A Travellerspoint blog

A Journey through the Land of the Rising Sun

Tokyo, Japan

View Around the World! - Part 2 on Where2FromHere's travel map.

Today we visited Kamakura, a coastal city situated just south of Yokohama. Kamakura was once Japan's ancient capital and the seat of the Kamakura shogunate from 1185 to 1333, making it a city with a rich historical background. During our visit, we had the opportunity to explore several historic landmarks, including the bronze Great Buddha, or Daibutsu, which is a national treasure.


This 13th-century bronze statue of Amida Buddha, initially housed in a huge wooden hall which was washed away in the tsunami of 1498. It is the second largest seated Buddha in the country, weighing 121 tons and is really impresssive.

Kamakura's historical significance and cultural heritage make it a fascinating destination for anyone interested in Japanese history and culture. Our tour proceeded to Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, which dates back to 1063. To reach the shrine, there is a long, wide path, lined with trees filled with cherry blossoms, that started at Kamakura's waterfront and extended through the entire city center. The main hall was situated on a terrace at the end of a broad stairway.


After climbing the stairs to the main hall, we leisurely walked around the shrine's grounds, appreciating the tranquil ponds and serene natural surroundings.


A few miscellaneous sights that caught our eye were - the cones that were unlike our stark orange traffic cones in the US, the fences of bamboo and the barrels of saki in storage.


After our return to the ship, we embarked on a second excursion, this time to downtown Tokyo for an evening tour that did not disappoint. We made our way to the iconic Tokyo Tower, which stands at 333 meters tall and is a prominent landmark in central Tokyo. Completed in 1958, it is the world's tallest, self-supported steel tower, symbolizing Japan's post-war resurgence as a major economic power. In the photo below you can see the tower's nighttime illumination that cast a reflection on a distant building.


As we stood on the observation deck, we marveled at the dazzling lights of Tokyo stretching out below us. Glass panels were strategically placed on the floor in several spots, offering a thrilling view of the distant ground beneath the tower. Among the many photos I took, my favorite was of a young Japanese boy captivated by the view below as he peered through the glass.


Posted by Where2FromHere 11:02 Archived in Japan

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