A Perfect Guide of Myohonji in Kamakura, Japan

Easily accessible and 10 minutes on foot from Kamakura Station, Myohonji Temple. Despite being close to the train station, the temple is surrounded both by beautiful cedar trees and a serene silence. In the precinct of the temple, there are the Nitenmon and the Shoshido, the largest wooden buildings in Kamakura, as well as many beautiful leaves in autumn. Outline of Myohonji Temple’s Highlights. We will now introduce Myohonji Temple’s seasonal flowers. 

About Myohonji Temple

Myohonji Temple is the oldest Nichiren Buddhist temple opened by Nichiren Saints. Originally, it was a place of residence of a member of the Kamakura Shogunate. After the death of Minamoto Yoritomo, the first general of the Kamakura Shogunate, the Hojo and Hiki clans battled for leadership, and the Hiki clan was destroyed by Hojo rule. It is said that surviving member Hiki Yoshimoto built it the temple to console the souls of his ancestors. Passing through the entrance to the grounds and the main gate, the temple is on the left hand side. Visitors will also find the study hall, the main hall, the bell tower, and the front facade in this area. In addition, cedar trees are lined along the approach, and at the top of the stone steps, there is the Nitenmon, a vermillion-coated gate. 

Highlights of Myohonji Temple

Soshido (a hall commemorating the founder) located in the depths of the temple grounds. The Nichiren founders are enshrined in the hall, with Nichirou on the right and Nichirin on the left. It was built in the Tenpo period, about 170 years ago, and is said to be the largest wooden frame in Kamakura, along with the Buddhist Hall at Kenchoji Temple.

Another highlight, the vermillion colored gate called Nitenmon, has a large maple on the left side of the gate, and the fall foliage and fresh green season are wonderful.

There are various sculptures on the gate, but the main attraction is the colorful dragon sculpture in the center. Facing the Founder’s Hall, there is a statue of Jikokuten on the right and of Tamonten on the left, both ready to step on evil spirits and protect Buddhist Law. 

Seasonal Flowers of Myohonji

Photo provided by(all):Kamakura City Tourist Association

A short walk from Kamakura Station, Myohonji is full of nature and seasonal flowers bloom throughout the year. In spring, there is only one Yoshino cherry tree on the temple grounds, but as soon as the cherry blossoms fall, the beautiful Kaidou (Hall crabapple) in front of the Founder’s Hall blooms. The fresh greenery is beautiful in early summer, and the leaves turn a beautiful color in the autumn. The stunning maple and ginkgo trees in front of the Nitenmon are designated as a natural monument in Kamakura. Viewing the autumn leaves from the edge of the Founder’s Hall is also highly recommended. To see this seasonal sight, it is best to plan your visit around the beginning of December. 

Access to Myohonji Temple

After getting off at JR Kamakura station, walk along the main street, Wakamiya Oji heading toward Zushi, turn left, and when you are in front of Honkakuji, go up the long slope.It is about 8 minutes on foot from Kamakura station.

Spot Information

  • Spot name: Myohonji Temple
  • Street Address: 248- 0007 Omachi, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture 15-1
  • Ticket: Donation-based
  • Time: Any time on the grounds
  • Holiday: Entry any time on the grounds