Despite going to Kamakura with the idea of seeing another side of it to what it’s famed for, I still ended up going to a few temples but they weren’t immediate on this trip. When I left home at 7:00 am back in April I wasn’t aware that it was going to be such a blazing hot day so I had no hat, glasses or sunscreen with me. Consequently I ended up getting a British tan! Or sunburned as most other people say!
Inamuragaseki station was my first port of call after a short ride on the Enoden Line from Kamakura station. The cape was my destination and from there I walked round the coast to Yuigahama which took about half an hour.
All my initial locations were covered in ‘On The Trail Of Shin Godzilla #4‘ but once most of them had been done I walked to the eastern side of Kamakura to Hokoku-ji buddhist temple (2-7-4 Jomyoji) as I wanted to see what all this bamboo forest malarkey was about. The Arashiyama (Kyoto) one has become hugely popular with tourists (particularly those from overseas) over the last few years and before this trip I actually had no interest in Arashiyama. However, I inadvertently ended up seeing that one last month but Hokoku-ji came first. I found out about it in some kind of Facebook advert which targeted me as someone who might be interested in it. As is often the case, they promoted the right kind of thing to me!
This temple (a far easier option than the Kyoto one) has also grown in popularity in recent times. Given the huge increase in visitors to Japan in the last few years I guess everywhere is growing in popularity as they seek less touristy places.
Entry was 200 yen, and it was quite busy with most visitors there to experience the beauty and the power of 2000 Moso-bamboo which are the biggest species.
Wanting to save a bit of time (and energy!) I took the bus back and disembarked at the colossal Tsurugaoka-hachimangu Shrine (2-1-31 Yukinoshita). I had a quick look and walk around but didn’t ascend the steps as I wanted to move on. Besides, I climbed to the top of this temple on my last trip to Kamakura in 2014 when I visited it mainly because it featured in ‘House Of Bamboo‘ (1955). The beauty of such places, is that they still look pretty much the same as they did many decades ago!
Meigetsu-in Temple (Yamanouchi 189) was pretty much my final destination. I was quite taken aback by the 500 yen entrance but wasn’t going to be stubborn about it. I’d never heard of this place until last years when I saw it in a painting from my friend Yayu at her exhibition in Harajuku last October (which got tagged on to the end of a post about a Star Wars art exhibition in the same area). Her painting (below) was quite beautiful and impressive and I was intrigued to see how it appeared in reality.
It was a nice, serene place but outside of the hydrangea blooming season it was not quite how I imagined on the back of the art viewing and maybe a little artistic license!
Similar to my first temple of the day, there was a cave and a zen garden. Other features of this temple, founded in the year 1160, include a beautiful teahouse (with a round window), a lot of greenery and a nice bridge over the stream running through it.
There was a final detour back towards Kamakura Station. Half way between there and Kita-Kamakura Station on the Yokosuka Line is this bridge which featured briefly in ‘Shin Godzilla‘ (2016) but I’ve included it here too as I think it’s a nice shot.
Click here to read ‘Otagi Nenbutsu Temple And The Bamboo Forest In Arashiyama’
Click here to read ‘Tokyo Daytripper: Kamakura (2014)’
Click here to read ‘Tokyo Daytripper: Kamakura (2006)’