Longjing Tea Village, also known as Dragon Well is a small village in Hangzhou, located upon hills on the southwest side of the West Lake. This place is around 1,200 years old and is home to Longjing Tea. The best tea in China also praised as the “Green Queen” and “Golden Card”.
This village is perfect for walking and a must for lovers of natural sightseeing. Hangzhou’s Longjing Tea plantations help you better understand and appreciate the beautiful green fields and the tea culture of Chinese.
This place is beautiful throughout the year, but the best season to visits are fall and spring. If you have the chance to go on March or April, you have the opportunity to witness tea picking up close.
Green tea has many types, and one of its best types in China is Longjing Tea or Dragon Well Tea. This tea is grown in the area surrounding West Lake in Hangzhou for more than 1,200 years.
Because of its sweet flavor and overpowering scent it has earned the names “Green Queen” and “Golden Card”. The villagers grow Longjing Tea in the fertile lands of the village. The reason the grounds are so lush here lies in the lovely climate of the area and the high mountain located around.
Longjing Tea has four types, and each type is grown in a specific plantation. The types of Longjing tea and the place they are cultivated are:
- Shi (Lion) in Shifeng Plantation
- Long (Dragon) in Longjing Plantation
- Yun (Cloud) in Yunqi Plantation
- Hu (Tiger) in Hupao Plantation
To better capture the essence of Longjing Tea and its substantial impact on Chinese culture, you can visit the plantations.
Longjing Tea History
Regions south of Yangtze River and Hangzhou were often visited by Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty. On one of his travels, he visited Longjing Shifeng and learned how to pick tea.
On that day he heard his queen mother became sick. When the emperor head back home, returned to his mother. The queen mother smelt the Longjing Tea from the emperor’s sleeves and after drinking the water of the tea, felt much better.
Excited about his mother getting better, Emperor Qianlong adored the Longjing Tea and sent an order for the people to pick the tea every year and send it to his mother queen as a present. It was after this that the Longjing Tea earned its fame and became the best of tea in all of China.
There is also a local myth about the name Longjing. It is said that in olden days, there was a spring which ran in the village and people thought the water is a courtesy of the Chinese dragon. Based on this, people of the village put a carving dragon head on the spring which water was flowing through its mouth.
Later, a geomancer felt that the water from the spring is magical. So the geomancer suggested to dig a well there, and since then, the name Longjing or Dragon Well came into use.
Longjing Tea Plantations
To experience the pure form of Longjing Tea, you had better visit the plantations in Hangzhou.
The name of the Meijiawu Village is integrated with Longjing Tea. This small village earned its fame through multiple visits by Zhou Enlai, the Premier of the People’s Republic of China informally knows as Prime Minister.
In this village, you can see beautiful mountains, waterways and pretty houses next to tea plantation fields, like a well-painted picture. When visiting the Meijiawu Village, the air is filled with scents of different type of teas, and if you are lucky, you may hear the singing of little birds too that all in all, would bring an enjoyable and relaxing experience.
You can also buy Longjing Tea here as a gift or souvenir for your loved ones. There is a tax-free store in Meijiawu Village where you can easily buy the local tea.
If you want to get a better grasp of tea picking, you can do it alongside tea growers in March and April. During April and May, there is another interesting even in Meijiawu Village. If you visit the village before and after Tomb Sweeping Day, you can taste the new Longjing Tea of the year.
Located on the southwest of West Lake, this place is the origin place of Longjing Tea has earned the title for the best tea village in China. The Longjing Tea grown here is Long (Dragon) and is considered the best one among all the original places.
Longjing village has high mountains surrounding it and has over 800 residents and nearly 800 acres of Longjing Tea plantations. There you can visit the farms with their astonishing view which alongside the aroma of the tea, can easily make you relax.
You can also take a walk to the Hugongmiao Temple at Shifeng in Longjing Village. There you can see the “eighteen Emperor Tea Trees” where Emperor Qianlong did his tea picking.