The second part of my exploration of ancient Kamakura is a trip to an Samurai-era graveyard. Mandarado is a large collection of yagura that have been sealed up and lost in time in the hills south of Kamakura. It is also an area that is rumored to be haunted due to it’s strong connection as a place of death.
Kamakura is my favorite city to explore because it still has an atmosphere of ancient Japan (without being overrun by tourism). Many times, I will just go walking with no particular destination in mind and will run into the most unexpected sights. Yesterday, I did just that for the first part of the day. Please enjoy part one of my walk through ancient Kamakura.
Directly across from Yokosuka Naval base is a really nice waterfront park that really comes alive during the month of May where it becomes a beautiful European-style rose garden. It was purposely made in plain view of the Yokosuka Naval Ships and as a setting that looks like it came right out of France in order to honor François Léonce Verny; a French man who helped to modernize Japan and who built Yokosuka’s Naval Arsenal.
If you’ve spend as much time in Kamakura as I have, you are bound to run into a yagura from time to time. A Kamakura yagura is a artificial tomb dug into the rocky cliff sides and they date back to when the city was the capital of Japan. I’ve actually been wanting to explore the other side of Kamakura for a while now. Far from the tourists and tour buses, there are old forests and hills that contain a bit of a reminder of Kamakura’s medieval past and of the samurai.
Evangelion was the first anime I have ever watched and till this day, it remains my favorite anime of all time. So, naturally, when I heard Tokyo 3 was based in the Hakone area I decided to undertake the daunting Evangelion anime pilgrimage a bit at a time. This first venture covers a few of the areas that Shinji went to when he was contemplating leaving Tokyo 3 and his job at Nerv.
During the spring, the Japanese city of Kurihama has a series of hills which are famous for their countless poppies as well as for their Godzilla statue. If you want to go back to your country and say you have seen Godzilla in Japan, then Kurihama is the place to go! ^^;
After my “test of guts” in Jogashima, It was a beautiful day and I didn’t want to go to the base just yet. I have long heard about the Kurihama Flower World but I had no idea what to expect.
Sarushima Island, also known as Monkey Island, is a little known island located approximately 1.7 km from the coast of Yokosuka, Japan. It is the only natural island remaining in Tokyo Bay and had previously been a fortress during the Edo, Meiji, and Showa periods. Please enjoy my exploration of the war ruins and beautiful coasts of Sarushima island.
I have always been somewhat fascinated with World War II and with the military in general so I was bound to pay Yasukuni Shrine a visit someday. Yasukuni shrine is the most controversial shrine in Japan because it houses the spirits of the Japanese who died fighting for the Emperor (including convicted war criminals). The shrine is not only to be visited for it’s unique kami (spirits) but also for the outstanding World War II museum that house many Japanese military artifacts, weapons, and even a few planes.