Japan Trip – Kamakura

By , June 10, 2010 5:58 pm

April 7th (wed)

Today the weather wasn’t great but we went to Kamakura anyway.
We got off train at Kita Kamakura station to go to Engaku-ji temple.
Engaku-ji temple was founded in 1282.
円覚寺入り口    円覚寺三門 Sanmon Gate
There were beautiful cherry blossoms on the way to the Sanmon Gate. I hadn’t visited at Engaku temple a long time and it is the first time I have seen cherry blossoms here.
sanmon Sanmon gate. This gate was rebuilt around 1785.

仏殿 Butsuden 

Butsuden – The Main hall is in the front of the gate. We tossed some coins and prayed.

選仏場 Senbutujyo

Senbutujyo – the dojo for meditation was built in 1699.

We saw the Koumyochi ponds and Shariden (National Treasure) which is open to the public only on the first three days of the year. Then, finally there was Oubaiin.

We went up steep stairs to the lookout. I was a little disappointed because it was cloudy and we didn’t have a clear view.
The bell on the lookout is a national treasure.
展望台   国宝洪鐘
We left Engaku-ji.

We came in front of Tokei-ji temple but it started rain, so we skipped it and started walking toward to Kencho-ji temple instead.
When we arrived Kencho-ji, it was raining very hard.
The small cherry trees on the path to the gate were full of lovely blossoms.
Kencho-ji temple was founded in 1253.

建長寺  方丈庭園
After we visited Butsuden, we stayed at Hojo garden a while.

I wanted to go to the Hansōbō, but it was still raining hard and the cherry trees along the way were being tended to by the landscaping crew.

We couldn’t see much of the place and we left Kenchoji.
建長寺枝垂桜 The Shidare cherry tree in front of the toilet was beautiful.

We took the bus to Kamakura station and walked to Komachi-street. It was raining and we didn’t want to look around for restaurants. So we decided to try a kaiseki lunch at Akimoto restaurant on the third floor of the building near the entrance of the street. We orderd Shirasu-don lunch set. This was the first time I ate Shirasu-don. (Shirasu is baby sardine.)
Cheese Tofu was served first. It was delicious.
The vegetable tempura were delicious: two types of sweet potatoes, turnips, broccoli, komatsuna, maitake mushrooms and carrots. But it was quit big and a little hard to bite.
Shirasu don is steamed and raw Shirasu on top of a bowl of rice.
Delicious ginger and the shiso are a good contrast to the dish. I add a poached egg when half the dish was eaten. It was good, but the taste of the Shirasu disappeared.
Dessert was Yuzu sorbet. It was delicious. the tea was also tasty. It was all very satisfying.

チーズ豆腐 Cheese Tofu 

しらす丼セット Shirasu-don lunch
Miso soup was red miso. Pickles were cucumber with shiso juice.

ゆずのシャーベット Yuzu sorbet

Tsurugaokahachimangu was crowded, so we stayed at the entrance.
I would have liked to see Tsurugaokahachimangu after the big famous ginkgo tree has been destroyed by strong winds in this spring. That was so sad…

   八幡宮
八幡宮 桜  鳥居

The cherry blossom at Dankazura were not so pretty and quite small.
段葛 Dankazura

We walk through Wakamiyaooji Street and back to the Komachi Street. We bought some souvenirs on the way back to station.
It wasn’t nice to go out in the rain, but I knew what to expect before we left home…

ゆず蜜 Yuzu honey – Sugimoto bee farm
まめ Bean snacks – Kamakura Mameya
はとサブレー Hato Sabres – Toyoshima ya

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