Half-Day Kamakura Day Trip from Tokyo

Escape Tokyo for a day to visit the historic temples and shrines of Kamakura
From US$628 privately
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Tour Details
4.5 hours
Product Type
  • Kotoku-in
  • Hase Temple
  • The Great Buddha of Kamakura
Photos & Highlights
  • Half-day tour of Kamakura led by an expert in Japanese history
  • Gain a better understanding of the importance of Kamakura's historic temples and shrines
Tour Description
The perks and efficiency of Japanese rail transport allow for a range of accessible, deeply engaging day trips from Tokyo. An hour by train from the crush of Tokyo Station is the charming town of Kamakura, home to one of Japan’s most widely recognized religious icons—the 13.35-meter-tall Great Buddha of Kamakura. In this half-day Kamakura Tour, we’ll visit this massive bronze structure as well as some of Kamakura’s other important temples and shrines, such as Hase Temple and Tsurugaoka-Hachimangu Shrine. Depending on the weather, we’ll walk within Kamakura, or take the local electric railway part of the way there.

"What a great day. Must-go-to experience life on the coast!”

From Ancient Temples to Bronzed Buddhas

Once our train arrives in Kamakura, we will head to Hasedera (Hase Temple), home to lovely gardens and a view over the bay. Along the path to the temple’s main buildings, we’ll see hundreds of jizo, statues of the Jizo Bodhisattva who is believed to accompany the souls of deceased children. At this point in the tour, we’ll sit for tea and traditional Japanese snacks to discuss the Jodo sect of Buddhism to which Hasedera belongs.

After Hasadera, we will head over to Kotoku-in, host to the iconic Great Buddha of Kamakura (Kamakura Daibutsu). The bronze statue dates back to 1252 and was initially housed within a temple hall. Unfortunately, typhoons destroyed the temple, and buildings but the Buddha survived unharmed and has been sitting outdoors since 1495. Today, green with age, this is Japan’s second tallest bronze Buddha; the first is at temple Todai-ji in Nara, outside Kyoto (where we also have a Nara Tour). Kotoku-in may be our last stop, unless we manage to keep up the pace--in which case we may be able to fit in one last visit for the day at the Tsurugaoka-Hachimangu Shrine before heading back to Kamakura Station. 

You may, of course, return to Tokyo on the same train as your expert, however, we encourage you stay in Kamakura to have lunch or spend some of the afternoon visiting other attractions.

Take Aways

At the end of our day trip from Tokyo to Kamakura, we will emerge with an enhanced knowledge of this important historical town and gain a better understanding of the relevance of its temples and shrines, as well as have appreciated the serenity and great beauty on display.

If you are using a Japan Rail Pass, please let us know. If you have one, you do not need to purchase a train ticket, and we will remove it from your order.


Where does it start? Where does it end? 
You'll meet near Tokyo Station. The confirmation email will have the exact spot. The tour ends in Kamakura. You can stay in Kamakura and explore on your own, or return to Tokyo with the expert. Your train tickets are round trip, and you can return at any time.

Are train tickets included? 
Yes! You will pay for them ahead of time, and the guide will buy them for you at the station.

Can we arrange a car service instead of the train? 
For this tour, we always take the train. Trains in Japan are faster and more efficient than driving.
Where You'll Start
24 Reviews (4.87)

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Elena was outstanding! She brought a unique blend of both historical context and practical advice about Japan. The trip to Kamakura was long, but Elena was with us all the way, and we learned a ton from being with her. Highly recommend her for future travelers to Tokyo!
Maciej was a fantastic guide and person. Attentive and extremely knowledgeable about so many things. We thoroughly enjoyed spending the day with him and learning about Japanese history and culture. We also enjoyed his photography. Great experience.
I have used Context for about 20 years, whenever I travel abroad. Every time I do I’m happy. You make my experiences special because I interact with knowledgeable locals.