Kamakura (鎌倉) is a coastal town in Kanagawa Prefecture, less than an hour south of Tokyo. It is a small city and a very popular tourist destination. Sometimes called the Kyoto of Eastern Japan, Kamakura offers numerous temples, shrines and other historical monuments. In addition, Kamakura’s sand beaches attract large crowds during the summer months.

Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine is a 10 to 15 minute walk from Kamakura Station East Exit. Founded in 1063, this is the most visited and important Shinto shrine in Kamakura. Every year, more than 2 million people visit here for the first shrine visit of the new year.

Hokokuji Temple is famous for its spectacular bamboo garden and a resting place where you can enjoy Matcha green tea and a sweet Japanese snack. To Hokokuji Temple from Kamakura station, it takes 40 minutes on foot, 7 minutes by taxi or 10 minutes by bus. If you want to take a bus, take a bus number 鎌23, 鎌24, or 鎌36, and get off at Jomyoji bus stop.

Kotokuin Temple is known for the Great Buddha, which is a symbol of Kamakura City.

The Great Buddha in Kotokuin Temple was constructed in 1252, and is 11.31 meters (13.35 meters including the base) in height and about 121 tons in weight. Close to the Kotokuin Temple stands Hase Temple. Hase Temple is famous for its garden full of seasonal flowers all year round and the biggest Kannon statues in Japan. To get to Kotokuin Temple and Hase Temple, take a local train from Kamakura station and get off at Hase station.

The Great Buddha (Daibutsu) on the grounds of Kotokuin Temple in Kamakura, Japan.