Thursday, 8 May 2014

【Penang Temple】The Largest Buddhist Temple In Southeast Asia | Kek Lok Si

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple
Kek Lok Si Temple

Click for Chinese Version

Known as the largest Buddhist temple in Southeast Asia, Kek Lok Si temple has become one of the main attractions in Penang. Kek Lok Si is located at Air Itam which has occupied a twelve hectares of land on a mountain. During Chinese New Year, Kek Lok Si will open it's light and display fireworks. This has undoubtedly attracted many tourists from all over the world to witness this charming night of Kek Lok Si.

As I know, there are two roads leading to Kek Lok Si. One is the stairs and the other one is the Jalan Balik Pulau. I will use the stairs every time I went to Kek Lok Si. Walking along the stairs, both side are occupied with shops, which mainly aiming for the tourists. It wasn't long before I came to the Kek Lok Si signboard as shown in the photo above. Walking further a bit (left) beyond this signboard and I came to the tortoises pond.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

The tortoises pond is surrounded by the red steels wall. There is a bridge at the middle of the pond and there is a pavilion at the middle of the bridge. When I reached this tortoises pond, a shopkeeper asked me whether I want to buy water spinach to feed the tortoises or not. One water spinach is sold for RM1.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

This pavilion has become one of the must snap location for many tourists. Some will go to the bridge to feed the tortoise.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

I still remember that few years ago when I came here, there was a gigantic tortoise. It was separated with these normal size tortoises. However, I don't see this gigantic tortoise anywhere during this visit.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Passing through the tortoises pond and you will reach this shop lots area. I reached Kek Lok Si around 4.30pm and it was a weekday, so many of the shops have closed and there wasn't many tourists visiting at that time.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

There is a stone monument at the same row as the shop lot. There are many Chinese letters carved on the monument and I have a feeling that this monument has been there for quite a long time. I wonder if it has been there when this temple was first built. By the way, anyone think that the dragon statue in front is an eyesore?

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Exiting the shop lots area and you will come to this hall of Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva (Goddess of Mercy).

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

If you come from Jalan Balik Pulau, you will reach this hall directly.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

There are three large statues of deity inside the hall. At the side, there is a corner selling souvenirs. All the profits gained from selling these souvenirs will proceed to the temple building fund.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

The statue at the middle is the Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva statue. I was not sure about the other two statues.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Beside the three big statues at the middle of the hall, the wall was neatly aligned with thousands of small statues.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

The small statues on the wall is the Goddess of Mercy.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Going further from the hall of Avalokitesvara Bodhisattava and you will reach this place. This is a beautiful view where many photographers will take a shot, especially during the 'open light' on Chinese New Year.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

There are many flowers and trees planted here. It feels so nature.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

The deity at there.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

The path leading to the upper part of Kek Lok Si. Sometimes there will be beggars begging for money at here.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Another photo taken at the other side of the path.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Walked until the end of the path, turn left and you will reach this garden.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Both side of the garden is the nicely align Buddha statues.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

In the middle of the garden is a memorial hall. There are three statues of deity inside the hall.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Walking further some more is this sacred hall of the smiling Buddha. There are the Four Heavenly Kings guarding this hall.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

There is another scared hall beyond the sacred hall of the smiling Buddha.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

There are three big Buddha statues inside the hall.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

Both side of the hall is guarded by the Eighteen Arhats.

极乐寺 Kek Lok Si Temple

I went to Kek Lok Si a bit too late so I have missed the visiting time of the Pagoda of the Ten Thousands Buddhas and the 30.2 meters Goddess of Mercy statue. If you wish to visit the Pagoda of the Ten Thousands Buddhas, you will have to pay a RM2 entrance fee. To reach the 30.2 meters Goddess of Mercy statue, you can take the cable car (RM4 for two ways) or you can drive by yourself to there (have to pay for the parking fee).

Address
No. 1, Tokong Kek Lok Si, 11500, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia

Opening Time
9am - 6pm (Daily)

Contact
+60 4-828 3317

Public Transport
Rapid bus 201, 203

The following link are the photos taken during my visit to Kek Lok Si a couple of years ago
A Walk at the Temple Kek Lok Si

The following link are the photos taken during the 'open light' of Kek Lok Si
The Light Mode Kek Lok Si Temple


This post was originally written on 8th April 2014

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