A Memorable Trip to Uji

Uji is a little city located in the middle of Kyoto and Nara, two of Japan’s most well known historical and social focuses. Its closeness to these two previous capitals brought about Uji’s initial advancement as a cultural centre in its own particular right. Uji is famous for its green tea. While Kozanji Temple in Kyoto is known to be the first site of tea cultivation in Japan, Uji’s tea turned out to be better known for its unrivaled quality in the 1100s.

This small town is not only famous for its tea but also for the various historical temples and tourist sites that it holds within. I am a Muslim traveler and often people question me whether why do I visit temples. My answer is always the same; there is no harm in exploring as far as your faith is strong in your heart. Read ahead and find out my 3 personal favorite things to do in this little Japanese city.

 

Mimurotoji Temple

Mimurotoji (三室戸寺) is a shrine in the northern slopes of Uji City, established around 1200 years back. It is also called the “flower temple”, as its wide grounds offer huge greenhouses of a variety of regular blossoms. Guests can see cherry blooms here ahead of April, azalea around May, hydrangea in June, lotuses around July and August, and harvest time hues around late November. Within the temple regions are a wonderful, three layered vermilion pagoda, an Amida Buddha lobby, and a statue of Ukajin, a nearby divinity with the head of an old man and the body of a snake. Patting on the statue of Ukajin brings fortune and good fate according to locals.

Mimurotoji - youcojapan

 

Uji River

The Uji River moves through town, separating Uji into two sections. Its noticeable position shapes the lovely scene of the town. River cruises and fishing are well known summer exercises for tourists. The same water crafts are regularly utilized for both travels as a part of the day and fishing around sunset. Fishing happens at the Uji River from around mid June to late September. Tickets can be obtained at the venue for around 2000 yen. Boarding begins at around 18:30, and the cruise ride keeps going roughly an hour. Lining the riverbank are numerous teahouses and eateries showcasing Uji’s famous tea and tea themed dishes. Guests can try tea seasoned soba noodles; green tea dessert and other prominent Uji tea treats while enjoy the scenic beauty.

 Uji River - youcojapan

 

Uji Tea

Green tea is currently universal in Japan, however when it initially came  from China in the 700s, the beverage was restricted only to a modest bunch of clerics and aristocrats. A couple of hundred years, amid the Kamakura Period, green tea leaves imported from China and developed in Uji became prominent among the nobility. Tea drinking later became well known among the masses, and Uji earned a reputation for magnificent tea cultivation as one of the first places to take part in tea growing.

Today, Uji’s tea is still respected to be of superior quality. There are a variety of ways whereby one can enjoy Uji’s tea and tea culture. Most eateries and stores around the local area offer tea in somehow unique ways. Prominent on the menus of eateries are matcha flavored soba noodles, ice-cream and other unique desserts.

Uji Tea - youcojapan