Enoshima

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Enoshima Island
"Enoshima in the Sagami Province" by Hokusai

Enoshima (江の島?) is a small island, about 4 km in circumference, at the mouth of the Katase River, which flows into Sagami Bay in Japan. Part of the city of Fujisawa, it is linked to the Katase section of the same city on the mainland by a 600 meter-long bridge. Adjacent to some of the closest beaches to Tokyo and Yokohama, the island and the nearby coast are the hub of a local resort area.

Contents

History

Benzaiten, the goddess of music and entertainment, is enshrined on the island. The island in its entirety is dedicated to the goddess, who is said to have made it rise from the bottom of the sea in sixth century.[1] The island is the scene of the Enoshima Engi, a history of the shrines on Enoshima written by the Japanese Buddhist monk Kōkei in 1047 AD.

In 1880, after the Shinto and Buddhism separation order of the new Meiji government had made the land available, much of the uplands was purchased by Samuel Cocking, a British merchant, in his Japanese wife's name. He developed a power plant and extensive botanical gardens including a very large greenhouse. Although the original greenhouse was destroyed in the 1923 Great Kanto earthquake, the botanical garden (now the Samuel Cocking Garden) remains an attraction with over half a million visitors a year.

Enoshima was the Olympic harbor for the 1964 Summer Olympics.[2]

Enoshima is now the center of Shōnan, a resort area along the coast of Sagami Bay.

Transportation

Enoshima is served by three railway stations: Katase-Enoshima Station on the Odakyū Enoshima Line, Enoshima Station on the Enoshima Electric Railway, and Shonan Enoshima Station on the Shonan Monorail.

Notes

  1. ^ Papinot (1972:82)
  2. ^ 1964 Summer Olympics official report. Volume 1. Part 1. p. 115.

References

External links

Coordinates: 35°17′59″N 139°28′49″E / 35.29972°N 139.48028°E / 35.29972; 139.48028