Kamakura is surrounded by the ocean in the south and by wooded hills in all other directions. Attractive hiking trails lead through the woods along these hills and connect various atmospheric temples. They are a great way to travel between some of Kamakura's sights. Many of the trails do not take long to complete - typically between 30 to 90 minutes - and allow visitors to enjoy a mix of nature and cultural sights.

Western Hills

The Daibutsu Hiking Course connects Jochiji Temple in Kita-Kamakura with the Great Buddha (Daibutsu) in the west of the city. The Zeniarai Benten and the Genjiyama public park with a statue of Minamoto Yoritomo can be found underway. It takes about 60-90 minutes to complete the entire trail.

Northern Hills

The Tenen Hiking Course connects Kenchoji Temple in Kita-Kamakura with Zuisenji Temple in the east of the city, leading mostly along the ridge of the hills. The whole trail takes about 60-90 minutes to complete, and hikers can find several tomb caves (yagura) along their way. The trail can also be accessed through the Shishimai Valley, which is a popular spot for autumn colors in early December.

Eastern Hills

The Gionyama Hiking Course connects Yagumo Shrine with the Harakiri Yagura, a cave tomb where the last Hojo regent is said to have committed ritual suicide. Some nice views of the city can be enjoyed underway. The trail is shorter than the other two, taking about 30 minutes to complete.

The trails are not paved and are narrow and steep at times. It is recommended to explore them only during dry weather and with good walking shoes.

Getting there and around