Friday, February 3, 2012

Thean Hou temple

On The In-Laws' final day in KL, we decided to do something different to the countless shopping malls and popular tourist spots like the Lake Gardens and KL Tower they had seen during their stay.

Thean Hou temple (temporary stage in foreground)
While not particularly religious, I am a big fan of temples usually for the decorative architecture, landscaped gardens or general atmosphere, and I'd read about Thean Hou temple a while back and filed it away for later reference.

Being a Chinese temple, which are among the more colourful in the world, I thought now would be a fantastic time to see it because it would be even more lavishly decorated than usual, so off we went. To get there, we got a taxi from KLCC which took us the 3km or so south of the city and dropped us off at the bottom of the hill. Being a weekend during Chinese New Year and by this time the middle of the day, there was a snake of cars lined all the way up the hill road that led to the temple as Chinese families paid their annual visit.

Stalls selling food, souvenirs and even mole removal services lined our walk up. By the time we reached the temple, The Boy was more focused on finding ice cream to cool off from the heat. Fortunately for his appetite, the base of the temple contains a small food court, plus more snack and souvenir stalls and soon we were all happily indulging in a cold treat.

Posing with the dragon to mark the new Lunar Year
We took some photos of the Lunar Animal statues that were placed in a garden area to the left of the temple. I was born in the Year of the Ox, plus I am a Capricorn, which explains my enduringly stubborn nature!

Ox baby
Thean Hou temple is certainly very colourful and visually impressive. I particularly admired the ornate dragons decorating the roof.

Dragons decorate the roof of Thean Hou temple

The Boy on the upper deck of Thean Hou temple
There are good views from the upper deck of the temple, providing more photo opportunities for us tourists! For me though, the most stunning sight were the hundreds of red lanterns strung up as Chinese New Year decorations.

The Petronas Towers are faintly visible in the distance through the archway

After we had taken our final happy snap, we headed back to KLCC, this time deciding to walk to the closest monorail station (Tun Sambanthan) given the lack of taxis! It is actually quite a simple walk, although it takes 20-25 minutes.

Just walk back down to the bottom of the hill then turn right and follow the main road past the first overpass, until you come to the stairs that take you up to the monorail station. It's a bit tiring in the heat but we all agreed the visit was well worth it!

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