Po Lin Monastery

Po Lin Monastery is another popular attraction in Ngong Ping 360 in Lantau Island, Hong Kong. A visit at the themed village is not complete without visiting the Monastery. It's a must see next its extension, the Tia Tian Buddha or popularly known as the Big Buddha.

Po Lin Monastery which has developed into a renowned monastery was known as the "Big Thatched Hut" centuries ago. It was built by the monk who came by an expansive land surrounded by mountains.
Although it's full of thorny bushes, and it's difficulty to access, it's very tranquil and serine - very ideal for a perfect place for a religious practice. Before it became the Big Thatched Hut, it was used to be a small stone house. The monastery became known and attracts a lot of monks over the years.
The monastery's popularity was gained when the Big Buddha was erected in 1993 and was dubbed the "Buddhist World in the South". It has become a practice of people that after visiting the Big Buddha they go directly to the Po Lin Monastery or the other way around.
Part of the structure of the Po Lin Monastery, specifically the Grand Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas can be seen from the plateau where the Big Buddha is situated. It looks like a hotel from afar and would piqued someone's curiosity.

The Mountain Gate
Coming from the path from Big Buddha, you will be greeted by the large triple arch white stone gateway pai lau, its the Monastery's called the Mountain Gate. The Ngong Ping Piazza's pai lau was built exactly the same as this one. The Pailau is adorned with three pagoda statues on top and lion's head statues. It leads to a wide path lined with Bauhinia (flowering plants), the national emblem of Hong Kong

The Reunification Cauldron
Located at the center of this path going to the Monastery is a huge Reunification Cauldron (large metal pot used for cooking over an open fire) seated on a pedestal with a measurement of 4.1meters.This cauldron was built to commemorates the end of British sovereignty over Hong Kong. It was engraved with the pattern of Bauhinia. 

Hall of Skanda Bodhisattv
And as you walked the path leading to the monastery you will be greeted by the Hall of Skanda Bodhisattva. It's actually where we enter going to the main hall. This temple was separated from the main hall by a colorful courtyard acts as a sentinel for all the other temples inside the monastery.

The Main Shrine Hall
On the other side of the temple is the Main Shrine Hall and the new Grand Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas on the background.  The Main Shrine Hall was completed in 1970 and protected by a pair of stone lions on both sides. The steps that lead up to the main hall has flower decorations, which i love. The decoration is more grand when there's an event or celebrations.
The main temple houses the three large Buddha statues. These Buddhas are representation of the present, (Sakyamuni Buddha), the past (Bhaisajyaguru, and the future (Amitabha Buddha). The latter was flanked by two of his most revered disciples.

The Grand Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas

Behind the  Main Shine is the recently built Grand Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas. It houses the Dhiyani Buddhas statues, also known as te Five Wisdom Tathagatas, Five Great Buddhas and the Five Jinas (conqueror or victor). They are representation of the five qualities of a Buddha.

Ten Thousand miniature Buddha statues lining the wall and an elaborated decorated ceiling. I wasn't able to take pictures of the inside of the temples, because it's prohibited. Although I can't help myself but took a couple photos of the Buddhas. Many smaller temples have been demolished to make way for the huge Grand Hall.
The intricate sculptures of Buddhas and dragons on the walls of the temples are really interesting. Not to mention the colorful designs of the double-eaves gables roof. It really a popular attractions and many people go there to pay their respect and pray. Although, most of the people, like us, just enjoy the beauty of the temples.
We didn't fully explore the monastery so I wasn't able to see the Wisdom Path, the gardens and the lotus ponds. If you plan to go there,make sure you have a lot of time so you can fully enjoy your visit.

Deli Vegetarian Cafe | Delicate Vegetarian Dessert & Snacks
And if you get hungry after a very tiring climb at the Tian Tan Buddha and exploring the monastery, you can recharge by eating at the Deli Vegetarian or a snack at the Delicate Vegetarian Dessert and Snacks. It's located on the left side of the Main Shrine Hall. We weren't able to try their menu so I will have to when I get back there.

And after eating you can offer a prayer to say thank you or just to utter a prayer with an incense at the Worship Ground. You can actually do this even before you go inside the temples. It's located just before the Hall of Skanda Bodhisattv. 

You can buy the incense at the Souvenir Shops located not far from the Worship Ground. And if you want to take some items as a souvenir or a gift to your loved ones, you can there are a lot of choices at the shops. I'm not much of a souvenir person, so I didn't buy anything. I'm always happy to just have a ref magnet of the place I visited as a remembrance.
I would love to see this place at night time! And as always, when you visit a religious site even if you have a different belief, be respectful. 
For a perfect visit and to make sure you won't miss a thing, please follow the suggested tour route from their website: http://www.plm.org.hk/eng/tour.php. I wished I had seen this prior to going there, but oh well, there's always a next time.

Location: Ngong Ping 360, Lantau Island, Hong Kong
Website: http://www.plm.org.hk/eng/home.php
Opening Hours: Po Lin Monastery: 8:00am to 6:00pm | The Buddhist Relics Exhibition: 10:00am to 4:00pm. 

Just follow the path from Ngong Ping Village up to the Ngong Ping Piazza. There's a signage before the Ngong Ping Piazza on where to go. It's at the very end of the Ngong Ping 360 so you won't miss it.



Post a Comment

Thank you for reading! Please share and like my Facebook page :)

Unless otherwise stated, Lakwatserang Ligaw is the legal copyright owner of all materials on this site © Lakwatserang Ligaw | Template by Ipietoon Cute Blog Design