Kamakura day trip: Gokurakuji Station to Yuigahama Beach

dscn8019.jpg 536.56 KB

After leaving Daibutsu I intended to walk to Kamakura Station and hop onto the Enoden Line and head over to Gokurakuji Station, but I saw a temple gate from the road and took a turn up to Hasedera instead. I hadn’t added Hasedera to my itinerary because I thought I wouldn’t have time, but it was only a few of minutes from Daibutsu and right next to where I stopped for “lunch”. It was still 11am so I wasn’t in a hurry. Though at this time the temple was full of people, I’m sure I would’ve enjoyed it more had it been emptier. It wasn’t even the weekend (it was a Tuesday) so I’m pretty sure whoever thinks about visiting Hasedera at noon on a Sunday would be pretty overwhelmed.
View from Hasedera
dscn8047.jpg 560.36 KB

I went to Hase Station and continued my way to Gokurakuji Station. In the first episode of the anime Elfen Lied, one of the characters is seen arriving at Gokurakuji Station -the whole anime is set in Kamakura- and I was on my way to see the places that make an appearance in the anime, walking my way to the beach. It was much more beautiful than I expected and would recommend going to anyone, regardless of whether you’ve seen the show or not. There were no foreign tourists but a few Japanese people were doing the same walk as I did, so maybe it’s popular for some other reason. I doubt everyone was there because of Elfen Lied. There were also many people next to me on the bridge above the train tracks waiting to take a photo of the passing train. I thought I was the only person who loved the train, but I learned later that the Enoden Line is pretty famous and a common spot for train-spotters.
dscn8052.jpg 457.29 KB

On the opposite side of the station there’s a smaller temple (Gokurakuji Temple) with a pretty entrance full of hydrangeas.
dscn8068.jpg 454.11 KB

Once you leave the station you take a turn to the left and all you have to do is head downhill. You’ll soon come to Jojuin Temple at the top of some stairs: the view of the beach and Kamakura town from the top is stunning. Kamakura graveyard and a small shrine full of white banners are seen along the road, and it’s just generally a nice and quick walk.
dscn8082.jpg 440.14 KB

After the graveyard I decided to take a turn to the right and walk between the houses instead of down the main road, finding a few squirrels running along the electrical cables and rooftops as well as a couple of smaller shrines. Even if you try to get lost in the little lanes between houses, the beach is hard to miss since it stands out so much, so eventually I came out and crossed the road that runs along beside the beach and down next to the shore.
dscn8123.jpg 546.79 KB
dscn8137.jpg 463.64 KB

There was a class of schoolchildren picking up glass along the beach, although a few of them were distracted. I mostly spent about an hour just walking along the beach until I headed back into town and found my hostel for the night. It was only about 3pm once I arrived, so I took a stroll through the town until I found a konbini, bought some food and returned to the hostel to talk to the other guests for the rest of the day. There was a guy who was cycling around Japan, I don’t know if he was doing just selected bits instead of the whole country since he arrived to Yokohama by Ferry, but he had some good stories to tell. He told me he’d just seen Miyakejima’s volcano from the ferry (or more likely it was Mt.Mihara from Oshima since Miyakejima is pretty far out), so I was glad to talk to him about Japanese locations and where he’d been to.
I love the amount of cables hanging in the streets!

Well, that's my day in Kamakura! Kamakura is a popular day trip from Tokyo so I'm sure many of you have also been. How did your visit go?

Sam Lesmana