Tea Estates in Rwanda Tourists can Visit
Tea Estates in Rwanda Tourists can Visit : Tea was first introduced to Rwanda in 1952 and is now one of the country’s most important exports. The fertile volcanic soil and moderate temperature provide ideal growth conditions for tea.
Tea is grown on huge estates for the most part, with a little contribution from tea cooperatives and independent producers. Tea plantations blanket the undulating hills, their lush green a stark contrast to the azure skies, gravel roads, and sunshine.
A dozen tea factories dot the land, processing tea leaves. A handful is available to the public, allowing visitors to learn how tea is collected and processed, as well as taste the finished product.
Tea plantation excursions are available across Rwanda, with the most popular being near Nyungwe National Park – Gisoyu and Gisakura.
Gisovu Tea Estate
The Gisovu Tea Estate, tucked away at the extreme northern border of Nyungwe National Park, is right up against the primeval Nyungwe forest, where the careful rows of tea form a stark contrast with the untamed forest greens immediately behind them.
Gisovu Estate is located in Rwanda’s western province, 7500 feet above sea level, and is closest to the Nyungwe Forest. In addition, the Nyungwe Forest is the source of the Nile River. Gisovu’s unique features are due to its height, soil types, temperatures, and humidity. It was named the Best Tea in Africa in 2012 during an African Tea Convention held in Kenya, and the Estate currently produces around 2300 tonnes of tea each year.
Gisovu Estate encompasses a range of altitudes, the highest being 8100ft above sea level, making them some of the world’s highest cultivated teas. Gisovu Tea is also Rainforest Alliance certified and follows a pesticide-free farming standard.
After a tour of the grounds and the cupping ritual, visitors with time to spare may unwind here, mountain bike around the grounds, or simply soak up the peace over never-ending cups of the world’s best tea.
Gisakura Tea Estate
The Gisakura Tea Estate, which hugs the undulating hills on the western outskirts of Nyungwe Forest National Park, is one of Rwanda‘s most renowned and surely one of its most beautiful tea estates. Tours and tastings are easily arranged, and while there is presently no lodging on the estate, there are guesthouses nearby.
The tea plantations are vast and managed appropriately by the local people who have improvised unique methods so as to produce quality tea to all. Visit and take a cup so as to share with your families as well as friends back home.
Depending on when you go, you will see what you want. For example, those who go on a Sunday will not be able to see the farmers or participate in any activities because they have gone home to rest, whereas those who go from Monday to Saturday will be able to see the farmers working hard to ensure that they harvest quality tea. You will see them select and gather the tea in the baskets, which is a one-of-a-kind experience, and we recommend that you bring a decent camera with you to snap wonderful photographs.
Keep an eye out for the Colobus monkeys that reside in a piece of woodland within the plantation. Rwanda has a population of over 12 million people and is noted for its lush, hilly scenery. Many people’s only knowledge of Rwanda is the film Gorillas in the Mist, starring Sigourney Weaver, and the heinous genocide that occurred there in 1994.
Living and farming in Rwanda is difficult-90 percent of the population is engaged mostly in subsistence agriculture. Despite the fact that the small-holder model works well for coffee and tea production, farm sizes are shrinking. The majority of farms in Rwanda are less than one hectare in size, approximately 2.74 acres.
Book a tour to Gisakura Tea Estate or Gisovu Tea Plantation in Rwanda using a trusted tour operator company like Explore Rwanda Tours and also get an opportunity to see some of the amazing primates in Nyungwe forest national park.