Culinary Getaway in Tweed, Australia 2014: Tropical Fruit World

After breakfast at Kettles On Cafe, we were ready to begin exploring Tweed. Our first stop was Tropical Fruit World, a working farm that cultivates more than 500 species of exotic fruits. The subtropical climate and rich volcanic soils here makes the Tweed Valley (which is a volcanic caldera) an ideal location for growing an extensive range of subtropical fruits and nuts.

Tropical Fruit World entrance

Tropical Fruit World

Visitors to Tropical Fruit World can buy tickets for a 2.5 hour fully guided tour which includes fruit tasting, plantation safari tour, boat cruise, fauna park, island recreation, and miniature train ride. There’s also free access to a fruit market, gift shop, and cafe.

Map of Tropical Fruit World

At the entrance of Tropical Fruit World

Because of insufficient time, we did not experience the full tour. But we did get to enjoy the fruit tasting and plantation safari!

Fruit tasting platter

Colorful fruit platter!

We went wild when these huge fruit platters appeared on our table! Many of these fruits looked familiar, but we’ve never seen or heard of their names before.

One of them is “rollinia“, which looks and tastes like a cross between custard apple and soursop. Another one looks like mangosteen, but it’s called “caimito” or “star apple“.

Black Sapote a.k.a. "Chocolate Pudding" fruit

Black Sapote a.k.a. “Chocolate Pudding” fruit

Then there’s this soft, creamy fruit called “black sapote” that tastes like a mild chocolate pudding. It tastes even nicer with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream!

Aymon -- manager of Tropical Fruit World -- explaining to us the different fruits.

Aymon Gow — manager of Tropical Fruit World — explaining to us the different fruits.

With so many interesting and delicious fruits to sample, it was a truly an eye-opening and fun experience!

Beginning on our plantation safari tour.

Beginning on our plantation safari tour.

After sampling the fruits, we were taken on a plantation safari to see the farm. Of course, we only saw parts of it; the entire 65-hectare commercial farm would be too big for us to cover.

Driving along one of the paths.

Driving along one of the paths.

Lookout point.

Lookout point.

Giant avocados.

Giant avocados.

Along the way, we saw exotic fruits like giant avocados

Tasting yellow mangosteen.

Aymon picks and cuts a yellow mangosteen for us to sample.

yellow mangosteens

The traditional crank to open a macadamia nut.

The traditional crank to open a macadamia nut.

…and macadamia nut trees!

It's not that easy as it looks!

It’s not that easy as it looks!

We even tried cracking open fresh macadamia nuts with a traditional crank. It’s not as easy as it seems!

Sampling fresh macadamia nuts!

Sampling fresh macadamia nuts!

Actually fresh macadamia nuts taste pretty good on their own though they’ve not been roasted.

Bergamot orange tree.

Bergamot orange tree.

We also saw various varieties of citrus trees, one of which was bergamot orange tree. This is the citrus that gives Earl Grey tea its distinctive scent.

Giant chikus!

Giant chikus!

We have chiku or “sapodilla” fruit in Singapore and Malaysia, but never have I seen any that are so HUGE!

Yellow dragonfruit field.

Yellow dragonfruit trees.

Yellow dragonfruit a.k.a. yellow pitaya.

Sampling freshly-picked pomelo!

Sampling freshly-picked pomelo!

We also sampled pomelo. So fresh and juicy! Pomelos are very rich in Vitamin C and are beneficial for our digestive system.

Blending our choice of fruit ice cream.

Blending our choice of fruit ice cream.

After our plantation safari tour, we went back to the cafe for a refreshing break. There’s a “design-it-yourself” ice cream bar, where you can pick your choice of fruits (frozen) and have them blended with rich vanilla ice cream.

Black Sapote ice cream (left) and red dragonfruit ice cream.

Black Sapote ice cream (left) and red dragonfruit ice cream.

Fresh fruit ice creams — so yummy!

Gift shop.

Gift shop.

Adjacent to the Plantation Cafe is a large Gift Market.

Wide variety of stuff.

Wide variety of stuff.

There’s a wide selection of jams, sauces, candies, chocolates, skincare, and toys to choose from.

Fruit butters.

Mango butter for you?

The Tropical Passion range of jams, pickles, sauces and salsas are made from real farm fruits.

Fresh fruit market.

Fresh fruit market.

Don’t forget to check out the fresh Fruit Market next to the entrance.

Mangosteen.

Yellow dragonfruit and star apple (caimito) for sale.

There’s a good variety of seasonal fruits for sale, freshly picked from the orchards of Tropical Fruit World.

The next time I come to Tweed with my family, I’m definitely bringing my kids to Tropical Fruit World. They can see and touch fruits from all over the world, and get to sample them as well. This will be a fun and educational experience for all ages, not just young children.

Tropical Fruit World is only about a 15-minute drive from Gold Coast Airport.

Tropical Fruit World
29 Duranbah Rd
Duranbah NSW 2487
Australia
Tel: +61 2 6677 7222
URL: http://www.tropicalfruitworld.com.au/

Open daily except Christmas Day: 10am to 4pm (Qld time)

This two-day culinary trip to Tweed, Australia was made possible by Scoot, Destination Tweed, and Aria Events & Entertainment.

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