3 Things to See and Do on Enoshima Island in Kanagawa
Japan always has something to offer when one is looking to explore outside of the Tokyo city limits. The rich history and deep cultural insights allow you to discover uncharted territories in the land as well as inside within yourself.
Having memories that last a lifetime can be something sacred to all daring enough to traverse through unique environments. If you're reading this article, perhaps such a perspective is something you appreciate. While popular attractions have their respective appeal, more esoteric destinations in Japan can whet the appetites of more seasoned adventurers. One such place is Enoshima, a quiet island off the Kamakura coast.
Here are a few suggestions to get your journey off on the right foot:
1. Visit the Enoshima Aquarium
Known for being an area teeming with abundant marine life, the Enoshima Aquarium is a place where you can learn about the diverse sea creatures that inhabit the region.
Various species of fish, sharks, and seals make the aquarium their respective home for your viewing pleasure. A special jellyfish room is also provided, which a guide will discuss the different varieties of the invertebrates held and their behaviors.
The brilliant lighting (or lack thereof) of the space focuses on the enclosures of these animals, illuminating the anatomical figures of the creatures encapsulated. The gentle drifting of the jellyfish is worth the price of admission, mesmerizing you with a subtle touch of beauty in motion. In the main hall, there is a massive tank containing a multitude of sea creatures as vibrant as the sea itself. Within specific timeframes, you have the opportunity to witness another show that features a proper feeding of the animals inside. Affixed with a camera, the diver descends deep into the glass enclosure while explaining the intricacies of taking care of these sea creatures. By the end of the demonstration, you'll have a deeper understanding of the world beyond soil and sand.
While ¥2400 for an adult ticket may be a bit on the higher end, it is an enriching experience that is definitely worth your time.
2. Explore Enoshima Island at Night
Now you have the opportunity to visit the island itself! Towering temples and walkways cover the isolated landmass, allowing you to experience an "authentic" feel of the country.
While visiting during the daytime is a great idea, spending time on the island while at night has its unique charm. The soothing winds of the surrounding sea complement the stillness of the evening that makes the trek invaluable. An assortment of Shinto shrines covers the island, all paying tribute to the goddess of music and entertainment Benzaiten. Legend has it that the island was resurrected from the bottom of the sea due to her divine powers.
Feel free to experience the mysticism of the island, traversing the hills and valleys that encompass the entirety of the landmass. If you felt as though you spent a substantial amount of coin at the aquarium, have no fear! The island is free to travel around to your heart's content.
3. Engorge on Local Delicacies
After walking around the island, you'll most likely develop an appetite. Feel free to try some of the various restaurants that are on the island. With several washoku and yoshoku options of choosing, don't hesitate to get your hands on some of the local cuisines in the area. Known for shirasu, a tiny, translucent fish that is rich in flavor, you'll be able to find an assortment of dishes containing the ingredient.
One restaurant on the island, Il Chianti, has Italian options with shirasu included in the recipes. Whether you choose Japanese or European fare, adding shirasu to your order is an experience you'll most certainly remember.
Although Enoshima contains a litany of adventures around the area, these three options are an excellent start to your journey. Learning about the expansive life under the sea, spending time with Benzaiten, and enjoying bizarre food options on the island, there is much to offer all voyagers. If you're looking to add another uncommon destination to your travel plans, look no further than Enoshima!