Kamakura is a city found in Japan which is about 50 kilometres south of the capital city Tokyo. Kamakura was made a political centre in the year 1192 and was effective for over a century under the rule of Minamoto and Hojo regents. However, in the 14th century, Kyoto established a successor called Muramachi who led to the decline of Kamakura political centre. Today, Kamakura has remained a touristic destination with shrines, temples and areas that offer Zen meditation to remind you of the city’s past character. It also prides itself of its authentic cuisines especially their seafood specialization usually fished from the ocean nearby as well as their tea ceremony.
Kamakura has many highlights and places to see as well as activities to engage in with a conducive weather pattern throughout the year. The city is sometimes said to be so congested which makes it appropriate to use a bike to manoeuvre and utilize your time as well as your stay. The good news is, there are bikes for all including special gents, ladies and kids
Why is cycling the best way to explore the city
The opportunity to see more in less time
Once you reach Kamakura from the airport or train station you can rent a bike if you want to sightsee and explore more. Off course you will have an itinerary if you came for the tour through the tour packages and if you walk you may end up seeing very little while if you ride you will spend lesser time and see more living you in awe. The area terrain is also appropriate for bicycle lovers.
The conducive temperature
Unlike other areas, Kamakura is said to have gentle weather which means you don’t expect to have extreme weather conditions that make it inappropriate to ride during the day. There are also many rental bicycle companies that aim at making everything as comfortable for your ride which means that most companies will give you a weighted cushion to use when the hot afternoon sun hits you.
The allowed frequent stops
Biking offers you the luxury to stop and engage in photography sessions at Komachi Street, Hase area where you will see the greatest Buddha or Kita-Kamakura. If you decide to hike in the temples you will have sessions to take photos.
Note that, you don’t need to be afraid to stop and take personal photos on areas that please your eyes.
Getting lost is fun
This is where you cycle with no end destination in mind so you don’t have to worry about finding a shrine/temple in Kamakura. It’s adventurous to see places you didn’t anticipate to. Therefore, if you really want to enjoy your trip, get off the scheduled plan and ride in the city to the rough road and other places that were not in the itinerary.
Consider these points if you want to explore more while getting lost
- Wear your appropriate clothing and have a bike that is safe and well maintained with a comfortable seat.
- When you set on a trip just follow your instincts you will be led to the most amazing place.
- Ask relevant questions and stay open and relaxed to enjoy new sites.
- Be aware of your surrounding but trust that most neighbourhoods are known to be safe.
- Use your maps to note down all the discoveries you make as you point down your routes.
- Stop and take photos at your most exciting destination.
You can sample their local refreshments
You see, you can sample Kamakura’s cold beverage found in various temple shops. These may include water or any another kind of fizzy drink that will definitely quench your thirst. Stopping at secluded destination will give you the cooling effect that your body may need.
Take your time
You don’t need to be in a hurry, just take your time especially after taking your lunch and during the lunch break. It’s during lunch hour that the sun is normally hottest which makes it advisable to get into your air-con room, take a shower and relax as you rehydrate your body.
Always take a stop after a few hours of cycling and chill out because you will need to be rejuvenated once you resume the ride later in the day.
It assures cycling back through history
Kamakura is an old town with vast history. Cycling in this city means you are riding across temples, old landscape, people and old houses as well as the maintained cultural cuisines like the seafood. Who wouldn’t feel like they are cycling back in time? Take in this feeling as it will live on with you.
Cycling at sunset
Since this town is found along the beach, it will be so much fun cycling along the beach as you view the sunset in the afternoon. Alternatively, you can cycle back to your room and get your rest as you watch the panoramic view of the sun setting horizon stretching miles away.
Bicycles can be accessed
In a country where the use of bicycles is a vastly encouraged mode of transport, you are sure to get bicycles across the town. You will not have to do a prior booking for one because they are spread all over and it’s also a faster mode of transportation. They are cheaper and you can buy an all-purpose mountain bike under 500 dollars from Amazon.
In addition, this is a great mode of exercise for your body and also a fun social event because I am sure you will not be riding alone and therefore you are sure to earn new friends through the ride. We all know what makes life fun is earning and learning from new friends.
I particularly encourage people to use bicycles while visiting Kamakura’s Enoden line trains rattle and Hase where there are old wooden houses that will give you the pleasure to explore with houses like Ichigeya turned to attractive cafes and gift shops as well as the iconic Daibutsu.
Before you embark on the journey make sure you are prepared for the temperatures especially during summer seasons by dressing appropriately and including a stop for your midday rest, carry plenty of water or money to buy water as you apply sunscreen, eat a healthy energetic breakfast as you will need it for your journey and familiarise with the appropriate clothing needed when entering the temple especially sarong handy for the knees and a cloth covering your shoulders.
Sophie Elise is a passionate cyclist, author, and blogger. She is very passionate about writing on different types of women’s bikes, accessories, health, fitness and more. She regularly writes on Sportsly.Net