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Kencho-ji Temple, Kamakura

4.5
#5 of 106 in Historic Sites in Kamakura
Historic Site · Religious Site
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Take in the serenity and artistry at Kencho-ji Temple, a commanding Zen Buddhist temple known for its carefully designed gardens and grand architecture. Completed in 1253 under the command of Emperor Go-Fukakusa, the temple originally boasted 49 subtemples, most of which were lost to fire during the 14th and 15th centuries. As you explore the extensive complex, note the 13th-century temple bell, Chinese juniper trees in the temple garden, and the finely ornamented roofs and walls. The temple welcomes visitors to participate in 40-minute zazen meditation sessions, providing brief instruction on posture and the tenets of Zen Buddhism beforehand (in Japanese). North of the complex, hiking trails lead farther up the hill to an observatory. Plan to visit Kencho-ji Temple during your Kamakura vacation using our convenient Kamakura route planner.
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Kencho-ji Temple reviews

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Google
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TripAdvisor
  • The Kenchoji is one of Kamakura’s most important Zen temples and has many great historic sites and nature spots to offer. From the mysterious Butsuden Buddha Hall, a garden designed by a Zen master... 
    The Kenchoji is one of Kamakura’s most important Zen temples and has many great historic sites and nature spots to offer. From the mysterious Butsuden Buddha Hall, a garden designed by a Zen master...  more »
  • Kencho-ji is one of the 5 big zen temples in Kamakura. It's quite big and very well taken care of. The area is very calm and it's very nice to walk around. In addition to the main temple area, there....  more
    Kencho-ji is one of the 5 big zen temples in Kamakura. It's quite big and very well taken care of. The area is very calm and it's very nice to walk around. In addition to the main temple area, there....  more »
Google
  • Kenchoji is more than a mere tourist attraction, it is an actual monastery and one of the oldest in Japan. Its grounds are large and expansive enough to handle the tourist mob inflow without bothering locals too much, and there are even a couple decent Japanese gardens in back.
  • 500 yen entry, a bit expensive, should be 300 in line with the other templs around. The temples are much older and antique which I like, and there is an optional looong uphill walk at the end to a view of the ocean and Fuji-San if it's not cloudy.

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