In the 13th Century, Lady Inada no Tsubone and a monk called Joko managed to raise funds to build a great statue of Buddha. A... More
Jourenji Temple (Tokyo Daibutsu)
In the 13th Century, Lady Inada no Tsubone and a monk called Joko managed to raise funds to build a great statue of Buddha. After several mishaps with wooden statues, the bronze casting crafted by Goremon Ono was finished in 1252. Now gracefully sitting outside this temple, the serene Buddha was formerly housed in the main building which was disastrously swept away by a tidal wave in 1495.
The Daibutsu is so cool. It's like stepping back in time, to the 1200's! You even get to walk around inside of it. You do have to pay to get in, but only a couple of dollars. Then you have to pay again if you want to go inside the daibutsu (I think $.50). It's worth the short train ride from Yokohama, because there are so many shops and temples in the Kamakura area. You can spend most of your day there. I went for New Year's so it was extra busy and none of the flowers were in blume. There's a gift shop so you can take a mini-daibutsu home with you.
The train ride only takes about 1/2 hour traveling from Tokyo. Once you arrive at the Kotoku-in Temple, you first pass main entrance where you pay the entrance fee (Daibutsu cannot be seen from the street due to its proximity within the Temple).
Once inside, you are free to walk around the grounds which are quite beautiful and nicely landscaped. When you get your first glance of Daibutsu (approximately 25 feet from the main entrance) the sheer size will immediately astound you; it's about as tall as a three story building! You will most assuredly find yourself along with many other visitors glazing at and walking around the statue in awe.
For a small additional fee (40 yen) you can go into the center of Daibutsu and have a look around (albeit it's a bit dark inside with some natural lighting coming in from above). One of the things that struck me was the appearance of the interior of the statue seemed to be textured, but was amazingly smooth (like marble).
Outside there are some gift shops where you can purchase souvenirs and a covered area where you can sit and view Daibutsu.
Definitely take the time to come see this magnificent statue if the opportunity is there.
The trip to Kamakura is worthwhile. For most people the highlight of Kamakura is the Daibutsu. With the well manicured grounds of Kotokuin temple and the impressive size and detail of the Great Buddha it's easy to understand why. However, Kamakura has a few more interesting and less publicized sights such as Zeniarai Benten.
I am named Clifton Marple. People call me Cliff Maple and it makes me cry. What makesmyday is when I go home to my boyfrieend, Tim. He is the love of my life. Also, Ryan, Matt, and little guy call me fat and it makes my cry. I cryed all day tooday in shop class and they laughed at me.