Tea ceremonies in Japan continue to attract tourists from all over the world to participate in one. Tourists want to experience the traditional ritual of Japanese tea ceremonies, but more places are starting to lose the traditional value of its tea ceremonies.
It can be difficult to experience a real traditional Japanese tea ceremony in Tokyo, but don’t worry. With so much available information on the internet, it only takes a few minutes to find the best places to experience a traditional Japanese tea ceremony in Tokyo.
In this article, I’m going to share with you recommendations of the best way to be able to experience and participate in a traditional Japanese tea ceremony, the best places to participate in one, and more recommendations. So, sit tight and keep reading!
What is a Japanese tea ceremony?
Japan is known for its matcha (a fine powder of Japanese green tea), and its traditional tea ceremony, called chanoyu or sado in Japanese. It’s a choreographic Japanese cultural activity of preparing and serving matcha with wagashi, a traditional Japanese sweet to balance out the tea’s bitterness.
Tea ceremonies have been held in Japan for over 1000 years, the tradition remains. It continues to gain the interest of tourists to experience and participate in one. However, more Japanese tea ceremonies in some places are starting to adapt it to more of the ‘touristy’ or the commercial value.
But, there are still places where you can participate in a traditional Japanese tea ceremony, some of which will be mentioned in this article.
Recommended places for traditional Japanese tea ceremony in Tokyo
You might not know where to try tea ceremonies in Tokyo, so here is a list of places to experience them, divided into 3 groups which you can choose from according to your preferences.
If you want to experience a Japanese tea ceremony with a low cost, here’s where.
You can experience a 20-minute Japanese tea ceremony with a fee of ¥500 (US$ 4.5) from Fridays to Sundays (12:30pm-4: 30 pm)
|Address:||2 Chome-1-1 Yaesu, Chūō-ku, Tōkyō-to 103-0028 (map)|
|Business hours:||10:30am-7:00 pm (Close on the last Wednesday of March and September, Year-end-New Year Holiday)|
If you want to have a more luxurious experience of a Japanese tea ceremony, here’s where.
You can experience a Japanese tea ceremony for ¥4000 (US$ 37). If you want to experience it while wearing a kimono, the set plan costs ¥5000 (US$ 46). However, prior booking is required.
|Address:||〒111-0032 Tokyo, Taitō, 浅草2-7-24ぱんだカフェ茶の花2階 (map)|
11:00am-5:00 pm (Monday, Tuesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday)
*close on Wednesdays and Thursdays (except public holidays) and every Fridays from the period of February 2 until March 16 of 2018.*
Authentic Japanese tea ceremonies usually have a peaceful quiet atmosphere that should be maintained during the whole ceremony. For families, especially with little children, that can be hard to achieve. But, if you still want to experience a Japanese tea ceremony as a family, here's where.
→Coredo Muromachi's "the Way of Tea"
You can experience an hour-long traditional Japanese tea ceremony at a price of ¥5,500 (US$ 51). For children, it costs ¥3,500 (US$ 32). Although it's a little on the expensive side, it is recommended for families and tourists who want to hear the explanations and trying to make the tea themselves. A reservation one day ahead before 5:00 pm, is required as it only takes place twice a week. The event is on every Saturdays, from 1:00pm-2:00pm and 2:30pm-3:30pm.
|Address :||1-5-5 Nihombashi Muromachi | Kyorakutei, Coredo Muromachi 3, 3F, Chuo 103-0022, Tokyo Prefecture|
|Phone :||+81 3-3242-0010|
|Business hours :||10:00am-9:00pm (Daily)|
What’s the best way to be able to experience a Japanese tea ceremony?
There are multiple ways to experience a Japanese tea ceremony. You can go to a place and enjoy some matcha and sweets, and some people would call it a tea ceremony (even though it’s not the traditional one) or you can go to places (some of which are mentioned above) and experience a real traditional Japanese tea ceremony.
But you can’t always guarantee if it is what you expected. You may also be participating in it, but can’t understand a clue what they are saying since it is done in Japanese. So, if you want a definite satisfactory, the best way is to join private tours for a Japanese tea ceremony.
With a private tour, you will know what to expect and you can experience a real traditional Japanese tea ceremony. You can also hear the explanations of the tea ceremony and ask questions you have to your private guide you will have if you join a private tour.
You don't have to trouble yourself with having to find places, the direction or reservations to get to experience tea ceremonies in Tokyo, as your guide will sort it out for you.
Where to join a private tour?
There are many places on the web that offer private tours, but you can’t be sure whether they are good and a trustworthy website or not. You don’t know what to expect. That’s why I’m recommending you TripleLights. The private tours available with set itineraries are planned carefully and in the best way possible and are customizable to match your preferences and needs.
You can also hire private guides to let them tell you the best places to The guides in the TripleLights website know a lot about Tokyo and will be able to bring you to the best places to have a deeper experience of Japanese tea ceremony. Not just the generic ones, but the secret places as well.
My recommendation for a guide who is experienced about Japanese tea ceremonies, and know the hooks and crannies of them, is Hiromi, a licensed guide in Japan. Just click her name if you want to book her. She will be able to give you insight about tea ceremonies and let you have a deeper experience of it.
Where to best experience and participate in a traditional Japanese tea ceremony?
Here are some of the best tours which you can join if you are looking for a real traditional experience of Japanese tea ceremony with more depth, and in places that are outside the generic choices.
From the Zen Buddhism Meditation & Tea Ceremony tour, you can experience a Zen meditation and a tea ceremony with the insights from Hiromi, a licensed guide to guide you. You can also experience the culture by joining Experience a Tea Ceremony & Japanese Garden, from which you can participate in an authentic traditional tea ceremony and enjoy the park.
Wait, there's more.
Here are other tours provided by companies to experience a real traditional Japanese Tea ceremony in Tokyo:
I hope this article helps give you useful information about how you can experience real traditional tea ceremonies without hassle, some of the best places to try and experience the Japanese tea ceremony in Tokyo, and also recommended tour guide and private tours for Japanese tea ceremony experience. I hope you have a great Japanese tea ceremony experience!