Friday, January 28, 2011

Tea Tour Korea Itinerary May 5-20, 2011

Tea Tour Korea seeks to introduce our guests to a Korea steeped in the traditions of Tea and Tea Ware and at the same time touch on the importance of the master traditions of several other aspects of Korean arts and culture through personal introductions to some of Korean Intangible Cultural Assets from other fields.  The logistics in developing this journey have been complex and will continue, but the bones are here and as we get closer to the tour they will be fleshed out to reveal what we hope will be an exceptional journey into the heart of Korean culture through Tea and ceramics. 
This post reveals the structure of the tour.  Each week, I hope to add a little more to the story and expand on the brief commentary you will find below.  We hope that you will join us on this very special adventure.
What to do and where to go will follow by personal email to each guest once the Tea Tour participants have made definite commitments.   It is time to make those commitments so email us soon.  This is a non-profit tour the final price will depend on the final number of guests.

Tea Tour Korea Tentative Itinerary.

May 05  Leave for Korea (Depending on your time zone)
Most of you will be crossing the IDL (International Dateline Line).  If you are in that group, you leave on May 5, 2011

F May 06 Seoul (provide your own meals)
Guests will arrive at the Seoul/Incheon Airport (ICN).  We will attempt to arrange meeting groups to gather at the airport and travel to the Hotel together.  

S May 07: Move to Mungyeong
This is a “6, 7, 8, 9 day”.  This means you rise at 6 AM, have breakfast at 7 AM, meet with Brother Anthony at 8 AM then board the bus at 9 AM for Mungyeong At 8 AM Brother  Anthony AnSonjae will present a discussion on Korean Green tea.  Brother Anthony of Taize is co-author of The Korean Way of Tea and a translator of Korean Tea Classics.  We are honored that he will be joining us.  
Move to Mungyeong.  Spend the afternoon at the Mungyeong Tea Bowl Festival. Some of the best tea ware artists in Korea live in Mungyeong including the only National ICA in Choson style ceramic ware - Kim Jong Ok.

S May 08 : Mungyeong 
This is a 6,7 8 day.  Rise at 6, breakfast at 7 depart for Mungyeong at 8. 
Spend the day and evening visiting the studios of selected Mungyeong artists.  This is the last day of the festival so there may be a ‘mixture’ between these two days in Mungyeong.

M May 09 : Icheon/Yeoju
This is another 6,7 8 day.  We go to Yeoju and Icheon
Icheon and Yeoju WOCEF Museums, visit important ceramic artists
including the Hae Gang Celadon Museum a tribute to the famous celadon artist Haegang (Yoo Kun-hyung).  Some of the most important and most interesting ceramic artists live in these cities we will visit a few of them and other outstanding artists. 

T May 10 : Gyeongju  (Buddha’s Birthday)
Gyeongju is one of the most important historic cities of Korea.  It was the capitol of the Silla Kingdom (57 BC – 935 AD) and as such is important to both Tea (tea was first planted in Korea during this period) and tea ware (the ceramics from this period is historically significant and in my opinion stunning.  We have several interesting events planned for this stop.

W May 11 : Gyeongju – Gimhae – Jinju

Early morning visit Seokkur-am and Bulgoksa move to Ulsan onggi village  Visit Gimhae National Museum. Move to Sancheong. We are now in tea country where wild tea flourishes in the mountains.

T May 12 : Sancheong - Hadong (B/D)
Visit Min Young Ki internationally renowned tea ware artist considered by some Japanese tea ware connoisseurs as "the best in Asia".  We then Move to Hadong visiting the tea area along the way.

F May 13 : Hadong – Hadong-Hwaeomsa Temple
Brother Anthony and Hong Kyeong-hee join tour.  Visit Private tea producers near Hadong, visit tea museum; drive to Hwagye valley.   View tea-fields.  Visit Ssanggye-sa temple. Arrive at Hwaeom-sa Temple, our Tea Temple  Over night at Hwaemsa-Temple stay or nearby Motel

S May 14 : Hwaemsa Temple
The morning chanting in the temple begins at about 3:30AM after the ringing of the bell etc.  Attendance is optional though encouraged (unique experience!).  Morning spent picking tea Afternoon spent drying and rolling freshly picked leaves. Over night at Hwaemsa-Temple stay.

S May 15 : Hwaemsa Temple – Boseong – Gangjin
Starts as yesterday. Receive completely dried, packed tea in the morning. Drive to Boseong. Visit Lee Hak Soo onggi (ICA) potter and Bosong Tea Plantation. Drive to Gangjin; visit the home of Dasan and Baekryeon-sa Temple.  Visit Ven Yo Yeon.  Visit the great celadon tea ware artist Jung Ki-bong.

M May 16 : Gangjin
Visit Gangjin Celadon Museum.  Drive to Daeheung-sa temple. Tour temple. Visit Tea ware artists

T May 17 : Gangjin – Chungwon-Seoul
Move to Chung Won-gun visit ceramic artist Lee Kang Hyo and Lee Tae Ho move to Seoul.

W May 18 : Seoul
Move to Bucheon Intangible Cultural Assets site,  meet Ha Il Nam Evening Tea 
Over night at Sunbee Hotel

T May 19 : Seoul
Free day in Seoul.   Evening Chongdong Theater, Traditional Korean Music and Dance

F May 20
Leave for Home

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