Kamakura [鎌倉]

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 to 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 a very large statue! So we get off the train around 10am, and start walking from the station to the beach, with every step more of the sea breeze filling our nostrils. And there it was! And so, as most mature colleg 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 Bhudda statues in Japan! And it was hollow! So we could venture inside the Bhudda! 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)! So we boarded! It was about a fifteen minute ride, after which were found ourselves at the tip of the coast and at the foot of a very long bridge that would take us to the island!  Don't let the perceived size fool you! It was a VERY long bridge, and when we finally got to the island, we found out that it had a winding staircase all the way to the top, and then down the back! It was a very steep climb, but incredibly rewarding due to the fact that the whole way was littered with shrines and temples that requires further investigation. At the very top, you wee 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 animus!)


   But we weren't done yet! We still needed to decend the backside of the island! As we meandered downed took notice of small fish shops and island cats who sat around waiting for a chance to steal their spoils. At the bottom, were were pleasantly greeted with a series of caves, called "Cave of the Dragon God". 

   Of course, in order to get back off the island you had to climb all the way back up to the top and then down the way you came, but were we actually quite fortunate in this! By the time we finally made it to the peak, it was nearly sunset! So we sat down at this little Trattoria with an un obstructed view of the horizon, and wine and dined on pizza while watching what I can honestly say was the most spectacular sunset I have ever whitnessed. As soon as the sun reach the point where the land met the earth, we were given a perfect backlit view of Mount Fuji! Ironically, the restore unit had an English radio station playing overhead. All of us had been keeping up with the elections going on back in the US, and most of us vowed that if Romney became president we would just stay in Japan! It was during this spectacular sunset that we heard "... And Obama has been voted to stay for a second term!..." 

   Now came the tricky part. While we were enjoying our picturesque sunset, the world decided to get dark on us! The climb up 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 10:00pm, and were were taking the 11:00pm 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 not before getting donuts! And so ended a perfect day in Kamakura!

Travelers List
What to pack? Good shoes and a swimsuit!  
Money? The ¥. Bring enough for trains and lunch. 
What to take on a day out? Sandals. Swimsuit, small towel, camera, and decent shoes for stairclimbing, 
Danger? Um... Possibly dragons, though is missed those. 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 Buddah! 


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