This unique certificated "in country" program has been developed personally by Tea Total, CITS (Wuyishan) and Easy Tour China, and is going to teach you the essential skills of production, evaluation and serving of Wuyishan and Oolong tea to give a full understanding of these important teas. This is an industry lead initiative accessing some of the best teachers in the area . As an immersion course you will be enveloped in the culture and "family" of Wuyishan and oolong tea allowing for a greater learning opportunity.
Activities during the course ensure an understanding of place and terrior, cultural significance, history and modern and contemporary issues in production and serving of Wuyishan and Oolong varietals.
Arrive in Wuyishan. Be met at the Wuyishan Airport by our English speaking guide and drive to your Four Star Hotel.
In the evening, after meeting fellow students, we begin the program. Drive to Huangyuming Tea School where we shall meet Prof Chen. Prof Chen is an expert in Fujian Province tea. This evening we shall learn about tea production, processing and evaluation.
Following breakfast we shall visit the opening day of the “Wuyishan & Cross Straits Tea Expo”. This expo ranges over two large sites and is a perfect place to learn about Chinese and Taiwanese tea culture. Meet the producers and processors from these regions and also the artists and producers of high quality tea ware. Here you will learn, first hand, from tea professionals. (Note: Here there are many providers of tea, tea packaging and tea ware for purchase and also much new tea to be tasted and evaluated. The expo runs for three days and you will have an opportunity to revisit as the program permits).
This morning we shall explore the home of Oolong tea when we walk the Wu Yi Mountain Reserve. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site within which the Rock Oolongs and Da Hong Pao are found. In the reserve are many tea gardens displaying Oolong varietals and cultivars. We visit the original "mother bushes" of Da Hong Pao and truly experience the majesty of this area. You will immerse yourself in the terroir of Wuysihan tea and begin to understand what makes this area unique and so special in the world of tea. (This requires moderate activity levels and walking shoes. Weather may be changeable so include light wet weather gear).
After lunch we return to the Huangyuming Tea School. Here we begin Part I of Wuyishan Tea Brewing Techniques. This is a practical class in choosing brewing ware, brewing techniques for types and grades of tea, serving styles and culture.
Each student will have their own tea equipment and will be assisted to achieve competency. (Note: Our hotel has a tea room which will be open for us to use “after hours” to practice our skills, tea teachers will be on hand to assist with technique and questions).
This morning we shall visit the historically and culturally important Xiamei Village. From the Qing Dynsaty this village transported tea to Moscow and into Europe. The trade in tea brought immense wealth to the village. So wealthy did the people become the merchants built luxurious houses, mansions for officials were built and scholars built residences in the village. Even now these well-preserved ancient buildings of the Ming and Qing dynasty styles are the highlights of Xiamei Village. As well as being a village that is still working and thriving, local craftsmen still provide their skills and many tea houses abound. Here we shall visit The Peach Blossom tea house for Xiamei Village and local area tea for assessment and evaluation.
After lunch we shall drive to the premises of Professor Cai in Wuyishan town. Prof Cai is one of the new breed of tea producers. He is also an expert in cupping and judging teas and he will demonstrate and teach the essentials of these important tea skills.
Following dinner we shall go to the performance of “Impressions of Da Hong Pao”, an extravaganza not to be missed when in Wuyishan. (Note: this is an open-air performance so ensure appropriate clothing for this time of year).
Following breakfast we shall drive to the village and tea gardens of Prof Cai. He grows varieties of oolong and some of his bushes are over 150 years old. Here Prof Cai will discuss his agricultural and processing methods and what makes these unique to this area.
After lunch we shall return to the Huangyuming Tea School. We shall continue with Part II of tea brewing methods and ceremonial tea culture skills.
This morning we shall ride the bamboo raft down the Nine Bends River through the “Oolong Mountains and Cliffs” of the Tuanyou Mointains. This is an essential experience to be able to see the terrain that formed these teas so many years ago.
Wuyishan has many fine tea ware shops and tea houses so after lunch we shall take our new knowledge to visit shops to assess and taste teas and compare our notes on quality, processing, value and taste.
This morning we shall visit the Old Confucian Academy and Tian Xin Long Le Temple. We shall have opportunity to make purchases of tea wares and tea provisions at the request of participants.
Following lunch we shall return to Huangyuming for our final demonstration of Wuyishan tea preparation and culture.
Evening will be a farewell dinner and certificate presentation.
Pick up from hotel for your departing flight from Wuyishan airport.