Regarded as a Grade II historic building due to its historic value, the Wong Tai Sin Temple is an expansive 18,000 square meter Taoist temple dedicated to the Great Immortal Wong. Ideally situated in northern Kowloon on the southern quarter of Lion Rock, this sprawling place of worship is one of Hong Kong’s most frequented and revered shrines that have enchanted visitors and pious worshippers since time immemorial.
Elisa.rolle, Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple 11, CC BY-SA 3.0
The magnificent Nine- Dragon Wall, built in the form of its Beijing counterpart is one highlight within the temple grounds while other noteworthy venues include the Three-Saint Hall devoted to Guan, Guan and Lu Dongbin, and the mesmerizing painting of philosopher Confucius. Housing an exquisite collection of an ancient Buddhist writing and Confucian/Taoist literature this monumental temple ground is also home to a lush Good Wish Garden. Other must-see locales include the glorious Grand Hall and the Sansheng Hall while the three memorial pergolas are equally captivating.
A veritable treasure chest for architecture buffs, the temple’s towering red pillars, and yellow lattice belong to the traditional Chinese temple school of design. Visitors should also take note of the multihued carvings and blue friezes in the structure in addition to its bright golden roof which casts golden shadows across the landscape on sunny days.
Considered a hotspot for Taoist weddings in the recent past, Wong Tai Sin Temple is also said to grant its devotees wishes if one performs the Kau Cim ritual. Those who wish to indulge in the practice must set their incense sticks alight while kneeling before the central alter and make a wish while shaking a bamboo container with fortune sticks. Once a stick falls from the container it is then exchanged for a piece of paper which must be interpreted by any of the many fortune tellers and soothsayer that line the temple grounds. Curious travelers may also have their fortunes read by palm readers who have also set up booths in the premises.
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