Site of the Golden Dragon Spring – Kamakura, Japan - Atlas Obscura

Site of the Golden Dragon Spring

An unassuming set of tiles next to a mailbox mark the former location of one of the most famous springs in the city. 


In the Edo period, five springs in Kamakura were selected as its best. Only three of those survive today, however, the most notable of which is the Zeniarai-mizu found at Benzaiten-Ugafuku Shrine. The two others are Nichiren-koimizu, which is purported to have sprung when the great monk Nichiren struck the ground with his staff, and Kajiwara-tachiarai-mizu, where samurai lord Kajiwara Kagetoki is said to have washed his blade after assassinating his enemy.

The two that didn’t make it are Furō-sui, or “Water of Immortality,” which was once located on the grounds of Kenchō-ji Temple, and Kinryū-sui, or “Golden Dragon Spring.” It was in the same area as Furō-sui, located in front of the temple’s main gate, but was covered with concrete when the road was expanded.

Curiously, you can see that red tiles were used to pave where the spring once was, in contrast to the rest of the street, which is either white or beige. Though there is no historical marker or plaque to commemorate the site, those in the know may figure out the location of the lost “dragon spring.”

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June 5, 2024

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