Back in the good old days when people were allowed a little more annual leave, Kyushu monks would spend long periods of time wandering around China picking up tea-making techniques and dabbling with Buddhism.
On returning in 1191, a student monk named Eisai planted Japan’s first green tea seeds at Ryosenji Temple, on the border of Fukuoka and Saga Prefectures. As if that wasn’t enough, he also founded Japan’s first Zen Buddhist Temple. Shokufuji Temple, Hakata, remains to this day, though any original tea plants have long since perished.
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