Situated in the northern part of Kamakura basks the Tenen Hiking Trail (pronounced as Ten-en, not Te-nen) that connects the Zuisenji Temple to the Kenchoji Temple in Kita-Kamakura Station. Here also lies the highest mountain in Yokohama City, Mt. Ohira, whose boundary extends to Kamakura. The hiking course takes around 2 to 2.5 hours to complete and is a highly recommended way to get up close to Kamakura’s green hills and wildlife surrounded by the ocean.
Kamakura travel guides suggest that the Tenen Hiking Course should start from Kita-Kamakura Station and end in Kamakura-Gu Shrine, but we did a slight variation. We started at the Kamakura-Gu Shrine and planned to exit at the Kenchoji Temple in Kita-Kamakura Station.
However, that didn’t happen. Our hike ended at another entrance of Tenen trail near Kamakura-Gu. Obviously, we got lost. But no worries, here’s the real deal to avoid the same mistake we made.
From Kamakura Station, ride the bus at the No. 4 stand and get off at Kamakura-Gu (last stop). The bus fare is 180 yen and it takes about 10 minutes or less depending on the traffic. Once you arrive, you’ll see the Kamakura-Gu Shrine.
Facing the Kamakura-Gu Shrine, go to your right and follow the path straight up a hill. You’ll pass a tennis court on your left. Go on until you see the signage for Zuisenji Temple and Tenen Hiking Trail. If it’s your first time, I recommend exploring Zuisenji Temple before your hike. The admission fee is 300 yen.
The temple is exceptionally beautiful in the spring due to the abundance of cherry blossom trees surrounding the area. After exploring, go back outside Zuisenji Temple and follow the signage leading towards Tenen Hiking Trail or this sign 天園, with a narrow path entrance, to begin your hike.
Photos of Zuisenji Temple
The Tenen Hiking Trail is part of the Kanagawa Wildlife Protection Area. Ascend the stairs to start the hike. After a few steps, you’ll get a curious view of a Japanese cemetery on your left deep within the forest. The atmosphere in this hiking trail is different from the others I’ve been to.
It was very quiet and resembled a rainforest with its thick green foliage, wildflowers, vines, ferns, and bamboos. Watch out for interesting stone statues along the way that’s also unique to Kamakura hiking trails. Once you reach the restaurant, you’re halfway through.
The signage for Tenen Hiking Trail becomes quite confusing from this point on, and it was the main reason we got lost and ended up in another entrance near Zuisenji Temple.
To avoid making the same mistake, the next thing you need to look for is the signage leading to Kenchoji Temple, which should lead you toward the end of the trail near Kita-Kamakura Station. This was a truly epic fail hike for us, but next time, we’ll make sure to exit at Kenchoji Temple.
Husband teased that there were only two kind of beautiful flowers in the forest, the wild ones and me. HAHA.
Tenen Hiking Trail is a beautiful hike right in the middle of Kamakura’s lush forest. The trail can get crowded during autumn when all the leaves are very red, mesmerizes the travelers and invites more hikers.