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Tourist attractions Kamakura

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  • 1 Hokoku-ji Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    2-7-4 Jomyo-ji

    The tranquility of the Zen temple of Hokoku-ji is enhanced by its isolated location, which spares it from the hordes of tourists. A teahouse as tiny as a dollhouse provides the ideal spot from which to look at the Buddha sculptures as well as the for..

  • 2 Tokei-ji Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings


    Founded in 1285, Tokei-ji temple was Japan's first nunnery and its residents enjoyed unusual privileges for several centuries. They obtained from the shogun the right to divorce at a time this was still deemed an unreasonable demand from women. The s..

  • 3 Sugimoto-dera Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Kanazawa Kamakura St.

    A small flight of uneven, mossy steps leads to Sugimoto-dera, the oldest temple in Kamakura (founded in 734). The white banners displaying the names of donors stand out against the green of the abundant foliage. The site exudes charm and peace. You w..

  • 4 Hase-dera Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    3-11-2 Hase

    Here you will find Kannon, the Goddess of Mercy. According to legend, this 9m-tall camphor wood sculpture was made in the village of Hase then set adrift in the sea, later washing up on a Kamakura beach. Hase-dera Temple was built to house and honour..

  • 5 Zeniarai-Benzaiten Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Zeniarai-Benzaiten Shrine has both charm and atmosphere. After passing through a tunnel and torii, you emerge into an enormous space that is hewn out of the rock. At the back of a cave is a freshwater spring that the snake goddess Ugajin is said to h..

  • 6 Engaku-ji Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Built by Hojo Tokimune (1251-1284), the eighth regent and military governor of Kamakura, the Zen Buddhist temple complex of Engaku-ji was founded to commemmorate the Japanese and Mongols who died in the dual attempted invasions instigated by the Mong..

  • 7 Meigetsu-in Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Meigetsu-in, the "Bright Moon Hermitage", was built by Yamanouchi Tsunetoshi in 1160 in order to console the departed soul of his father, Toshimichi, who died in the battle of Heiji (1159) fought between the clans of Minamoto and Taira. The..

  • 8 Kencho-ji Recommended Recommended

    Religious buildings


    Kencho-ji is the first and largest Kamakura Zen temple, and was created in the 13C by a Chinese priest who came to spread Zen teachings in Japan. Of most interest is the Bonsho Bell (1255), a designated National Treasure. Opposite the Sanmon, you can..

  • 9 Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu Interesting

    Religious buildings

    The long and formal approach progresses along a promenade lined with cherry trees and punctuated by blood-red gates. Rising up on its esplanade at the top of a flight of stairs is the Shinto Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu Temple, dedicated to the god of war,..

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