Hangzhou Hosts Tea Festival

A major Chinese Tea Festival opened Saturday in Hangzhou, a scenic lakeside city, which is noted for its "West Lake Longjing" tea.

Organized by the city's tourism committee and the government of the West Lake District, the event will put on a series of tea ceremonies, performances and rites in accordance with folk customs and traditions in the area.

Since China was one of the earliest tea producers in the world, tea-drinking has a long tradition in the culture of the Chinese people, experts said.

East China's Zhejiang Province, of which Hangzhou is the capital, is the center of tea production in China. "West Lake Longjing" tea was drunk by Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) as his imperial tea.

A tea museum was built on the shores of the West Lake in 1991.

(People's Daily March 31, 2002)

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