Tokyo - Kamakura

Kamakura is an easy side trip from Tokyo. Reaching Kamakura takes about an hour from Tokyo. This coastal town features some nice temples, shrines, and a beach.

Kamakura is a recommended destination if your trip only is Tokyo-based. If you’re also visiting the Kansai area, you might want to consider Kyoto and Nara for your dose of culture.

Big Buddha (Daibutsu)

The main attraction is the big Buddha statue:

Buddha

The entrance to see the Big Buddha is just ¥200 for adults. You can take a bus there from Kamakura station or alternatively you can take a hiking trail.

Kamakura beach - Yuigahama (由比ヶ浜)

Kamakura has a large beach called Yuigahama. It’s a lively place in summer, but by the first of September the place can be pretty empty. It’s a 15 minute walk from Kamakura station.

Don’t expect to find public lockers and showers. If you want to have access to a locker and shower, you’ll pay a beachhouse an approxiate fee of ¥1500 (with ¥500 deposit) for a wristband that has a locker key. The beachhouse then provides lockers and showers. Most beachhouses sell a variety of food, drinks and of course ice cream.

The beach can be a bit dirty - there is rubbish in the water sometimes as well as plants that get in the way when swimming. However, if the weather is anything like when I visited (33 degrees+) you just want to get in the water, no matter what.

The beach is also a good (wind) surfing spot.

Hasedera temple

Hasedera is a favorite Buddhist temple visit, conveniently located near the Big Buddha. Next to the typical temple buildings, there’s a cave, and a hill to climb where you can have a panoramic overview of Kamakura.

Engakuji temple

Engakuji temple

Engakuji temple is a beautiful buddhist temple with a variety of small well-kept gardens.

Next to this, the temple also features the largest bell. After taking the 100+ stairs to reach the bell, enjoy a cold macha tea at the top.

How to reach: Coming from Tokyo, stop at Kita-Kamakura station (1 station before Kamakura station). The entrance is about 50m from the station