Japanese gardens are usually associated with houses and well elaborate paths that lead to the Japanese tea shop.The garden is separated from worldly lifestyles and is usually private.When walking across the tea garden, you experience a unique and refreshing atmosphere.
Walking through the garden requires one to concentrate on the ground which is placed with stepping stones raised above the ground level.The tea garden is mostly evergreen throughout the year.
Tea was first grown in Japan in the early 8th century and was mainly consumed for medicinal purposes. Japanese tea ceremony is based on the contents of a book written centuries ago by Chinese Buddhist priests.Chinese Buddhist priests in their book described what now forms the basis of the Japanese tea ceremony. Tea was used by priests and monks to assist them in practice meditation.The tea gardens signify a particular spiritual and religious attachment for the Japanese people as well as the visitors.There are golden rules made to make sure that the tea gardens always appear natural and not as artificial.
Tea was rarely found in Japan in the Heian period, and this created a the treasured feeling of Japanese on tea and the drinking of tea. People would come together during the tea ceremony to celebrate drinking the scarce commodity.
The tea ceremony may last up to four hours.Carefully Planned activities are conducted during the tea ceremony. Before the tea ceremony begins, the guests may sometimes be served with light meals. The Japanese tradition involves people serving and receiving tea and all the participants share tea using the same bowl.
During the ceremony, two types of teas are served namely: the Matcha and the Sencha. The Matcha is a thick, milky green traditional tea with a bitter taste while the Sencha is the green tea that is often drunk during common events.
The tea experts in Japanese tea shops make the tea by the use of a powdered Matcha and bamboo whisk and the tea served in bowls.Several rules and paraphernalia are applied in the tea drinking including the involvement of bowls, tea-box and the carrying of bags.
Japanese teas are prepared traditionally and served on bowls which are of different sizes, shapes and thickness depending on the unique characteristics of the tea. Taller tea bowls and thick walls are mostly used for casual tea and are easier to hold. Matcha and Sencha which are high-grade aromatic teas are served using small half-circled bowls.Low-grade Japanese tea types are served using big wide bowls.
The green tea is the most popular tea used in Japan.The manufacture of green tea is well identified with Japanese tea companies with the tea being used as medicine.Green tea is processed from camellia sinensis leaves but there are also different varieties.