Day 6

My long range expedition day far south of Tokyo to Kamakura, an ancient city with a history and home to a host of famous temples.

Luckily Ueno has direct express to Ofuna, once there I buy a day pass for the Kamakura area and transfer further south to North Kamakura. The plan is to walk down from here to Kamakura, where I’ll catch the tram to Enoshima, a small scenic island.

It’s a great morning, the sun casting down on this town whose wooden buildings have survived through the ages.

North Kamakura


Nice small town feel, with the road next to the train tracks


Traditional wooden houses



I suppose this is when proper research would have prevailed. Sigh. I don’t know why I didn’t check into these. Maybe I thought monks are early starters, or perhaps because the shinto shrines I’ve been to all start out early. But it turns out many of the temples in Kamakura aren’t open till 9:30 or 10.

Things… start to go abit downhill, figuratively and literally, as I walk down the only road toward Kamakura.

Supposedly this is meant to be a quiet town, but maybe it’s the time of the day… or it’s close to end of the year, the road is full of traffic. On a calm windless morning the exhaust is highly unpleasant. I begin to develop a headache.



Kencho-ji Temple

I got a pretty bad headache by the time I reach Kencho-ji temple. Because of my headache I actually decided to skip the temple and hope to get down into Kamakura where I hope to find a warm place to rest. Worst, choice, ever.

If I had stayed and toured the temple, I might have recovered from the exhaust induced headache… now, I’ve only exacerbated it.

Tsurugoaka Hachiman-gu Shrine



At last I make it down to Kamakura, and I take a coffee break at Beck’s near the station…

Didn’t help too much, but I do feel a little better.

After a half hour’s rest I figure I gather myself to continue the day’s plan. Bad choice again… I should have gotten a cup of tea and rest for another half hour.

Any case, Hogoku-ji Temple is about 10-15min walk from Kamakura station. Famed for its forest of bamboos.

Hogoku-ji Temple






It’s a beautiful place, and Kamakura overall is just this wonderful town unspoiled by modern life.

Unfortunately by the time I got back to Kamakura station I am exhausted with a terrible headache…

This is where traveling solo has its disadvantage.

If I was traveling with another, I might have found a place to sit down, or continue on and rest while on the tram. But I was by myself. I’m exhausted, over an hour from Tokyo. I was not sure if my situation got any worse I’ll be able to get back.

I made a choice then to cut the day short then and there, a choice I regret now, but at the time it felt the safer choice.

I think I should have gone on, skipping the rest of the shrines and temples that needed walking, but took the tram to Enoshima, have lunch, and by then the day will have warmed up and I’m sure I’d be able to continue on the day…

Well, first time solo, some mistakes are inevitable I suppose. Next time I’ll know to insert a half day’s break every few day to make sure I am adequately rested.










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