Zeniarai Benten in Kamakura

After visiting some shrines in Japan, praying to the gods for health, happiness, or fertility, the Zeniarai Benten in Kamakura makes visitors take some more action. Zeniarai means coin washing, and that’s how visitors have to proceed for praying here. Nice to find hidden gems like the little shrine inside the cave in the city of Kamakura, the Benzaiten shrine. Get your thousand yen ready to be washed.

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How to get there
From Kamakura station, a relatively long walk for 20-30 minutes. Along the hiking trail to the Great Buddha of Kamakura, following the signs to Zeniarai Benten is not complicated. The hard part of the walk is the low uphill to its entrance. Zeniarai Benten shrine is the second most visited spot in Kamakura, but before adventuring yourself into searching for it, I recommend a bit planning of the area, as doing the shrine walk visit may take you long time.
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Legend says that if you wash your money in the waters flowing in the shrine, this will be doubled in your future and become wealth as Benten is the goddess for knowledge, music, and money.

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The secret shrine of Zeniarai Benten, Kamakura.
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The secret shrine of Zeniarai Benten, Kamakura.

Surrounded by natural walls and the forest, makes a wonderful spot to visit, out of the regular tracks and tourist spots. The main altar inside the cave is where visitors wash their money, in hope that will double.

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The secret shrine of Zeniarai Benten, Kamakura.
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Origami cranes hanging from the cave’s ceiling.
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Origami cranes hanging from the cave’s ceiling.
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The entrance to the Benzaiten shrine, out of a fantasy tale.

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