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Buddhas, Tea, Pavilions and Gardens
CHINA AND JAPAN
At a time when relations between China and Japan are tense, get a different perspective and explore the rich cultural history they share.

From at least the 5th century, Japanese emissaries visited China. From that point on, many aspects of Chinese culture became intertwined with Japanese culture. Some have been lovingly preserved for centuries while others have evolved into new interpretations. Take a China-Japan trip and experience their cultural heritage side-by-side.


BIG BUDDHAS
Buddhist culture from China took root in Japan and flourished for centuries. Contact between Chinese and Japanese monks led to one of the world's great cultural exchanges.
  • Set out on a pilgrimage to China's monumental Buddhas made of wood and clay in Gansu Province and the giant stone Buddhas in Shanxi Province
  • Continue on to Japan and pay homage to the spectacular 13th century bronze Buddha at Kamakura 
  • The monumental bronze Buddha at Nara is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and takes you back to its early Chinese origins 
  • The Shoso-in at Nara is a treasure trove which has preserved some of China's most precious artifacts
THE WAY OF TEA
Tea in China was originally used in rituals and as medicine. By the 7th century, Buddhist monks discovered that tea helped them stay awake during long meditation periods. By the 9th century, tea became a revered beverage, complete with exquisite ceramics and crafted implements for preparing the tea. A culture around tea developed and was introduced to Japan where it thrived and evolved into a ceremony.
  • Travel to China's Yunnan and Sichuan Provinces to see the oldest tea trees in the world 
  • Meet with Chinese tea connoisseurs for tastings of Pu'er, Oolong, Green and White teas 
  • Appreciate the art of Japanese tea ceremony with tea masters around Japan
  • Visit renowned Japanese potters who make tea bowls especially for the tea ceremony
PAVILIONS, PAGODAS & PLANTS
Surrounded by rapid urbanization are traditional wooden buildings and gardens. Compare the similarities and then contemplate the differences between traditional Chinese and Japanese architecture and landscaping. 
  • Linger through the Chinese scholars gardens in Suzhou and step back in time to the lifestyle of the literati
  • Meditate in the Japanese gardens and temples of Kyoto 
  • Stay in an ancient wooden house at the foot of China's Yellow Mountain
  • Drive through the Japanese Alps and explore its unique wooden housing 
CLICK TO CONTACT US ABOUT CURATING YOUR TRIP.
Bonsai originated in China as Penjing.
 
Pictured at top is a folding fan decorated with Chinese calligraphy. The folding fan was a Japanese invention and became popular in China in the 10th century.

Chinese writing was introduced to Japan around the 5th century. Today, about 3000 Chinese characters, known as kanji, are still commonly used to write Japanese. 


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AND ITS RELATIONS WITHIN ASIA
 
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