Tea picking in the birthplace of Matcha

My relatives recently went on tea picking / hiking experience via Airbnb in the countryside of Kyoto, Wazuka. That area has been producing tea for over 1000 years which is around the same time as the introduction of tea to Japan itself. You’d often hear about how the tea culture originated in Uji, Kyoto but I didn’t know that 40% of the famous Uji-cha (cha means tea in Japanese) is made in Wazuka.

Photos from the tour by Airbnb

As many of the crafts in Japan, farming as an industry is facing many challenges. It is hard for many of them to keep themselves financially sustainable and to find successors. You’ll find many farmers to be over 60+ years old still doing physically demanding tasks every day. Daiki Tanaka, who is hosting the Airbnb experience has moved to Wazuka a few years ago and is putting all of his energy into revitalizing the community. His main business is d:matcha where farms tea (non-organic and organic) and produces many types of teas. He also recently opened a retail space / cafe that has gotten excellent rating on Tripadvisor.

Photos from the farm by d:matcha

Photos from the farm by d:matcha

Photos from the farm by d:matcha

Did you know that you can make all kinds of tea ranging from green to black tea from the same tea leaves? On their website they explain that and many more interesting things about what tea is made of. They also tell their own story, introduce the region, the farm and the team and have a lot more wonderful content on their website. Check it out for yourself!