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Kolukkumalai

Travel towards Chinnakanal area and proceed a few more kilometers, you reach Kolukkumalai, located just across border in Tamil Nadu. The Tea Estate of the same name located here is the most famous landmark. Kolukkumalai Tea Estate is the world's highest located tea estate, at more than 7,500ft. To reach the tea estate, you've to trek up or take a jeep till the top of a mountain and then a descent to reach it. The view from here is exquisite – on a clear night, you can even spot Kodaikanal on the other side of the hills.

The tea factory was built by the British, about 80 years ago. Orthodox tea-making, which uses of the seven-step process – includes withering, rolling, sieving, fermenting, drying, fiber extraction and grading – is in practice here. The manager will arrange for a factory tour for visitors. You can see and learn how tea is processed here.

Kolukkumalai is connected via jeeps and bikes. You'll have to hire one from Chinnakanal for about R 650 – Rs 700. Or you can trek up if you're up to it. The estate was the Southern Tea Competition winner of the Golden Leaf India Awards 2005.