Kamakura part two – Kencho-ji

It is and easy walk from Engaku-ji to Kencho-ji, it takes about half an hour and you can get the ice cream and rice crackers menioned in the previous post along the way. Kencho-ji is the largest temple complex in Kamakura. The first photo shows the outer and inner gates, So-mon and San-mon. Note the mound in the second photo. I do not know what it is, but it is impressive.

So-mon and San-mon, Kencho-ji, Kamakura   Kencho-ji, Kamakura
Fountain at Kencho-ji, Kamakura Kencho-ji, Kamakura Lotus plants at Kencho-ji, Kamakura

Above, a fountain, small bells and lotus flowers. Below, a building adjacent to the meditation halls, the interior of a meditation hall and a bamboo grove.

Kencho-ji, Kamakura Hojo, Kencho-ji, Kamakura Bamboo grove at Kencho-ji

If you continue beyond the bamboo grove, you will encounter guardians (Komainu) of the gate, then you’ll see banners on both sides of the path and then more guardians, this time winged ones.

Komainu at Kencho-ji Path to Hansobo, Kencho-ji, Kamakura Guardians of the entrance to Hansobo, Kencho-ji

Do not forget to cleanse yourself in the spring before you continue to the shrine at the top of the stairs and further up to get a view of Kamakura and the sea (I wish we had better weather – as it were, we did not get much of a view).

Kamakura, Kencho-ji Hansobo, Kencho-ji, Kamakura Above Hansobo, Kencho-ji, Kamakura

The spiders! They are everywhere. They are apparently called golden silk orb-weavers (Nephila) and if you google them you might get more than you bargained for, not least very detailed photos here on WordPress. They are big and have yellow and pink spots. Their webs are often anchored between trees several meters apart and are about one meter in diameter (the webs, the spiders are about 4 cm or so big, including the legs). The anchoring threads of the webs are spun from several thinner ones and if you pluck at them they do not break, they just go ‘twang’. Uh. I could not bring myself to photograph them.

I will leave off now, photos from Kamakura town itself are still to come, though. In the meantime here is my Kamakura photo set on Flickr.

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~ by veronikab on 7 November, 2008.

One Response to “Kamakura part two – Kencho-ji”

  1. I agree the spiders in Japan are super creepy looking and more abundant than any place I have ever seen! My first experience was riding through their webs on a mtn bike. After I getting a spider stuck inside my helmet, I have never rode those trails after the spiders come out in full force, again.

    Wonderful pictures of Kamakura, that was definitely a place that exceeded my expectations.

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