News from JNTO

Tea Ceremony Experience

After tea was introduced from China to Japan, it was approximately about the 15th - 16th century that the highly stylized ritual of the tea ceremony (sado) was established by the upper classes in Japan. From then on, tea gradually spread to the general populace.

A Japanese Tea Ceremony includes much more than the preparation of tea by the host to be enjoyed by guests. These other things would include the selection of the tea confection wagashi (traditional Japanese sweet which always augments to the current season) which is to be enjoyed with the tea, decorative wall scroll, flower arrangement, utensils, kimono, preparation of the room, etc. Sado can be a lovely way to connect with friends, either formally or informally, and share an interval of gracious and hospitable giving and just as gracious a reception in a peaceful environment removed from the daily rush of things.

During your travels in Japan, there are several Japanese gardens and temples where guests may enjoy tea and wagashi. Most have a small admission fee.

Kikugetsu-tei Tea House at Ritsurin Garden (Kagawa)

Ritsurin Garden is considered one of the most beautiful gardens in Japan. It features a stunning landscape space including a Japanese-style garden in the south and western-style garden in the north. In the southwestern part sits Kikugetsu-tei, a teahouse where visitors may enjoy tea, a sweet, and a spectacular view.

For more information, please visit here.

Hosenin Temple (Kyoto)

Built in 1012, Hosenin is located in northern Kyoto. Visitors may enjoy tea in a large tatami room, viewing a magnificent 700-year old pine tree and picturesque bamboo garden while listening to the suikinkutsu - an arrangement of an earthen jar, wooden pipes and stones into which water drips creating a lovely, soothing sound.

  • Fee: 800 yen per person
  • Address: 187 Ohara-Shorinin-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto-city, Kyoto
  • Access: 15 min walk from Kyoto Bus “Ohara” bus stop. 50 minute by taxi from JR Kyoto Station.


Hama-rikyu Gardens (Tokyo)

This traditionally styled garden alongside Tokyo Bay in central Tokyo is bordered by modern skyscrapers. After being a feudal lord's residence, it became a strolling garden and detached imperial palace, and now is open to the public. A teahouse in the middle of the tidal pond which is filled with seawater and whose features change with the flow of the tide provides tea and wagashi to visitors.

For more information, please visit here.

Kodaiji Temple (Kyoto)

Built in 1606, Totoyomi Hideyoshi (Kanpaku from 1583 to 1598) and his wife Kita-no-Mandokoro are both enshrined in this highly decorated and beautifully landscaped temple in Kyoto's Higashiyama district. Visitors may participate in an authentic tea ceremony; reservations are necessary, so please contact the temple before your visit.

For more information, please visit here.

Information is provided as a courtesy to users of this website. Though the JNTO endeavors to ensure the information is accurate, users of the information are to act on such using their own judgement and at their own risk. Neither the JNTO nor any holder of copyright to the information shall be held responsible in any way whatsoever for any loss or misunderstanding, either direct or indirect, that is incurred as a result of utilizing the information.

Japan Highlight



Fantastic insight into Japan's diverse history.



Satisfy the most discerning of palettes, as well as the strictest of budgets.

Pop Culture

Pop Culture

Explore everything Japanese pop culture has to offer.

Modern Art

Modern Art

Visualize Japan's treasured heritage and its cutting-edge future.

Ski in Japan

Ski in Japan

A diamond in the rough for ski enthusiasts and families worldwide.



Breathtaking cruises around Japan.


Affordable Tips

Make a trip to Japan enjoyable and affordable.


go: Tohoku

Experience the treasures of Northern Japan.


Discover the Undiscovered

Explore the undiscovered region in 7 days.


The Heart of Hokkaido

Discover the wild charms of Japan’s northern frontier.


For First Time Travelers

Explore Japan's Iconic Destinations.