New isn’t always the word that comes to mind when thinking of Japan’s ancient capital of Kamakura. Like it was in its 13th-century heyday, this cultural oasis on Sagami Bay remains a hub for what’s happening in the Shonan area. Here are just a few of the new local haunts and activities bringing life to Kamakura and the surrounding area in February 2021.
Plum Blossoms at Kaizoji Temple
As we enter the last few weeks of February, the air of spring gradually starts to brighten many of the temples of Kamakura with beautiful spring blooms. Quietly tucked away north of Kamakura, Kaizoji is a lesser known flower temple founded during the 13th century. Throughout the entire year, the garden of Kaizoji is splendidly dotted with seasonal blooms and during mid-February to early March, plum blossoms add spring colors to the temple’s subtle aesthetics of Kamakura Buddhism.
Just a 3-minute walk from Koshigoe Station on the Enoshima electric line, Kamakura Matsubara an Ao is an authentic Japanese soba restaurant opened in August 2020. The restaurant is adjacent to the brand new hotel Ao, opening soon this year. Kamakura Matsubara an Ao is an affiliate to the soba restaurant, Matsubara An, so here you are guaranteed to enjoy some of the finest serve of soba found around.
Soba is made fresh at the restaurant and each accompaniment is prepared from carefully selected local ingredients. The specially assorted seasonal tempura brings out the best of your soba, so make sure to indulge in this gastronomic delight when you make your visit.
Also, the restaurant boasts of its selections of Japanese sake, wine and local craft beer that are selected to marry with fresh soba. The restaurant is located in a setting overlooking Koshigoe beach, so a romantic view of Enoshima is another enticing feature to look forward to.
Kamakura Matsubara an Ao is closed until February 21 due to reconstruction work, so make sure to plan your visit after this date.
When: 11:00–20:00 (times subject to change)
As a child, have you ever been told to hush in a city library, but wished you could read your book out aloud to your heart’s content? The Umi to Yama no Kodomo Tosyokan is a library on wheels, which makes your inner held childhood dreams come true.
The library bus delivers their collection of storybooks in and around Kamakura and Hayama offering an exciting reading experience out in nature, where no one can tell you to keep it down. In Kamakura, the magic bus is parked in an open space located in Omachi on every first and third Tuesday of the month from 15:30-16:30. As for Hayama, you’ll find them at the parking lot of Kodomo no tame no Haisya-san, every second and fourth Friday of the month from 15:30-16:30.
For both venues the bus is open for anyone to pop in during their opening hours. The books are primarily in Japanese, but English books are gradually making the shelf. Also, the library books are available for you to borrow, but for starters, make sure to bring a personal ID with you for administrative purposes.
While the pandemic of Covid-19 continues to afflicting the nation, many businesses are inclined to explore new ways of working outside the office. Just opened on January 4, 2021, GOOD WORKING ZAIMOKUZA, located inside of the Zaimokuza terrace, offers a solution for those striving to optimize this critical situation
The co-working space aims to offer a remote work experience through utilizing their shared work space and office facilities located just in front of Zaimokuza Beach. This setting allows you to participate in both work and play. If you ever feel like procrastinating, you can simply switch off from work and hop down to the beach or recharge at adjacent cafés, yoga studio and restaurants in order to be more productive for the rest of the day.
When: 10:00–18:00 or 9:00–20:00 (depending on plan)
Along with GOOD WORKING ZAIMOKUZA, the trendy B&B, Good Morning Zaimokuza, relocated inside the Zaimokuza terrace on December 30, 2020.
The accommodation offers a relaxing stay in a cozy room which all comes with a stunner ocean view. Above all, the establishment is affiliated with GOOD WORKING ZAIMOKUZA, so if you are looking for a workcation destination this place is worth consideration.
Good Morning Zaimokuza is also known for their scrumptious meal and their famous breakfast comprised of a good mix of Japanese deli is particularly popular with their guests and even from locals who casually drop in for this in the morning.
Information may unexpectedly change, so please check each venue’s website before venturing out. Stay safe and informed with our latest Covid-19 news.