Top Choice Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


Established in 1253, Japan's oldest Zen monastery is still active today. The central Butsuden (Buddha Hall) was brought piece by piece from Tokyo in 1647. Its Jizō Bosatsu statue, unusual for a Zen temple, reflects …
Top Choice Monument in Kamakura


Kamakura's most iconic sight, an 11.4m bronze statue of Amida Buddha (amitābha in Sanskrit), is in Kōtoku-in, a Jōdo sect temple. Completed in 1252, it's said to have been inspired by Yoritomo's visit to Nara (where…
Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


One of Kamakura's five major Rinzai Zen temples, Engaku-ji was founded in 1282 as a place where Zen monks might pray for soldiers who lost their lives defending Japan against Kublai Khan. All of the temple structure…
Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


The focal point of this Jōdo sect temple, one of the most popular in the Kantō region, is a 9m-high carved wooden jūichimen (11-faced) Kannon statue. Kannon (avalokiteshvara in Sanskrit) is the bodhisattva of infini…
Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


Down the road from Sugimoto-dera, on the right-hand side, is this Rinzai Zen temple with quiet, landscaped gardens where you can relax under a red parasol with a cup of Japanese tea (¥500).
Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


Founded in 1283 by Hojo Morotoki, Jōchi-ji is the fourth of Kamakura’s five great Zen temples. The main gate’s bell on the 2nd floor of the belltower was cast in 1340. Nearby is Kanro-no-ni, one of Kamakura’s 10 rev…
Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


This small temple, founded in AD 734, is reputed to be the oldest in Kamakura. The ferocious-looking guardian deities and statues of Kannon are its main draw. Take a bus from stop 5 at Kamakura Station to the Sugimo…
Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


Across the railway tracks from Engaku-ji, Tōkei-ji is famed as having served as a women's refuge. A woman could be officially recognised as divorced after three years as a nun in the temple precincts. Today, there a…
Shinto Shrine in Kamakura

Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gū

Kamakura's most important shrine is, naturally, dedicated to Hachiman, the god of war. Minamoto Yoritomo himself ordered its construction in 1191 and designed the pine-flanked central promenade that leads to the coa…
Buddhist Temple in Kamakura


The grounds of this secluded picturesque Zen temple make for a pleasant stroll and include gardens laid out by Musō Soseki, the temple's esteemed founder. To get here, take the bus from stop 4 at Kamakura Station an…