The care that goes to produce a single leaf of tea is a great journey to witness specifically for tea lovers. With curious tea lovers in mind, we use this tea tour as a way to introduce the Nepali experience.
With our immersive tea tours, we invite you to come closer to the Nepali tea gardens and taste teas like never before. Guided by the founding team of Nepal Tea Collective, you’ll be home nestled amidst the rolling hills and lush green tea gardens. Ilam, the tea capital of Nepal, offers a peaceful and serene retreat for those seeking a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
The tea tour is a 10 days long trip fully customizable to make the tea lover in you happy. A standard itinerary can be found here and includes exploring the capital city of Nepal, smallholder tea gardens of Ilam, tea plucking, tea tasting with the producer in their garden, and experiencing a day in the life of Nepali tea farmers. In addition to touring the tea estates, you can also indulge in a variety of tea-themed activities. From tastings and pairings to cooking classes and workshops, there's something for every tea lover to enjoy. But the fun doesn't stop there! Nepal is also home to a number of charming tea houses and cafes, where you can relax and unwind with a steaming cup of tea while taking in the breathtaking views of the mountains.
What will you be doing during the tea tours?
Together with the founding members of Nepal Tea Collective, you’ll discover the beauty of Nepal. You see here we believe tea can be experienced in multitudes.
We begin with getting to know Nepal through its people, its customs and its belief system. Before you experience the mesmerizing gardens, we take you through the legion of moments that make Nepal so beautiful. It is in the smiles exchanged and conversations shared that you get to feel the layers of flavors in everything. Each trip is customized to your needs and preferences so no one trip will be the same. But the general structure of the tour will look like this:
Kathmandu will be your very first stop! After checking you into a home away from home, we will spend the first few days acclimatizing to the Nepali wonders. We will visit local treasures, meet interesting people and eat and drink amazing delicious meals and teas!
Exploring eastern Nepal
After we’re done amazing you with Kathmandu, we’ll aboard a flight to Eastern Nepal. There we begin the true tea journey visiting smallholder farms, hearing their stories and meeting the tea connoisseurs of Nepal.
Experiencing the tea culture and its social impacts
Then, we’ll get our hands dirty. Enough of getting smitten by the gardens from afar. We’ll be in the middle of it all plucking, withering, processing the teas alongside the tea makers themselves.
Making your own batch of tea
Yes, you read that right. YOU’LL BE MAKING YOUR OWN TEA! Guided by professionals and supported by Nepal Tea Collective team, you get to make as much tea as you’d like, drink as much tea as you’d like and take back as much tea as you’d like. We recommend you start thinking about a cool snazzy name for your own brand of tea!
Reflecting and unwinding
After days worth of tea experiences, we’ll come back to Kathmandu to unwind. After all, what are experiences lived if they aren’t reflected and sat on. With your process of unwinding, we’ll sit back, relax and get you ready with loads of teas and memories and both.
Intrigued? Get the inside scoop right here.
Why are we doing these tea tours?
Nepal Tea Collective has been established on the foundation that Nepali teas are worth global recognition and celebration. The founders knew how hard every Nepali tea producer worked to produce each kilogram of tea and wanted the whole world to appreciate their labor of love.
With these tours, we want the tea-loving world to come to Nepal to experience the love themselves. For the last six years, we’ve been trying to bring Nepali tea makers to the forefront of the global tea industry. As we’ve built our audience, we’ve tried to bridge the gap between our consumers and our producers by sharing their stories and inviting them to virtual tea tasting experience. With these immersive tea tours, we want to give tea lovers a tea experience like no other.
Tours in 2023
After a two-year-long halt, we are revving up for a fantastic 2023. We have a total of seven cohorts between April and June, the most productive months in tea gardens. And we’ve already fully booked two cohorts and have a few spots left in the remaining ones. Fill out this form (takes less than 1.5 minutes) to receive more information on these tours for now or in the future.
Not ready to travel yet? Why not try some award-winning teas from the region then?