Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple is a colorful and busy slice of local life in Kowloon.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple in Kowloon, Hong Kong

We recently took a trip to Hong Kong midway through Chinese New Year. We stopped by Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin, a temple we’ve enjoyed visiting in the past, on the seventh day of Chinese New Year. The seventh day on the lunar calendar is called Renri, which translates to “Human Day”. Sometimes referred to as “everybody’s birthday”, Renri is believed to be the day humans were created. Naturally, this is a busy time at temples, with devotees coming to give offerings, pay respect to the gods, and have their fortune told.

What I like about Sik Sik Yeun Wong Tai Sin temple

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin

The main thing I like about this temple are all the statues. The grounds and temple themselves are beautiful in their own right, but the statues are what stand out for me. On the patio in the front are all of the bronze zodiac animals portrayed standing upright like humans, with human hands and accessories, while wearing robes.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin lamp

In addition to the statues, I also like how I feel that I’m visiting a temple that is both popular with locals and well-known throughout the Chinese diaspora. The temple is popular with tourists too, but many of those tourists, as well as the locals, are using these grounds in the manner intended, and that’s a part of traveling that I enjoy seeing and participating in.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin

Many worshipers visit Wong Tai Sin to have their fortune told. The method is very similar to the fortune telling done at Japanese temples, with a shaker canister from which you pull a bamboo rod that corresponds to a paper fortune. However, at Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin, the fortune is not written out for you on the paper. You must take the paper to one of the many fortune tellers on site and pay for a reading. The temple’s fortune tellers reportedly have a reputation for great accuracy so fortune telling is very popular here. I have also heard the fortune tellers can be quite costly. We didn’t purchase a reading.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin lion

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin fountain

There are numerous pavilions and halls here, but not every area was accessible to us during the Chinese New Year, I’m sure in part due to a ceremony that was going on while we were there.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple in Kowloon, Hong Kong

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple

Visiting Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple

While I do think it’s worth seeing, I really don’t recommend visiting Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple during the Chinese New Year unless you’re really keen or don’t have any qualms about crowds. I’m pretty used to big crowds at this point, but making your way through a huge crowd visiting a famous Chinese temple on Renri or other major Chinese holiday can be overwhelming no matter how crowded your daily life is. Additionally, you are routed through the grounds by ropes and small metal fences when there’s a large crowd so I think it is more enjoyable to visit when you can do so at a more leisurely pace and without the restrictions on your movement. I recommend visiting on a weekday if possible.

The temple is free, though you can leave a donation in a number of well-marked places throughout the grounds and there is a MTR station next to the temple called Wong Tai Sin. On your way out of the grounds be sure to rub the dragon for extra good luck!

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin temple, Hong Kong

I’ll be linking this post to Photo Friday on Pierced Wonderings and Wordless Wednesday on image-in-ing.

Photo-Friday-Blog-Button-1 pebble_zps8ecf6b7b

 

Related posts:

12 thoughts on “Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

  • March 12, 2016 at 4:45 am
    Permalink

    I also love the statues especially the zodiac signs. I wonder how the Snake looks like :). That’s because I was born in the year of the snake. I think I’d prefer to visit this place when it’s not too crowded. When I was younger, I wouldn’t mind but as I grow older, I’d prefer not to find my way through the crowd.

    http://kaynitravelcafe.wordpress.com/
    http://www.kayniscornercafe.com/

    Reply
    • March 12, 2016 at 12:20 pm
      Permalink

      I tried to look for a snake for you, but I don’t have a photo of it. It’s right next to the horse in the photo I posted, but you can’t see the head. What a shame. I could have sworn I’d taken a photo of each one on a previous visit. Anyway, I hope you visit Asia someday and that your recovery is going well.

      Reply
  • March 14, 2016 at 1:30 am
    Permalink

    The colours in the crowds and the decorations are so vibrant. How exciting to have been in HK for the New Year, and see all the festivities and decorations. Although I don’t think I’d have had my fortune told either, I’d be too afraid of what they might say!

    Reply
    • March 14, 2016 at 9:15 pm
      Permalink

      Oh, good point! The other day I read the forecast for the year for my Chinese zodiac animal and it was not so good! I am choosing to ignore it and move ahead. :)

      Reply
    • March 16, 2016 at 10:57 pm
      Permalink

      Oh good! I hope you have a great time!

      Reply
  • March 16, 2016 at 4:09 pm
    Permalink

    Very impressive looking – but I’ve always had a thing with Chinese temples: the colors, statues, incense. Visited a few when I was in Hong Kong many years back and they mesmerized me.

    Hong Kong holds special memories for me (my first Asian trip over 15 years ago). I think it’s one of the most scenic cities in the world and I’ll never forget some of the hikes I had on Victoria peak. I want to get back there one day.

    Frank (bbqboy)
    Frank recently posted…Is Bratislava worth a day trip from Vienna?My Profile

    Reply
    • March 16, 2016 at 11:09 pm
      Permalink

      Hong Kong was our first trip together outside the U.S. so it is very special for us as well. Plus it is such a unique place.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge