In the city of Kamakura, there are 2 very famous landmarks; the Daibutsu (Great Buddha), and the Shinto shrine Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu……we went to see them both :)
The Daibutsu is one of the most famous icons of Japan, and it is massive :P
It’s a bronze Buddha that’s around 13 meters tall, and weighs around 93 tonnes…..it’s very impressive, especially when you consider that it was made in about 1252.
Originally it sat in a hall, but that was destroyed by a tsunami, leaving only the statue remaining.
You can even go inside the statue, which is really cool :D
Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu is a Shinto shrine located at the centre of Kamakura, and it’s quite a large complex, with a long path leading up to it from a huge torii gate.
It seems to be very popular with international tourists, and we saw many tour groups there (at the Daibutsu too)
The shrine is in a really nice setting, surrounded by trees, and overlooking the city below :)
There used to be a giant Ginko tree that stood beside the stairs leading up to the shrine. It was about 1,000 years old, but it uprooted (possibly due to rot) in 2010……a section of it’s trunk that was replanted nearby has produced leaves though, and so has the remaining stump; so there may one day be another giant tree next to those steps ^^