Thursday, October 02, 2008

Places of Interest in Sabah: Sabah Tea Garden, Nalapak, Ranau

Sabah Tea Garden (i.e., "Ladang") at Nalapak, Ranau

The reception and restaurant area

The entrance to the restaurant with the famous "Sabah Tea" signboard

The dining area - not too grand to say the least - much improvement
needed especially the service as well as the dishes

The garden area, which has some memorable scenery

The view of Mount Kinabalu from the garden area, with tea plants spiralling below

One of the accommodations/"chalets", which is a bit
rundown and not up to tourist's standard

With its sprawling tea plantation surrounded by 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. A mere 2-hour drive from the city of Kota Kinabalu, the Sabah Tea Garden boasts a beautiful backdrop, Mount Kinabalu.

Sabah Tea is the only organic tea farm in Borneo and one of the few in the world. A trip to the tea garden is both educational and fun, one where visitors can enjoy a variety of recreational activities such as obstacle-crossing in the Sapaon Recreational Area, trekking along the trails to the peak of Kamunsu Hill or embarking on a night walk to check out the unique insect life. Highly recommended is the 2-day 1-night Sabah Tea Adventure package, which incorporates a tea factory and plantation tour, a course on basic jungle survival skills, understanding rivers and how to safely get across them and obstacle training. This package has been awarded the Best Tour Programme for Educational Tourism at the Malaysia Tourism Awards in Kuala Lumpur.

Visitors can opt to stay in a range of accommodation, be it a traditional long house, a cosy bungalow or-those who wish to sleep under the stars, a campsite. Other facilities include a conference room, restaurant, souvenir shop, a soccer field and tennis court. A stone's throw away from the garden are various places of interests, including the historical Kundasang War Memorial , Kinabalu Park and rejuvenating Poring Hot Spring . Ask the friendly staff for directions and they will be more than glad to help you out. Be it for business or pleasure, the Sabah Tea Garden awaits you with unforgettable experiences and adventures. A friendly reminder: No trip to the Sabah Tea Garden would be complete without a taste of Sabah's finest tea!

* A variety of tour packages are available. Contact Sabah Tea Garden for more details.

Location
KM17, Jalan Ranau/Sandakan, Kg. Nalapak,89309, Ranau

Getting There
If you are not joining a tour group, take a bus from the Terminal Bas Bandaraya-Utara (City Bus Terminal-North) for around RM15.00 per person (the bus stops at Ranau town). You can also take a taxi from the station near Merdeka Field for approximately RM160 per taxi. Fares may range around RM300 if departing from your hotel. Note that all fares cited are one way.

Opening hours
Daily 7am - 5pm
Closed on selected Public Holidays
*The best time to visit is between 8am to 12noon.

Admission fee
RM5.00 for a guided tour of the tea factory
RM20.00 for a guided tour + lunch
No admission fees applicable for entrance only.

Contact
Telephone: +6088 440882
Fax: +6088 423448
Email: info@sabahtea.net
Website: www.sabahtea.net

Source: Sabah Tourism

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ED NOTE: The accommodation at Sabah Tea Garden is unfortunately not really up to standard at the point of writing. It would be good if the Management of the Sabah Tea Garden can enhance/upgrade the accommodation as well as ensure that all the facilities are up to mark considering the rates that they charged. Also note that part of the infamous Sandakan-Ranau Death March trial can be found inside the area, which is an added attraction. The Mountain Bike Race track is also within the vicinity.

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