When I have guests from out of the country visiting us here in Tokyo, my favorite place to take them is Kamakura. Often, since I’ve done a lot of the common sites before, I send visitors to certain places to see themselves, but when it comes to Kamakura, I want to show them everything I can. Today was no exception. We have good family friends in town, and I took them to see the sights.
Kamakura is a small, seaside town whose claim to fame is that of an ancient capital of Japan with the shogun government of Minamoto Yoritomo in 1192. He wanted to establish a capital as far from Kyoto as he could, and found Kamakura ideal because it’s surrounded by mountains on three sides and the sea on another . The Kyoto shogunate sent warriors to crush the Kamakura rulers in 1333 and power returned to Kyoto.
There are 65 temples and 19 shrines to be seen in Kamakura, but by this time I have my favorites in the Hachimingu Shrine, the Daibutsu Buddha and the Hase Kannon Temple. In between there are delightful shops to explore, landscapes to admire and sweet treats to eat.
We had wonderful weather which made for a glorious day. Just an hour outside of central Tokyo, don’t miss this beautiful testament to Japan’s rich history.