Saturday, December 12, 2009

A walk around Penang Kek Lok Si and the New Temple building

Lately I have a chance to visit Penang Kek Lok Si temple, or shall I say revisit as this is not my first trip. It’s has been a long time since I step foot in Kek Lok Si Temple. I think it’s more than 15 years and I can hardly remember a thing about it. This time I get to drive to Kek Lok Si and park my car in front of the temple. As I went there early in the morning on weekday, there aren’t many visitors. The way to Kek Lok Si temple is simple. All you have to do is search for Kek Lok Si temple using Google Map and you’ll find your way. If you’re coming from Penang Bridge, the best way that you should follow is through Lebuhraya Jelutong -> Jalan Tunku Kudin ->Jalan Masjid Negeri ->Jalan Air Hitam.
Just like any other temple, Kek Lok si temple is a quiet place. A place that people come to pray, wish or searching for a peaceful mind. Kek Lok Si temple is more than 100 years old. You can find lots of old painting, statues and work of art around the temple. Don’t forget to check out the ceilings as that’s the best part of the temple. At the top side of the temple a newly built 16 pillars shelter for the Kuan Yin statue along with some buildings were built. The opening ceremony was carried out just couple of days before I visited the temple. Honestly I have no idea about the ceremony but I did catch up with the evens after the ceremony. There seems to have some presentation and lectures given by the elder monk. I didn’t stay for the lectures. I’m more interested in scouting around the temple. It took me just an hour to check out the whole temple. As Kek Lok Si temple is situated along Penang Hill, you need to walk up hill to reach the newly built temple. Alternately you can try out the mini cable car that connects the old temple and the new temple. It’s a short distance but definitely better for the seniors to ride it. The walk to the upper hill temple is difficult for seniors. It will be better just to take the mini cable car. Plus you can enjoy the scenery from the mini cable car.
There is couple of things that I saw that I don’t like. The first thing is beggars. Don’t be surprise that the money they get might be more than your salary. Another type of beggars or shall I say people that going around asking for donation. These people will play their games offensively rather than defensively like the prior group. Neither one of them is good for the image of tourism. The second thing is the admission fee needed for some area of the temple. I still remember that I was free to go any place in the temple. The admission fee is just preventing people from visiting the area.
If you haven’t been to Kek Lok Si temple for a long time, perhaps this might be a good time to check it out as the new temple has completed. Make sure that you choose the visiting date carefully to avoid the crowd. If not you might spending more time in traffic jam than touring. It’s just a 2 hour tour if you’re able to beat the crowd.

P/S: Make sure your car can go up hill before you try to get to the top new temple. It will be a good idea to just stop at the old temple and take the mini cable car to the new temple.

1 comment:

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