Yokohama / Kamakura Half-Day Private Trip with Nationally-Licensed Guide

Enjoy an efficient, half-day walking tour of Yokohama and Kamakura accompanied by a nationally-licensed and experienced multilingual guide! Your guide will introduce both modern and traditional sides of these dynamic and ancient Japanese cities during this half-day tour.

For options to experience both modern and traditional sides of Japan outside of Tokyo, the cities of Yokohama and Kamakura may be the best. Our nationally-licensed and experienced English-speaking guides will help you efficiently spend a half-day walking tour of these areas. Let us know what you would like to experience and we will customize a four-hour tour that’s best for you!

Note*1: Please select your must-see spots from a list in the tour information to create your customized itinerary.
Note*2: The Nationally-licensed Tour Guide-Interpreter certification is issued by the Japanese government requires a good knowledge and understanding of Japanese culture and history.
* Duration: 4 hours
* Starts: Yokohama, Japan
* Trip Category: Cultural & Theme Tours >> Historical & Heritage Tours




Enjoy an efficient, half-day walking tour of Yokohama and Kamakura accompanied by a nationally-licensed and experienced multilingual guide! Your guide will introduce both modern and traditional sides of these dynamic and ancient Japanese cities during this half-day tour.

For options to experience both modern and traditional sides of Japan outside of Tokyo, the cities of Yokohama and Kamakura may be the best. Our nationally-licensed and experienced English-speaking guides will help you efficiently spend a half-day walking tour of these areas. Let us know what you would like to experience and we will customize a four-hour tour that’s best for you!

Note*1: Please select your must-see spots from a list in the tour information to create your customized itinerary.
Note*2: The Nationally-licensed Tour Guide-Interpreter certification is issued by the Japanese government requires a good knowledge and understanding of Japanese culture and history.

Itinerary
This is a typical itinerary for this product

Stop At: Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, 2-1-31 Yukinoshita, Kamakura 248-0005 Kanagawa Prefecture

The shrine is dedicated to Hachiman, the patron god of the Minamoto family and of the samurai in general. The deified spirits of the ancient Emperor Ojin who has been identified with Hachiman, Hime-gami and Empress Jingu are enshrined at Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine.

Duration: 1 hour

Stop At: Kotoku-in (Great Buddha of Kamakura), 4 Chome-2-28 Hase, Kamakura 248-0016 Kanagawa Prefecture

The Great Buddha of Kamakura (鎌倉大仏, Kamakura Daibutsu) is a bronze statue of Amida Buddha, which stands on the grounds of Kotokuin Temple. With a height of 11.4 meters, it has long been the second tallest bronze Buddha statue in Japan, surpassed only by the statue in Nara’s Todaiji Temple and some recent creations.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Hase-dera Temple, 3-11-2 Hase, Kamakura 248-0016 Kanagawa Prefecture

Hasedera (長谷寺) is a temple of the Jodo sect, famous for its eleven-headed statue of Kannon, the goddess of mercy. The 9.18 meter tall, gilded wooden statue is regarded as one of the largest wooden sculpture in Japan and can be viewed in the temple’s main building, the Kannon-do Hall

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Hokokuji Temple (Takedera Temple), 2-7-4 Jomyoji, Kamakura 248-0003 Kanagawa Prefecture

Hokokuji Temple is best known for the beautiful, small bamboo grove found behind the temple’s main hall, which lies thick with over 2000 dark green bamboo stalks. A few narrow pathways lead through the bamboo to a tea house where, for a small fee, you can sit and enjoy a cup of matcha tea while enjoying views into the bamboo grove. Also located behind the temple are a series of shallow caves carved into the hillsides, which are believed to hold the ashes of some of the later Ashikaga lords.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Kamakura Hiking Trails, Kamakura Kanagawa Prefecture

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.

Duration: 1 hour

Stop At: Enoshima Island, Enoshima, Fujisawa 251-0036 Kanagawa Prefecture

Only a short train ride west of Kamakura, Enoshima (江の島) is a pleasantly touristy island just off the coast but connected by bridge with the mainland. The island offers a variety of attractions, including a shrine, park, observation tower and caves. Views of Mount Fuji can be enjoyed on days with good visibility.

Enoshima is divided into a yacht harbor accessible to motorized traffic and a forested hill which can only be explored on foot (and paid escalators) and contains most of the sights. Several shrine buildings, collectively known as Enoshima Shrine, are found around the island and are dedicated to Benten, a popular goddess of good fortune, wealth, music and knowledge. Benten is believed to have created Enoshima before subduing a five headed dragon that had been terrorizing the area.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Engaku-ji Temple, 409 Yamanochi, Kamakura 247-0062 Kanagawa Prefecture

ngakuji (円覚寺) is one of the leading Zen temples in Eastern Japan and the number two of Kamakura’s five great Zen temples. Engakuji was founded by the ruling regent Hojo Tokimune in the year 1282, one year after the second invasion attempt by the Mongols had been reverted. One purpose of the new temple was to pay respect to the fallen Japanese and Mongolian soldiers.

Engakuji is built into the slopes of Kita-Kamakura’s forested hills. The first main structure encountered upon entering the temple grounds is the Sanmon main gate, which dates from 1783. Behind it stands the temple’s main hall, the Butsuden, which displays a wooden statue of the Shaka Buddha. The Butsuden was rebuilt relatively recently in 1964 after the former building was lost in an earthquake.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Kencho-ji Temple, 8 Yamanouchi, Kamakura 247-0062 Kanagawa Prefecture

Kenchoji (建長寺, Kenchōji) is the number one of Kamakura’s five great Zen temples. The oldest Zen temple in Kamakura, Kenchoji was founded by the ruling regent Hojo Tokiyori in 1253 during the Kencho Era after which it was named. Its first head priest was Rankei Doryu, a Zen priest from China.

Although considerably smaller than during its heydays, Kenchoji still consists of a large number of temple buildings and subtemples, and stretches from the entrance gate at the bottom of the valley far into the forested hills behind. After passing through the Sanmon main gate, visitors will see Kenchoji’s temple bell (Bonsho), designated a national treasure, on their right.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Zeniarai Benzaiten Shrine, 2-chōme-25-16 Sasuke, Kamakura, Kanagawa 248-0017, Japan

Zeniarai Benten Shrine (銭洗弁天) is a popular shrine in western Kamakura, which people visit to wash their money (zeniarai means “coin washing”). It is said that money washed in the shrine’s spring, will double.

Minamoto Yoritomo, the founder of the Kamakura government, ordered the shrine’s construction after a god appeared in his dream and recommended him to build the shrine in order to bring peace to the country. Because the dream occurred on the day of the snake, in the month of the snake of the year of the snake, the shrine was later also dedicated to Benten, a Buddhist goddess associated with snakes.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Meigetsuin (Hydrangea Temple), 189 Yamanochi, Kamakura 247-0062 Kanagawa Prefecture

Meigetsuin Temple (明月院) is a temple of the Rinzai Zen Sect founded in 1160 in Kamakura. It is also known as Ajisaidera (“Hydrangea Temple”) because hydrangea bloom in abundance on the temple grounds during the rainy season around June. 95% of the hydrangea here are of the Hime Ajisai (“Princess Hydrangea”) variety; they are thus named because of their pretty blue colors.

The temple was originally a repose built by a son in memory of his father who had died in the struggle for power between the Taira and Minamoto clans in the late Heian Period. It later became part of a larger temple complex called Zenkoji, which was abolished during anti-Buddhist movements soon after the Meiji Restoration, leaving only Meigetsuin to remain as an individual temple today.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Ankokuronji Temple, 4-4-18 Omachi, Kamakura 248-0007 Kanagawa Prefecture

Ankokuronji (安国論寺) is one of several temples of the Nichiren sect of Japanese Buddhism along the hills in the southeast of Kamakura. Nichiren himself founded Ankokuronji around 1253 when he first came to Kamakura, and he is said to have lived at the temple for several years.

Visitors can walk along a short hiking trail through the wooded hills around the temple buildings. A nice view of the city of Kamakura can be enjoyed underway. Some of the trail’s passages are quite steep and should only be explored with good walking shoes and during dry weather.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Jomyo-ji Temple, 3-8-31 Jomyoji, Kamakura 248-0003 Kanagawa Prefecture

Jomyoji Temple (浄妙寺, Jōmyōji) is a Zen temple in the hills of eastern Kamakura. Ranked fifth among the five great Zen temples of Kamakura, Jomyoji was founded by the influential Ashikaga family and at its peak was made up of seven buildings and several pagodas. Over the centuries, however, many of the structures were destroyed by fire, and only its historic main hall, reception hall, main gate and warehouse remain today. The main hall sits at the end of a garden and houses a statue of Shaka Nyorai, the historical Buddha.

Jomyoji Temple also has a restored teahouse where visitors can sit and enjoy a cup of tea for a small fee while enjoying the view of a nice dry garden. On the hillside behind the main hall is the temple’s spacious cemetery, while a path leads up the hill to a small western-style restaurant. The restaurant is operated by the temple and offers good views out over Kamakura from its patio.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Zuisenji, 710 Nikaido, Kamakura 248-0002 Kanagawa Prefecture

Zuisenji (瑞泉寺) is a beautiful Zen temple in the far east of Kamakura, in the back of a narrow valley and surrounded by wooded hills. It is a branch temple of the Engakuji Temple.

Zuisenji was founded by Muso Kokushi, a leading Zen master of his time and one of Japan’s most famous garden designers. The temple is known for its pure Zen rock garden behind the temple’s main hall, designed by Muso himself. The temple furthermore attracts with its many flowers and blooming trees in the other parts of the temple grounds, including a large number of plum trees.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Myohonji Temple, 1-15-1 Omachi, Kamakura 248-0007 Kanagawa Prefecture

Myohonji (妙本寺, Myōhonji) is one of several temples of the Nichiren sect of Japanese Buddhism along the southeastern hills of Kamakura. The temple was founded by Hiki Yoshimoto in 1260, and features a statue of Nichiren to the left of the main hall.

The temple is connected via the Gionyama hiking trail with some other nearby temples and a shrine. It leads through the wooded hills of Kamakura, and should be explored only with good walking shoes and during dry weather, because there are a few steep and rough passages.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Jochiji Temple, 1402 Yamanouchi, Kamakura 247-0062 Kanagawa Prefecture

Jochiji (浄智寺, Jōchiji) is the number four of Kamakura’s five great Zen temples. It is a branch temple of the Engakuji school of the Rinzai sect of Zen Buddhism. Its head temple, the Engakuji Temple, stands just a few hundred meters away on the opposite side of the railway tracks.

Jochiji was founded in 1283 by members of the ruling Hojo family on the occasion of the premature death of a son. Once a large temple complex with many buildings and subtemples, Jochiji is now small and calm. In its main hall, the Dongeden, the temple’s main object of worship, a Buddhist trinity of the Amida Buddha, Shaka Buddha and Miroku Buddha, is displayed.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Tokeiji Temple, 1367 Yamanouchi, Kamakura 247-0062 Kanagawa Prefecture

Tokeiji (東慶寺, Tōkeiji) is a small branch temple of the Engakuji school within the Rinzai sect of Zen Buddhism. Its head temple, the Engakuji Temple, stands just a few hundred meters away on the opposite side of the railway tracks.

Tokeiji was founded by the wife of the regent Hojo Tokimune in 1285 after Tokimune had died at a young age. Until the end of the Edo Period, the temple served as a shelter for women who suffered abuse by their husbands and sought a divorce. An official divorce could be attained by staying at the temple for three years.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Jufukuji Temple, 1-17-7 Ogigayatsu, Kamakura 248-0011 Kanagawa Prefecture

Jufukuji Temple (寿福寺) is the number three of Kamakura’s five great Zen temples. It is a branch temple of the Rinzai sect’s Kenchoji school.

Jufukuji was established by the order of Minamoto Yoritomo’s wife Masako after her husband had passed away. Its founding priest was none other than Eisai, the man responsible for introducing Zen Buddhism into Japan. Besides the often photographed pathway that leads towards the temple, Jufukuji is not open to the public.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Sankeien Gardens, 58-1 Hommoku Sannotani, Naka-Ku, Yokohama 231-0824 Kanagawa Prefecture

Sankeien (三溪園) is a spacious Japanese style garden in southern Yokohama which exhibits a number of historic buildings from across Japan. There is a pond, small rivers, flowers and wonderful scrolling trails that make you think you are in Kyoto rather than Yokohama.

The garden was built by Hara Sankei and opened to the public in 1904. Among the historic buildings exhibited in the park are an elegant daimyo (feudal lord) residence, several tea houses and the main hall and three storied pagoda of Kyoto’s old Tomyoji Temple.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Yokohama Minato Mirai 21, Minatomirai, Nishi, Yokohama Kanagawa Prefecture

Minato Mirai 21 (みなとみらい 21) is a seaside urban area in central Yokohama whose name means “harbor of the future”. It has many large high-rises, including the Landmark Tower, which was Japan’s tallest building from 1993 until 2014. The area was a large shipyard until the 1980s, when development began to turn it into a new city center.

Minato Mirai is blessed with a great location along the water and has a wealth of attractions. Visitors to the area will be able to find shopping centers, hotels, a convention center, an amusement park, a relaxation center with hot spring baths, museums and park space.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Yokohama Chinatown, 118-2 Yamashitacho, Naka-Ku, Yokohama 231-0023 Kanagawa Prefecture

Yokohama Chinatown (横浜中華街, Yokohama Chūkagai) is Japan’s largest Chinatown, located in central Yokohama. A large number of Chinese stores and restaurants can be found in the narrow and colorful streets of Chinatown. Various events and festivals such as Chinese New Year around the beginning of February are also held at Chinatown.

Yokohama Chinatown quickly developed, after the port of Yokohama had been one of the first Japanese ports to be opened to foreign trade in 1859. It became the residence of the many Chinese traders who settled down in the city. Today, there are more businesses than actual residents living in the area.

Four colorful gates stand at the entrances to Chinatown, and five more gates can be found within. The Kanteibyo is a gaudily colored temple in the center of Chinatown. Constructed in 1873 by Chinese residents, it is dedicated to the Chinese god of good business and prosperity.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Yokohama Zoo ”Zoorasia”, 1175-1 Kami-Shirane-cho, Yokohama 241-0001 Kanagawa Prefecture

Zoorasia (ズーラシア) is one of Japan’s newest, largest and best kept zoos. The zoo was established in 1999, and since then has been operating under the themes of “Symbiosis of Life” and “Harmony with Nature”. The animals are generally kept in spacious areas that mimic their natural habitat to a degree that is not usually seen in Japanese zoos.

The animal exhibitions of Zoorasia are spread out amongst eight ecological areas: Asian Tropical Forest, Subarctic Forest, Oceanian Grassland, Central Asian Highland, Japanese Countryside, Amazon Jungle, African Tropical Rainforest and African Savannah. Among the zoo’s highlights are the elephants, polar bears, black bears, okapi and proboscis monkeys. There are also a few restaurants and cafes, as well as nature trails and recreation areas for kids.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Cup Noodles Museum Yokohama, 2-3-4 Shinko, Naka-Ku, Yokohama 231-0001 Kanagawa Prefecture

The Cup Noodles Museum (also known as the 安藤百福発明記念館, Andō Momofuku Hatsumei Kinenkan) is a fun and interactive museum in Yokohama’s Minato Mirai District that shows the history of instant ramen noodles using a combination of whimsical exhibits and hands on workshops. It was opened by the Nissin Food company, whose founder invented instant ramen noodles in 1958 as a fast and convenient food. It is the second cup noodles museum to open in Japan; the first is the Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum in Osaka.

The museum shows a short film introducing the history of instant noodles, together with unconventional exhibits such as a replica of the shed where instant noodles were invented and a visual timeline of instant noodle products from around the world. A small collection of modern art pieces are also on display, and are meant to represent Nissin’s approach to creating new and innovative products, some of which include cup noodles (instant ramen in a styrofoam cup) and space ramen (for astronauts).

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Motomachi Park, 1-77-4 Motomachi, Naka-Ku, Yokohama 231-0861 Kanagawa Prefecture

For most of the 250 years of the Edo Period (1603-1867), the rulers of Japan prohibited almost all interactions with foreign countries. When the period of isolation finally ended in the 1850s, Yokohama was one of only a few port towns where foreign traders, looking to profit from the newly opened country, were permitted to reside. While the Chinese made themselves a Chinatown, Westerners took up in the hills of the Yamate area, which was also called “The Bluff”.

The Yamate area (山手) retains a number of sites relating to its history as the main residential district of Westerners in Yokohama. However, because of the Great Kanto Earthquake, few of them predate 1923. Present day Yamate is still for the most part a hilly residential area with some pleasant parks. As visitors travel between Yamate’s sightseeing spots, they will see by the international schools and churches that the presence of Western residents continues to this day.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Yamate 234ban Residence, 234-1 Yamatecho, Naka-ku Motomachi Park, Yokohama 231-0862 Kanagawa Prefecture

For most of the 250 years of the Edo Period (1603-1867), the rulers of Japan prohibited almost all interactions with foreign countries. When the period of isolation finally ended in the 1850s, Yokohama was one of only a few port towns where foreign traders, looking to profit from the newly opened country, were permitted to reside. While the Chinese made themselves a Chinatown, Westerners took up in the hills of the Yamate area, which was also called “The Bluff”.

The Yamate area (山手) retains a number of sites relating to its history as the main residential district of Westerners in Yokohama. However, because of the Great Kanto Earthquake, few of them predate 1923. Present day Yamate is still for the most part a hilly residential area with some pleasant parks. As visitors travel between Yamate’s sightseeing spots, they will see by the international schools and churches that the presence of Western residents continues to this day.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Shinyokohama Ramen Museum, 2-14-21 Shin-Yokohama, Kohoku-ku, Yokohama 222-0033 Kanagawa Prefecture

The Shinyokohama Raumen Museum (新横浜ラーメン博物館, Shin Yokohama Ra-men Hakubutsukan) is a unique museum about ramen, a very popular Japanese noodle dish which was originally introduced from China.

In a gallery on the first floor, the Ramen Museum presents the history of ramen noodles in Japan, including the big success of instant ramen. It displays the variety of noodles, soups, toppings and bowls used across Japan, and shows how the noodles are made.

On the two basement floors, visitors can explore a 1:1 replica of some streets and houses of Shitamachi, the old town of Tokyo, of around the year 1958, when the popularity of ramen was rapidly increasing. Nine ramen restaurants can be found there, each featuring a ramen dish from a different region of Japan.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Yamashita Park, 279 Yamashitacho, Naka-ku, Yokohama 231-0023 Kanagawa Prefecture

Yamashita Park (山下公園, Yamashita Kōen) is a public park that stretches about 750 meters along Yokohama’s waterfront. The park is about a hundred meters wide, and consists mostly of open green space. It was constructed after the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923.

Strolling through Yamashita Park, it is hard to miss the massive ocean liner in the water beside the promenade. The ship is called the Hikawa Maru, and was first put into service in 1930 along the Yokohama-Vancouver/Seattle line. The ship had first-class cabins that attracted the likes of the imperial family and Charlie Chaplin for the transpacific journey. In 1960, after 30 years at sea, the ship was retired. It now serves as a museum, with informative displays and interiors in the style of the 1930s.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: Osanbashi Yokohama International Passenger Terminal, 1-1-4 Kaigandori, Naka-Ku, Yokohama 231-0002 Kanagawa Prefecture

The Osanbashi International Passenger Terminal (大さん橋国際客船ターミナル, Ōsanbashi Kokusai Kyakusen Terminal), also known as Osanbashi Pier, is located between Minato Mirai and Yamashita Park. It is where international cruise ships dock when they visit Yokohama. The 400 meter pier has walkways and green spaces that are open to the general public, making Osanbashi Pier an interesting attraction even for travelers not boarding a ship.

The pier was originally built in 1894, but was reconstructed in 2002 as a passenger terminal. Its bold new design incorporates grass and floor boards that mimic rolling waves. The pier is one of Yokohama’s best spots for a walk, and for unobstructed views of the Minato Mirai skyline. Below the walking area there are boarding facilities, shops, restaurants and a hall for small exhibitions and events.

Duration: 30 minutes