Welcome to Kamakura, a serene town nestled between mountains and sea, just a short train ride away from Tokyo. For over 800 years, this ancient capital has been home to 150 shrines and temples that embody the essence of this city. Alongside these, small businesses and craft cultures thrive in historical buildings, contributing to the local way of life. Kamakura perfectly blends the old with the new and our tradition-respecting spirit, making it a unique and cherished destination. With almost 20 years of experience, our staff is excited to guide you to their favorite spots in Kamakura.
Guide: Kayo Iiyama [Manager of Tsuchiya Kaban Global Business Dept.]
Guest: Omar Santis [Musician from Sweden]
A wide collection of renowned Japanese ceramics.
Kayo: Utsuwa Shoken onari NEAR has deeply connected with prominent Japanese contemporary ceramic artists for over 20 years.
Omar: I am very excited to be able to see such a wide range of Japanese ceramic artists' works in one place, which is pretty rare.
Kayo: The owner is one of the pioneers in introducing contemporary artists' works into daily use. It is known as an international gallery store with fans at home and abroad. As you use them, they become more and more interesting - the owner's goal is to connect the makers of such vessels with their users.
Omar: Japanese ceramics have a wide range of textures, designs, and shapes, enhancing any dish regardless of country. I will definitely get them as gifts for myself and my family!
📮 5-1 Sasame-cho, Kamakura City, Kanagawa Prefecture
Kamakura carving is a traditional Japanese craft.
Kayo: Finally, we have Sunsho-do, which specializes in Kamakura carving, a lacquered wood carving that originated from Buddhist sculpture during the Kamakura period.
Omar: The building is remarkable with its fusion of castle and temple motifs!
Kayo: The store and residence, built in 1936, have been recognized as important architectural structures, including being registered as tangible cultural properties by the country. With a history of 800 years, this carving is designated as a traditional craft by the government, ensuring the preservation of this technique for generations to come.
Omar: How amazing that these pieces' delicate yet powerful beauty have been preserved over the centuries!
Kayo: The design and carving are all done by hand by artisans. After many layers of lacquer are applied, the gloss is relieved through a unique surface polishing process. Kamakura carvings are said to have a 100-year warranty because of these many careful steps.
Omar: It is extraordinary to visit a place, carefully select items made by artisans, and experience ancient times firsthand in an age when we can buy anything online or have virtual experiences. It was a day that made me rediscover the wonder of travel！