I love matcha! Drinking matcha, matcha desserts, matcha tea, latte, if it exists in the form of matcha, I want it! My love for matcha recently took me to one of the most popular cities in Japan – Uji. This town is uniquely known to produce the best matcha (green tea powder) in the country. So, what else is Uji known for, and why is Uji, Japan match the best?
Uji is specifically known for being a famous producer of Japanese green tea. It’s no coincidence that I headed here to try their exquisite tea. Uji (Kyoto prefecture) produces and supplies green tea for many shops and towns around Japan. It’s not uncommon to see a green tea canister marked with the words Uji, Japan.
You’ll find this town nestled between lush green trees stacked on hills. It’s filled with shrines, temples, and beautiful nature scenery. The history of Uji is quite interesting as well. The first account of Ojin is noted in the 4th century when Emperor Ojin built his palace here.
The history around this emperor is part fiction and part historical, creating a somewhat unbelievable tale. This only adds to the magic of Uji. It is said Uji became well-known around 1360 when Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu encouraged and advertised green tea production. Now, you can find historical green tea shops that have been around for years. Below you’ll find additional information on activities that can be done after trying one of the legendary matcha drinks here.
Taking a walking path is an excellent way to see Uji. There are multiple walkways you can take that will allow you to explore the town. Ajirogi-no-michi is one of the main paths that lead through town.
Walking along this path will allow you to see many of the sights in Uji. You’ll start with views of the magnificent Uji River and continue to a pond near the famous Byodin Temple. The pond is mirrorlike and reflects part of the temple through the thick shrubbery. The information center and a tea room where you can find a traditional Japanese tea ceremony also run along this path. If you keep walking on Ajirogi-no-michi, you’ll cross a bridge and a river leading you directly to the other main pathway – Sawarabi-no-michi.
The Uji River is a lovely body of water that travels through the middle of town. It can be crossed by a long bridge and offers many activities like water cruises and sunset fishing. You’ll find many restaurants, tea rooms, and tea shops lie along the Uji River.
Temples and Shrines
The best part about visiting towns in Japan is touring the temples and shrines. It’s a fantastic feeling to be able to step back in time momentarily when you tour these sacred spaces. A few of the shrines and temples to check out include Mampukuji Temple, Ujigami Shrine, and Byodoin Temple.