Our little escapade to the coast.
In November, a few friends and I decided that we needed to see the Sea of Japan before it became too cold, so one Saturday morning we hopped on a train and took a two-hour ride (couple changeovers) to Kamakura! Unbeknownst to us, this happened to also be home to an enormous statue! So we get off the train around 10 am and start walking from the station to the beach, with every step more of the sea breeze filling our nostrils. And there it was! Thus, as most mature college students would do… We played! Running into the quite cold water, collecting seashells, Ect. For about an hour.
So then we decided to make our way further down the coast and check out more of the town, and were pleased to discover that Kamakura is home to one of the largest Buddha statues in Japan! And it was hollow so we could venture inside the Buddha! Not many can say that I bet! And then we found another expected surprise. Right around the corner was this old local train stop. We asked where it went to, and the told us Enoshima Island (江ノ島). It was about a fifteen-minute ride, after which were found ourselves at the tip of the coast where a long bridge that would take us to the island. The island was host to numerous temples and patronage sites and had winding staircases and terraces all the way up to the top (it was a very tall island). It was a very steep climb, but incredibly rewarding because the whole way was littered with shrines and temples with intricate sculptures that complemented the landscape. At the very top, we were presented with an incredible view, and there were several small restaurants that catered to those fortunate enough to make it up! (We were happy to discover that this was indeed the setting of one of our favorite anime!)
Now came the tricky part. While we were enjoying our picturesque sunset, the world decided to get dark on us! The climb was originally two hours long, and very steep. The climb down didn’t take so long because we weren’t stopping to take in an ancient shrine every five minutes, but it was just as steep and much much darker! But we somehow made it down, crossed the bridge and took our little train back to the beach we had started at. It was only 10:00 pm, and were taking the 11:00 pm train, so college student logic required that we go for a night swim in the Sea of Japan in the middle of November! In the end, only me and Ellie were brave enough to do it, and it was surprisingly warm! It was getting out into the cool night air that was tough, not to mention riding the train back home (2hrs) in wet clothes! But all was made better by a late night donut run before hopping on the train! And so ended a perfect day in Kamakura!
What to pack: Good shoes and a swimsuit!
Money: Bring enough for trains and lunch.
What to take on a day out: Sandals. Swimsuit, small towel, camera, and decent shoes for stair climbing,
Danger: Um… Possibly dragons? Also, those with shellfish allergies be careful where you eat!
When to Go: From summer to late autumn.
Must See: The sunset from the peak of Enoshima! Oh, and the giant Buddha!