Kenya

Kiambethu Tea Farm

There’s hardly a better way to spend a Saturday in Nairobi than touring a 100-year-old tea farm in Limuru. In a city with very few green spaces, Kiambethu tea farm is literally a breath of fresh air — within forty-five minutes you can be away from the hustle and bustle of Nairobi gazing upon a rolling, green sea of tea leaves.

A sea of tea leaves in Limuru, Kenya
A sea of tea leaves in Limuru, Kenya

As if an escape from a loud, dirty city wasn’t motivation enough, the excursion is educational and they even cook you lunch!

Did You Know?

After a few hours at the tea farm you will have learned everything you never knew you wanted to know about tea! I’ve been a few times, so I have a few pieces of wisdom to impart:

  • Different kinds of tea come from different leaves — the smaller, softer, less-mature leaves are for white tea, while larger leaves are for black and green tea. The process for creating black tea requires the leaves to be oxidized.
  • Kenya is the largest exporter of tea in the world. China and India of course produce more, but they also have more tea drinkers domestically.
  • Mombasa is home to the largest tea auction in the world, and tea from as far as Zimbabwe and South Africa is sent there for the the weekly auction (which happens on Tuesday).
  • Good tea looks very black, without sticks, and the rating will be PF1 (pekoe fanning 1). If you’re buying tea in a shop in Kenya look for Safari or Kericho Gold brands.

Fun for the Whole Family

Forget the big five, at Kiambethu you can see Colobus monkeys, ducks, weiner dogs, and Chameleons!

The farm house (with Colobus monkeys!)
The farm house (with Colobus monkeys!)

I have nothing but positive things to say about the tea farm — it’s beautiful, educational, and relaxing. Consider this my ringing endorsement for spending a few hours at Kiambethu. :)

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