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Kamakura Enshrined in Red Ink

Gosyuin is a unique memento of your temple visit

After a day spent touring temples in Kamakura, the unique details of each one can become a little fuzzy. For a special reminder of each temple, purchase a Shuin-cho (red stamp book) and commemorate your visit with a Gosyuin (red ink stamp). The Gosyuin consists of the temple name and date, hand drawn and over-laid with stamps. The Shuin-cho is more than a souvenir; it is a collection of great significance and beauty.

Pilgrims documenting their visit to a temple or shrine originally sought Gosyuin. Today, it is a unique souvenir enjoyed by many, be it the devout Buddhist or tourist with a respect for the traditional.

I would highly recommend you start your own collection. You can purchase a Shuin-cho at the temple of your choice for 1300-1500 JPY. Temples ask for a donation of 300 JPY for the Gosyuin. Typically, once you hand your Shuin-cho to the temple scribe, you will be asked to wait or return for your book after your temple visit. At Engaku-ji I was thrilled that the temple scribe hand drew my Gosyuin at the front desk so I could watch and document his work.

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