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Kenchoji Temple

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Address: 8 Yamanouchi, Kamakura 247-0062, Kanagawa Prefecture
Name/address in local language
Phone Number: +81 467-22-0981

Founded in 1253 by a Chinese priest, this temple, notable for its bell (a...

Founded in 1253 by a Chinese priest, this temple, notable for its bell (a national treasure) and Zen garden, was the first Zen temple in the city and is ranked number one of the city's five most powerful temples.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 36
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stunning powerhouse of Zen

This is one of the largest Zen Buddhist temples in Kamakura, in Kita Kamakura, not far from the station. It has a long and illustrious history, and a collection of buildings, some... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
Oxford, United Kingdom

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271 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 61: English reviews
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
190 reviews
99 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

This is one of the largest Zen Buddhist temples in Kamakura, in Kita Kamakura, not far from the station. It has a long and illustrious history, and a collection of buildings, some of which were transported from other parts of japan and rebuilt here. There is a lot to see here: stunning, powerful buildings, serene Buddhist images and beautiful gardens.... More 

Thank Dave_Cowley_Road
Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan
Level Contributor
54 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I don't know how I missed this- frequently I go to Kamakura but I had never been here before. This is the first Zen Temple in Kamakura and Japan (I believe,) which makes it all the more amazing. The grounds are GIGANTIC and there are many different buildings. We spent about 3 hours going through as much as we could... More 

1 Thank Korinirin
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

Kenchoji Temple is a quiet oasis for city travelers. I love the quiet scenery inside the temple. The temple offers you the opportunity to meditate, to relax and learn about the history of Kamakura.

Thank May W
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2016

If you are interested in zazen they offer a 40 minute session at the temple. Before is a simple instruction in the posture and after there is a short explanation of zen buddhism. Be aware that there is not English spoken, at least, not on the day I was there. But it is very beautiful and worthwhile even so.

1 Thank Lily T
Breda, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
81 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2016 via mobile

The temple is quite interesting, the best parts are a big bell at the entrance, a gate with golden decorations. The gem is at the end of the path where you climb up to have a 360 degrees of the area; if it is a clear day you can see mount Fuji.

1 Thank BP_EatLover
Level Contributor
386 reviews
242 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 178 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2016

This is a large and beautiful temple. There are many buildings in the large gardens. Lots of information is given about the history and use of each building. You could easily spend a few hours here.

1 Thank J L
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
25 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 24, 2016

Very grand, impressive temple. The art of the roof and walls inside the temples are impressiveI saw this temple as it was the start of the Tenen Hiking trail which observation platform (very worth going up toas it has awesome views of Kamakura).

1 Thank Temma C
Level Contributor
229 reviews
128 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2016

This less popular temple has nice buildings but mostly the walk behind the temple up is worth it. Great for the green views and view of the sea.

Thank Mish_H50
Warsaw, Poland
Level Contributor
293 reviews
196 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 212 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2016

the Temple is actually a complex of many buildings to visit and explore, there is a fee to enter, but it is worth the money

2 Thank Piotr M
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
476 reviews
122 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 469 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2016

I feel almost ashamed that I was not aware of this place when I planned our visit to Kamakura. We came to see the obvious sights, primarily the Great Buddha (Kotokuin), the famous Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, and the Hasadera Kannon Temple. At the information kiosk in the Kamakura station, on requesting a map and directions, the very helpful and informative... More 

1 Thank Rick049

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