China Tea Trip, Anyone ?

We just received a shout out from Kent at the Tian He Healing Arts in Australia  ( ) announcing an upcoming tea trip to China that he is leading. This trip sounds fantastic and we would love to go, but we have a full plate this spring with the April publication of our new tea book The Tea Enthusiast’s Handbook: A Guide to the World’s Best Teas and our own tea sourcing trip to Asia.

So, for any of you with money to burn and no where to go, here’s your opportunity. We have visited the places that Kent will take you to, and can honestly say that this trip sounds very well thought out and quite extensive. Read on for more details. We have never met Kent, but he seems like an earnest guy and you can check out his website.

Tian He Tea Tour
Sydney-Shanghai-Jiu Hua- Mt-Wu Yi- Mt-Hangzhou-Shanghai-Sydney
Tour date: 16 April to 29 April, 2010


Day-by-Day Itinerary
Day 1: Sydney to Shanghai Arrive in Shanghai, the biggest city of China, late in the evening of the first day. Rest up!

Day 2: Shanghai to Jiu Hua Mountain
Travel to An Hui Province, homeland of some of the most famous Chinese green
tea. Jiu Hua Mountain, the most famous Buddhist sacred mountain in south China, is where Dawei and Armand have their mountain retreat

Day 3: Jiu Hua Mountain
Enjoy the peaceful life at Dawei’s temple pick, prepare and taste the new harvest 2010 tea.

Day 4: Jiu Hua Mountain
Climb and walk on top of Jiu Hua Range (more than 1000 meters high) to visit some of the great Buddhist temples and study Jiu Hua Buddha tea.

Day 5: Jiu Hua Mountain and Taiping Lake
To study Tai Ping Hou Kui, one of the ten best tea’s in China. The scenery of this area is amazing and exhilarating!

Day 6: Jiu Hua Mountain
Yellow Mountain day trip – The most famous Chinese mountain! A must see for all the visitors to China. The Yellow Mt Mao Feng, is the third most famous tea in China.

Day 7: Jiu Hua Mountain
Tea ceremony, Chinese culture lecture and Buddhist meditation.

Day 8: Jiu Hua Mountain to Wu Yi Shan
Travel to Wu Yi mountain to study Da Hong Pao, the most famous rock oolong in China. We will take you to see Da Hong Pao’s mother bush, which is over 350 years old in a special park. We’ll tour Wu Yi Mountain, which is home to China’s rock oolongs.

Day 9: Meet Tea Master (Traditional Rock Oolong Tea)
From his garden to his workshop, Master will show you the entire process of picking and producing traditional rock oolong teas. He will teach how different bushes, soils, roasting techniques, and grades all yield different flavors of oolong. Come thirsty…we’ll taste a lot of tea today!

Day 10: Daytrip to Tong Mu Village (Lapsang Souchong Black Tea)
We’ll take a break from oolongs to visit Tong Mu Village, nestled in the Tong Mu Natural Preserve, which is the home of Lapsang Souchong. You’ll meet the family who has been responsible for authentic Lapsang Souchong for many generations, and see a 100-year-old tea factory constructed entirely of wood. You’ll learn why this tea is smokey and have an opportunity to witness the whole process of making this special tea, starting with the famous black tea bush, the “Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong,” in family’s wild tea garden.

Day 11: Tour Wu Yi Shan
Today we’ll relax and enjoy some of the culture around Wu Yi Mountain. We’ll visit the temple where people believe that oolong tea was invented, and ride in a bamboo boat to enjoy the gorgeous scenery.
On the boat, you’ll have a chance to absorb the scenery and learn why this particular area is so well suited for oolong tea. Then we’ll visit an ancient kiln where the original Mo Cha tea bowls were produced. Mo Cha is a powdered green tea popular during the Tang and Song Dynasties, when it was drunk in a bowl. After a visit to a local teahouse, you will be shown how to relax, Chinese-style, and have a chance to shop for local products.

Day 12: Wu Yi Shan to Hangzhou
Leave Wu Yi Mountain and make a move to Hangzhou, a beautiful city that’s popular with Chinese and foreign tourists alike. You’ll stay in a hotel near West Lake. You’ll visit our widely respected Shi Feng Long Jing master, and witness the tea harvest at his gardens. Then it’s off to the Hangzhou Tea Museum to meet a famous tea master from the International Tea Culture Institute..

Tian He Tea Tour
Sydney-Shanghai-Jiu Hua- Mt-Wu Yi- Mt-Hangzhou-Shanghai-Sydney

Tour date: 16 April to 29 April, 2010 (exact dates subject to change) Duration:14 days Tour cost: $ 5180 (this price may change up or down depending on airfares) Single room supplement: $ 600 Minimum deposit: $ 1500 (refundable until 10 days prior to departure)

Tour cost includes: Roundtrip airfare from Sydney to China, all local travel, all meals, all hotels, all entry fees to events/museums

Tour cost does not include : Australian travel to and from Sydney, visas, tips.

Options: Shanghai – Beijing-Tianjin-Beijing – Sydney 6 days, 5 nights in Beijing Cost: $1200
Our tour will focus on traditional, handmade Chinese green tea and some of China’s best oolong tea. We will guide you through two green tea provinces – Zhejiang and Anhui – which are home to teas like Jiuhua Buddha tea, Long Jing, Liu An Gua Pian, Tai Ping Hou Kui, Huang Shan Mao Feng, and many other favorite green teas. We will also guide you through Fujian province, home to Wu Yi Shan rock oolong tea.

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