TATA Tea Museum
|The Tata Tea Museum in the Nallathanni Estate tells the eventful story of Munnar; its transformation from an uninhabited stretch of forest land to a plantation town. The highlights of the museum include old machineries used for tea processing, photographs and some other curious displays that throw light on the efforts of some adventurous planters who dared to conquer the wild with minimal equipment and little resource.
Rotorvane, an old tea roller used in the CTC type tea processing, would be a wonder for even those associated with modern tea industry. There is a CTC tea manufacturing unit in the museum where visitors can get to now the old method of tea processing. However, the real treat here would be the tea tasting unit where one can savour a variety of flavours.
And if you think that the displays are confined to just tea-making, you’re wrong. Like the ‘Pelton Wheel’, used at a power generation plant set up at the Kanniamallay Estate in 1920s, a variety of exhibits show the infrastructure development activities which have happened in Munnar in its journey towards becoming a major tea producing centre in the country.
Another proud display of the museum is a large sundial made in 1913. Placed on a granite block, the sundial was made by Art Industrial School, Nazareth, Tamil Nadu.
There is also a section featuring classic furniture belonging to colonial bungalows. The exhibits include wooden chairs, tables, decorative displays, magneto phone, iron ovens and a wooden bath tub. Office furniture of tea estates like typewriters, manual calculators and an EPABX dating from 1909 are also exhibited.
A burial urn discovered from the Periakanal tea estate in Munnar is also displayed at the museum. The urn dates back to second century BC.
The museum is open from 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. on all days. Travellers are advised to contact the museum authorities prior to the visit.
Tata Tea Museum
Munnar, Idukki District