News On Japan

Kamakura on Foot Helps Solve Curse of Over-tourism

KAMAKURA, May 06 (News On Japan) - In the ancient city of Kamakura, an experimental initiative promoting walking to address over-tourism issues and potentially unveil new charms took place. Local residents express hopes that this experiment will not only alleviate congestion but also lead to the discovery of fresh attractions.

Walking Tour from Kamakura Station to Hase Station

During the Golden Week holidays, tourist destinations nationwide were bustling with people. While the influx of tourists is beneficial for the tourism industry, excessive crowding also poses problems of over-tourism affecting the lives of local residents.

Particularly affected is Kamakura City, where many visitors use the Enoshima Electric Railway to travel to Hasedera Temple, famous for its Great Buddha and hydrangeas.

To address this issue, on May 3rd and 4th of Golden Week, an experimental initiative promoting walking was conducted. Maps from Kamakura Station to Hase Station were distributed in front of Kamakura Station.

Takahiro Sataki, a professor at Josai International University who has been visiting Kamakura during Golden Week since 2018 to conduct ongoing observations, decided to participate in the walking tour.

Rediscovering Kamakura's Charm Through Walking?

The program featured a walk along the "shopping street exploration course," one of the two courses introduced. Walking with experts, including Professor Sataki, revealed surprising discoveries.

Josai International University, Tourism Department Professor Takahiro Sataki: "Look straight ahead."

Chihiro Sato, Announcer: "These are historical buildings, aren't they?"

Professor Sataki: "This used to be an old bank branch. Occasionally, you can find several old buildings along this street."

Sato: "It's an enjoyable way to discover these."

Professor Sataki: "Walking around Kamakura, searching for its old buildings, makes time pass quickly."

Unlike using some kind of transport, walking revealed discoveries that might go unnoticed.

Traditional Specialty "Kamakura Donburi"

Professor Sataki: "I was feeling hungry and wondering if there was a good place to eat when I found this shop. Here it is!"

"Kamakura Ocean Bistro," located on the way to Hase Station, is a newly opened shop.

Staff: "Thank you for waiting. Here's your Kamakura Donburi."

Sato: "It looks delicious! The broth is rich. The shrimp is plump, the batter is crispy, and the egg is wonderfully rich."

The Kamakura Donburi, with fried shrimp and egg, has been a specialty dish for a long time but has become less common in recent years.

Professor Sataki: "When people think of Kamakura, they usually associate it with shirasu-don."

Sato: "That was my image too."

Professor Sataki: "Discoveries like this make walking around town interesting. Thanks to this experiment, I learned something new."

This experiment, which took about 30 minutes to walk a distance that would normally take 5 minutes by Enoden train, marked its end upon reaching the station.

Professor Sataki: "Well, this is the end of the line with the train."

Sato: "We've arrived!"

Professor Sataki: "(After finishing the walking tour) So, what do you think?"

Sato: "Walking was pleasant, and there were many shops. My stomach is satisfied, and I had a lot of fun."

Source: ANN

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