Thean Hou Temple Kuala Lumpur
Located on top of Robson Hill, off Jalan Syed Putra, the Thean Hou Temple (or Tian Hou Temple) is one of the largest Chinese temples in South-East Asia. The decorative beams, spectacular roofs, domed ceiling, calligraphic couplets; murals and elaborate embellishments reflect the features of Chinese temple in Kuala Lumpur and architectural beauty in Malaysia.
Thean Hou temple KL was built by the Chinese community (Hainanese) in Kuala Lumpur between 1987 and 1989. During Chinese New Year worshippers often light fireworks at the temple. Thean Hou temple belongs to the Chinese community in the country and public donations have enabled the famous tourist destination to develop by leaps and bounds.
Thean Hou Buddhist Temple has four levels. The lowest level houses the nursery, souvenir shops and food court while the first floor is the main hall where cultural and religious activities are held. The prayer hall houses 3 altars, each with a sculpture of one deity or goddess. As one enters the prayer hall, the altar on the right is dedicated to Guan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy. Tian Hou is in the centre while Shui Wei Sheng Niang (the Goddess of the Waterfront) is at the left. In the middle of the hall and between the altars are two pairs of Kau Cim oracles that can be used by visitors. Despite the dedication to Tian Hou, worship of Guan Yin (or “Guan Shi-Yin”) is a recurrent theme at the Thean Hou Temple.
On the second level, one can find the marriage registration office and resource centre. The main temple shrine is located on the third floor. Upon reaching the temple shrine, one will be amazed by the dragon-inspired columns and pagoda rooftops. It is also a perfect place to relax and enjoy the panoramic view of the temple set against the Kuala Lumpur skyline.
Activities such as the grand birthday celebrations for Goddess Tian Hou, Goddess Kuan Yin and the Goddess of the Waterfront are conducted at Thean Hou Temple. Buddhist activities include Dharma Prayers and Wesak Day celebrations. Cultural activities include the annual Mooncake Festival during the eighth lunar month and the Chinese New Year celebration.
Thean Hou Temple is opened daily between 8am and 9pm. Different opening hours apply during festivals. You can visit the temple free of charge. If you come there by rental car (or your own car) you normally pay RM3 parking fee. When it rains or during weekdays, often no fee is charged.
When you enter the temple you will see some signs that will lead you to the actual center court of the temple (located on the first floor). Here you will see many local Chinese praying and worshipping. You can buy the joss sticks for a few ringgits and place them in the big burners yourself. Once inside the temple (be sure to leave your shoes at the entrance) you will witness many more people praying and also using the fortune telling services.