Sitting proudly within the confines of the the Kotoku-In temple, the Great Buddha statue, or Daibutsu is another very popular religious attraction of Kamakura. Despite its overall sense of serenity, the Daibutsu had a rather tumultuous history! It all started in 1233 when the good people of Kotoku-In decided to erect a giant wooden representation of Buddha. After a good decade of hard labor the gorgeous wooden wonder was finally unveiled to all. Unfortunately, in 1248 a storm destroyed both the wooden statue and its hall.
Realising that wood was too fragile, it was decided to build yet another statue of Buddha by this time in bronze. Finished in 1252, the bronzed version of the wooden Buddha statue is the statue that you can enjoy today in Kotoku-In.
While the Daibutsu itself was built to withstand the worst conditions, its main protective hall was not so lucky and was destroyed by powerful storms in 1334 and in 1369, as well as in 1498 by a devastating tsunami. Unphased by the elements, the Daibutsu was still standing proudly and serene as before. It was after the 1498 tsunami that it was decided to let Daibutsu remain standing in the open air.
Finally and according to Kotoku-In record, the Daibutsu measure 13.35m with a total weight of around 121 tonnes.