Every night in winter, Enoshima puts on its most beautiful luminous garments. This winter illumination, named "Shonan no Hoseki", literally "the diamonds of Shonan", will please those looking for a romantic and magical atmosphere. As its name suggests, Shonan no Hoseki feels like a rain of glowing diamonds is falling in the dark night of this small island of the Shonan area, the gem of Kanagawa prefecture’s coast.
Light shows start at the end of the day, after sunset. While the shops of the island close for the day, the main tourist attractions continue to welcome visitors with countless, colored and shiny LED lights. The nightly scenery glorifies the small island, in the heart of which a lovely itinerary has been created:
- First, visit the Samuel Cocking Garden, certainly the main attraction of this festival, with its Sea Candle tower, glowing like a lighthouse in the night, as well as the various artistic installations arranged on the grounds
- Kamegaoka square and the flowery Nakatsumiya Square in the surroundings of the garden also provide a unique atmosphere
- Then, follow the Oiwayamichi Pilgrimage Way toward the south of Enoshima to Ryuren no Kane (Ryuren Bell of Love) park
- Finally, visitors will reach the end of the island and Iwaya Caves, decorated with Christmas-style lights.
A stroll under the thousands of glowing lights is absolutely magical. Visitors are enthralled by the charming and multicolored scenery and feel like they have become children again. They are surprised by astounding and wonderful decorations at each turn. Even when the weather is cold, time flies by very fast. This nightly discovery of Enoshima is strongly recommended.
Good to know: Shonan no Hoseki spans several weeks that have been organized around various events. The beginning of the seasonal illumination brings to the fore the Sea Candle tower in Samuel Cocking Botanical Garden. The tulip flowerbeds are the main attraction in January. The winter festival ends in apotheoses: The last week, overlapping Valentine’s Day, is colored in rosy tones, shiny metallic artworks made of numerous mirrors are displayed, and crystalline lanterns are suspended.
How to get to Shonan no Hoseki
On foot -- about 15 minutes from Enoshima bridge
Location reachable with the JRP : order your Japan Rail Pass (from ~US$ 281)
The visit of the island is free, except for:
- Samuel Cocking Garden: ¥200 / ~US$ 1.80
- Iwaya Caves: ¥500 / ~US$ 4.60
Or ¥1,000 (~US$ 9.20) with the one-day eno=pass (includes: the escalators, Samuel Cocking Garden, Sea Candle and Iwaya Caves), purchasable on the island
Get your Japanese Yens free of charge
From the end of November to mid-February, every night from 5pm to 8pm (from 5:30pm from the end of January, and to 9pm on the weekends)
Temporary closing possible according to weather conditions
How long / when to visit
Allow 2 to 3 hours