Zushi: Rainy Season Magic with Mt. Fuji and Hydrangeas

Zushi: Rainy Season Magic with Mt. Fuji and Hydrangeas


Zushi (逗子) is a charming seaside town known for its beautiful beaches and vibrant surf culture. Surfing enthusiasts flock to these shores, and the town is also a haven for fishing, offering fresh seafood daily. In addition to its natural beauty, Zushi is dotted with quaint little shops and surrounded by lush natural resources. On clear days, you can enjoy stunning views of Mount Fuji. Conveniently located next to Kamakura, one of the popular tourist destinations near Tokyo, Zushi offers a fantastic mix of nature and local culture.

Easily accessible from Tokyo within 1-2 hours, Zushi, like Kamakura, is perfect for day trips. If you're seeking a less crowded destination for a day of exploration, Zushi is an excellent choice. In this feature, we'll guide you through a one-day itinerary in Zushi during the rainy season.

Hayama Ajisai Park (葉山あじさい公園)


Hayama Ajisai Park is perched high on the slopes of Zushi city, boasting an impressive collection of 3,000 hydrangeas. From the park, visitors can enjoy breathtaking views of the sea, Zushi City, and Mount Fuji, making it a prime spot for photography.


Although the park is small, it is densely populated with hydrangeas, creating a vibrant and colorful atmosphere during the rainy season. The best time to view the hydrangeas is in June, although they may start blooming as early as the end of May if the season is particularly rainy.


The park is situated on a steep hill, surrounded by local residences. For the best experience, it is recommended to travel to the park by train and bus, as there is no parking available for cars.

If departing from Shibuya, take the Shonan Shinjuku Line to Zushi Station, which connects to the Yokosuka Line. From Zushi Station, catch a bus and get off at the Mukaihara (向原) stop, then walk for about 10 minutes to reach the park.

Google Map: https://maps.app.goo.gl/syW65wNNw3bWy1Wk6

Gandenji Temple (岩殿寺)


Gandenji Temple (岩殿寺) is a small, tranquil temple, reminiscent of those commonly found in Kamakura, nestled on a hillside with a series of steep stairs leading up to it.

With a history spanning 1,300 years, Gandenji Temple exudes an ancient charm from the moment you enter its gate. The temple grounds feature numerous buildings scattered along the hillside, embodying the traditional Japanese Shinto Buddhist architectural style prevalent in mountainous regions.


The temple has a serene Japanese garden and a cozy resting spot, providing a peaceful retreat amidst beautiful natural surroundings. Hydrangeas greet visitors from the entrance, adding a splash of color to the tranquil scene.


The high staircase inside the temple, adorned with hydrangeas, is a notable highlight and offers unique photo opportunities.


The temple is conveniently located about a 15-20 minute walk from Zushi Station, though the path is somewhat steep. For those driving, there is limited parking available in front of the temple, but spaces can fill up quickly. Walking might be the best option to fully enjoy the scenic route.

Google Map: https://maps.app.goo.gl/kt85yU2Yw1HM3yNd9

Shin-nase Beach (真名瀬海岸)


In addition to its picturesque mountains, Zushi is distinguished by its beautiful coastline, offering stunning views of Mount Fuji. Despite being a small town, it is charming with numerous shops lining the beach. One spot gaining popularity among tourists is a distinctive white bus stop, often photographed for its picturesque setting.

However, it's important for visitors to maintain respect and order, especially for the local residents who use this bus stop. Please avoid taking photos that may inconvenience others.


The view from behind the bus stop is particularly enchanting, featuring flowering bushes, Mount Fuji, a lighthouse, and a red torii gate of a shrine in the sea.

Interestingly, rainy days often provide a clearer view of Mount Fuji than sunny ones. During our visit, it was drizzling, yet Mount Fuji was visible in all its glory.

Bus Stop Location: https://maps.app.goo.gl/qLsh1DZPfeEBnPVB6


At Shin-nase Beach, you can freely stroll along the shoreline or wade into the water with Mount Fuji as your backdrop. A small island called Najima (菜島) features a shrine gate believed to be associated with Morito Shrine (森戸神社), which is said to grant wishes for love. Alongside this gate stands the white Hayama Lighthouse, creating a wonderful scene.

Torii Location: https://maps.app.goo.gl/kSK9N6JCyPBW6zUp9

Shrine Location: https://maps.app.goo.gl/u2uPr3YtefZD7mFL8

Marlowe Pudding: Zushi's Culinary Delight


Marlowe is a renowned pudding shop in Zushi that has been delighting customers since 1984. If you visit Zushi, trying their pudding is a must. The shop is famous for its puddings served in distinctive glass cups engraved with a cowboy pattern. While Marlowe has expanded to 13 branches in Tokyo and Kanagawa, its main location remains in Zushi.


The puddings come in a variety of flavors, including the shop's original, chocolate, green tea, caramel, and more. Each pudding is made with carefully selected ingredients, ensuring a unique and delicious taste that has been beloved by locals for years.

Interestingly, Marlowe originally started as a Western food restaurant where diners could enjoy meals with views of the sea and Mount Fuji. Over time, their pudding became so popular that they expanded to focus more on this delicious dessert.


In Zushi, you can find several Marlowe branches. For a seaside experience with views of Mount Fuji and the marina, visit the Hayama Marina branch, which specializes in pudding. For a traditional dining experience, head to the original Zuyo-Shindo branch, where you can enjoy both delicious meals and their famous pudding.

Whether you're looking to savor a sweet treat or enjoy a relaxing meal with a view, Marlowe offers a wonderful culinary experience even on a rainy day.

Hayama Marina Branch: https://maps.app.goo.gl/sSG9KTcscgKCy3ew5

Zuyo-Shindo Branch: https://maps.app.goo.gl/KonzaLnpyiSYydCg8


So, what do you think of this charming seaside town of Zushi? We hope this guide helps you discover delightful spots to visit during the rainy season.

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