Booking.com is ‘spilling the tea’ with five destinations to celebrate International Tea Day
Ah, tea! The comforting brew that most people can’t get enough of. International Tea Day on 21st May, celebrates the cultural and economic significance of tea across the globe, highlighting just how much joy and comfort this beverage can bring.
Booking.com is marking the occasion with a round-up of five destinations for tea lovers around the world. With 44% of Indian travellers keen to try the best places for food and drink on their next trip,* International Tea Day is the perfect excuse to travel to locations naturally steeped in history and beauty.
Tea is a worldwide phenomenon and just about every country, from Argentina to Malaysia, has its own way of consuming it. From the rich flavorful tea leaves from Darjeeling to the vibrant mint leaves of Morocco, discover the exciting destinations behind the drinks.
The Darjeeling district of West Bengal is known for its plethora of tea gardens, with over 80 stretching across acres of land. Located in the foothills of the mountains, the emerald-green Darjeeling Tea Garden produces tea with such an intense aroma and spicy flavour, it’s often referred to as the ‘champagne of teas.’ When visitors aren’t admiring the majestic Khangchendzonga, the world’s third highest mountain, they can visit Buddhist monasteries and take a ride on the 140-year-old stream Darjeeling Himalayan Railway.
Where to stay: The blissful hill resort Mayfair Darjeeling, with spectacular views overlooking the valley, is a tranquil spot with easy access to the Darjeeling Tea Garden. Classic Indian rooms exude old world charm and elegance with carved wooden furnishings and colourful prints. The hotel features a spa, state-of-the-art gym, pool and tea boutique. Wake up to birdsong and spend the day exploring the stunning tea gardens.
English breakfast tea is a British staple, which has expanded over the years to include a variety of brews including decaf and gold standard. The quaint spa town of Harrogate is home to one of the UK’s most popular Yorkshire tea brands, where it blends tea leaves from Assam and East Africa to create unique combinations bursting with flavour. Take a trip to the nearby city of York and enjoy a delightful Afternoon Tea Boat Cruise along the picturesque River Ouse, where visitors will discover the city's mediaeval history. Iconic sites include York Minster, one of the largest and most beautiful Gothic cathedrals in the world.
Where to stay: The Chapel Boutique Bed and Breakfast, situated in the heart of the town, is ideally located near local sites including the Harrogate Turkish Baths, Royal Hall Theatre and Royal Pump Room Museum as well as the famous Bettys Café Tea Rooms, serving delicious afternoon teas in Harrogate since 1919. The unique grade II listed chapel conversion boasts luxe rooms with an eccentric and eclectic mix of styles. Following a day of sightseeing and tea tasting, relax on the large balcony overlooking the lush gardens.
Refreshing mint tea is the national drink of choice in Morocco. Various blends are made across the country, but the vibrant mint leaves from the scenic hilltop city of Meknes are said to be the best. A UNESCO-stamped ancient medina, meander around the old town to discover everything from specialist souks selling beautiful crafts and textiles to teahouses in secret courtyards and even the odd donkey strolling around.
Where to stay: Stay in the heart of Meknes at the impressive Riad Mama H&K. Traditionally decorated with the authentic architecture of Morocco including hand-carved wood and geometric tiles, the hotel also features a pretty outdoor terrace. Discover local dishes from tangines to seafood in all their richness and variety at the on-site restaurant or relax by the fireplace with a soothing mint tea.
Said to have the strength of coffee, the health benefits of tea and the joy of chocolate, the herbal tea Yerba Mate is Argentina’s national drink, and enjoyed for its energy-boosting qualities. The leaves are grown in the rich rainforests of the northeastern province of Misiones, famed for its red earth and papaya fields. Within Misiones lies the Iguazú National Park, home to the magical Iguazú Falls – the world’s largest waterfall – where visitors can spot bright-billed toucans and colourful butterflies.
Where to stay: Self-catering bungalows Cabañas Doralia in the city of Oberá feature a well-equipped kitchen, BBQ terrace, outdoor pool and exquisite garden views. The comfortable accommodation is located near La Ruta Del Te, an Argentinian tea house where travelers can learn from fourth generation tea producers and try Yerba Mate sweetened with agave and served with pastries for an afternoon treat.
Steeped in rich tea-making traditions, the Cameron Highlands is renowned for its impressive emerald tea estates and exquisite mountain views. The Bharat Tea Estate produces some of the world's favourite tea labels including Cameroon Valley, which takes its flavour inspiration from Sri Lanka and South India. Visitors can quench their thirst at the estate’s Tea House with a special high tea, and wander through the lush hilly terrain with moss-covered trees, rich wildlife and exotic plants.
Where to stay: Located a short drive away from the Bharat Tea Estate is Heahtitude, a kitsch vintage guest house with modern amenities. Visitors can enjoy activities around the Cameron Highlands, including hiking and cycling in the Mossy Forest, where Rafflesia – the biggest flowers in the world – can be found. Between trekking and tea culture, it’s easy to unwind in the evenings on the beautiful riverside terrace.
For those inspired to discover the destinations behind their favourite teas, Booking.com is sharing Getaway Deals for travellers to use when booking their next trip. Discounts start at 15% and are valid for stays between April 4, 2022 until September 30, 2022. In addition, Booking.com is bringing the great value of its Genius program to even more customers by giving all account holders access to the program’s Level 1 benefits, with no minimum number of previous bookings to qualify, including access to exclusive 10% discounts at hundreds of thousands of participating properties around the world. All travellers have to do is download the Booking.com app, log in and look for the Genius logo to identify associated benefits, discounts and perks.
Research commissioned by Booking.com and conducted among a sample of adults who plan to travel for business or leisure in the next 12-24 months. In total 24,055 respondents across 31 countries and territories were polled (including 501 from Argentina, 1003 from Australia, 500 from Belgium, 1001 from Brazil, 500 from Canada, 1000 from China, 1007 from Colombia, 1001 from Croatia, 508 from Denmark, 1002 from France, 1000 from Germany, 1005 from Hong Kong, 1000 from India, 502 from Israel, 1003 from Italy, 1002 from Japan, 500 from Mexico, 501 from The Netherlands, 501 from New Zealand, 500 from Peru, 1000 from Russia, 1005 from Singapore, 1002 from South Korea, 1002 from Spain, 501 from Sweden, 501 from Switzerland, 504 from Taiwan, 500 from Thailand, 1000 from the UK, 1002 from the US and 501 from Vietnam). Respondents completed an online survey in August 2021.