Kek Lok Si

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Penang, Malaysia
04-828 3317

Kek Lok Si Penang Reviews

camwilde camwilde
163 reviews
Large Budhist Temple - Worth the Visit Nov 16, 2013
I walked to this temple from Penang Hill (didn't take long). You could see the immense structure in the distance and you couldn't get lost! After all, it is the largest Buddhist temple in Southeast Asia.

Once I arrived there, I wished I had paid more attention. There is a path up to the temple on foot through a bunch of vendor stalls. Instead of taking a right and going up the road, continue straight. I went up the road, which wasn't exciting and I had to keep on my toes (to avoid cars).

Once at the temple, there is a lot to explore. There are lots of rooms with fish and Buddha statues. I would say there are two main attractions though, the Pagoda and the Large Buddha statues. Both have a small fee.

The seven-storey Pagoda of Rama VI is a nice walk. You ascend floor by floor and then get to see a good view of the surrounding area. It felt like there was always another floor. At the top, you see an excellent view of Penang.

On the other side of Kek Lok Si is the bronze statue of Kuan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy. It is over 30 meters high and you can go up an elevator to see it. There is a fish pond up there also.

The sad thing about the temple is all the commercialism around and inside it. Lots of things for sale. It kind of cheapened the experience for me. Outside, fine. But inside the temple?

Overall, it is worth the visit.
Kek Lok Si
Kek Lok Si
Kek Lok Si
Kek Lok Si
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aaronw3 aaronw3
17 reviews
The one big temple near Georgetown Feb 20, 2012
I took the local bus to Kek Lok Si in the afternoon, about a half hour ride on a brand new airconditioned bus for 2 RM. The bus stop is at the bottom of a covered sidewalk that leads up to the temple. The side walk is lined with souvenir stands that sold the same things you could by in town but more expensive. Once at the temple there is some free rooms to walk through and you get a real nice view of the city of Georgetown. You get a real sense of the actual size of the city. You can take an inclined rail car up to the Kuan Yin (temple of the goddess of mercy) statue or you can walk up the winding road to the right of the temple entrance. This bronze statue is over 30 m tall and is covered by a large roof with 6 or 8 nicely designed pillars. There is also a 6 or 7 story pagoda of the 10,000 buddahs.

On the way out there is a small bridge that leads over an unassuming pond. When you walk over this bridge stop and take a look in the water. There is a very, very large turtle in there that must be over two feet long. As you keep walking there is about a hundred turtles in a pond area to your right.

All in all this was a nice half day trip on a cloudy day and it was nice to take a break from the beach days.
iramalama iramalama
82 reviews
Kek Lok Si Buddhist Temple of Penang May 21, 2011
Kek Lok Si is Penang's "Temple of Supreme Bliss." I don't know what guardian goddess Kuan Yin thinks about it, but I would describe this place as blissful. And big! I would have to say that as far as single attractions go, this would have to be Penang's best site.

Construction started on this Buddhist temple back in 1890 and it has continued, on and off, ever since. They are constantly adding to it. One of the most recent additions was a pagoda-style roof over the 30m bronze Kuan Yin statue (which you get to by taking an incline rail up the hill it sits on).

Another cool attraction is the 7-storey Pagoda of 10,000 Buddhas. I lost count, but it seemed like there were that many. There are some nice gardens, prayer areas, and views of Penang from a distance.

We took a public bus (RM2 one-way) to get out here. The last stop on the line stops in front of the temple entrance. Taxis would be much more expensive. But we were planning to take one when leaving...but there weren't any waiting! So, maybe it is good to have him wait for you if you do take a taxi.

When you get to the entrance, you have to walk up through a row of souvenir shops on the stairs up to the gates. They sell mostly what is sold in the city...but at a slightly higher starting price, it seems. A turtle sanctuary lets you know that you are almost to the entrance. The temple itself is free, but there are certain parts of it which require a RM2 'donation' to enter.

It closes at 6pm sharp. No fooling around there. But that does not mean they will actually tell you to leave. We got locked inside a series of gates and got different answers from different people as to how to get to the exit. It took about 45 minutes to get from where we were at 6pm to the bus stop. That was fun exploring parts of the temple that we were probably not supposed to be wandering around. The incline rail up to the Kuan Yin statue closes around 5 or don't get there too late. But don't miss this's very pretty and blissful.
Kek Lok Si Temple, Penang
Kek Lok Si Temple, Penang
Kek Lok Si Temple, Penang
Kek Lok Si Temple, Penang
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
soonthiam says:
The better has changed alot since I last went there in 1981. It has many new additions.:)
Posted on: May 21, 2011
hayley_phoon hayley_p…
99 reviews
Kek Lok Si Temple Jan 13, 2011
This is one of the finest Temple in the south east asia, and now they are builded the tallest statue. Kek Lok Si temple stands majestically on the hill in Ayer itam. Recently the big statue it's about to be done. The architecture in the temple was pretty amazing of their arts on the walls and on the ceiling. it's a very historical place to go if you're in penang.

This temple is taking more than 20years to be build. The surrounding of the temple are very scenic due to the location were up on the hill.
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
jeyavelrajn jeyavelr…
2 reviews
An ancient Chinese Temple Mar 21, 2011
Kek Lok Si, or Temple of Supreme Bliss, is the largest and arguably the best known temple in Penang. It straddles a hillside overlooking the town of Ayer Itam and George Town beyond that. It is a temple that harmoniously blend Mahayana Buddhism with Taoist beliefs and other Chinese rituals, creating an amalgam that is uniquely its own. Since the olden days, the hills of Ayer Itam are regarded as important geomantically. Known as He San, or Crane Hill, they are recommended as a retreat for Taoist practitioners striving for immortality.

The initial temple structure was built on the summit of He Shan. It cost $180,000 Straits Dollars. The 10-acre site was purchased in 1893, and the temple was completed in 1904. An official opening ceremony was conducted on 13 January, 1905.

The two star attractions of Kek Lok Si Temple are the Pagoda of 10,000 Buddhas and the giant bronze statue of Kuan Yin.

Depending on your location, you can take Rapid Penang Bus 201, 203, 204, 206, 306 and U502. Check the Rapid Penang Bus Route for details, map and time table. The most convenient bus stop is located along Jalan Pasar, at the foothills of the temple. Jalan Pasar is a one-way street. Walk following the traffic flow until you reach a T-junction. You can see Kek Lok Si towering to the left side. Turn left and walk in its direction.

The best time to visit the temple is during the Chinese New Year, from 6'30- 9pm. On other days the temple closes early in the evening.
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
hlek hlek
17 reviews
Kek Lok Si Temple during Chinese New Year Jan 27, 2010
I'm quite surprised that this is the first review about the temple on TB. Anyway, I'm sure many have heard about Kek Lok Si Temple but I'll do a quick introduction.

Yes, it is the largest Buddhist Temple in South East Asia. It is a temple situated mid-hill, accessible either by foot or car. The temple's ground consist of a seven storey pagoda, several prayer halls, thousands of buddha statues & a bronze status of Kuan Yin aka Goddess of Mercy. The temple was built in the 19th century and was touched up ever since to preserve its longevity.

To reach the temple, a short climb is required from the foot of the hill. There is another option of taking a taxi and get the driver to drop you at the temple directly, and you can then descend by foot. Both ways, you'll still get to experience the awesomeness of the temple.

From the Air Itam market place, you can see a stretch of souvenir stalls lining up the hill steps. Just follow the trail and you'll reach the temple without a sweat. Don't worry, the pathway is rooftop covered so you'll escape the sun. Along the way, you'll pass a tortoise pond (try to spot a large tortoise believed to be 100+ years old).

Once you're in the temple, you can see several prayer halls, a seven storey pagoda, hundreds of buddha statues surrounding the shrine and worshipers from all over the world. You can roam freely around the temple and if you're charitable enough, feel free to donate to their temple fund by approaching one of the monks/volunteers seated at the side. In return, blessing will be given to you & your loved ones.

From the main temple, you can opt to either walk, or take the inclining train to the bronze Kuan Yin statue further up the hill. The ride will take only 5 mins, but the walk might take 30 mins. If you have a car, you can drive up too. The statue's height is approx. 30m with a newly built ornate shelter. From the place, you can also enjoy a good bird-eye view of Penang island.

Annually, the temple is at its prime beauty and amazement during the Chinese New Year celebration. Throughout the 20 days or so (stretching from the eve of Chinese New Year's day according to lunar calendar until the fifteenth day of the month) the temple will be lit with thousands of lanterns and lights. There will also be hundreds of flowers placed around the temple. During this occassion only, the temple is open at night till 12 midnight.

So, to all TB members visiting Penang this forthcoming chinese new year (14 Feb 2010), please don't miss the opportunity of witnessing the grand display of Kek Lok Si. Entrance is free (except for the pagoda and if you want to take the train to the Kuan Yin status). Enjoy!
Pagoda and Buddha
Meditating Buddha
2 / 2 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy

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