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Buddhism is the second largest religion in Malaysia, after Islam, with 19.2% of Malaysia’s population being Buddhist. Buddhism was introduced to the Malays by the Chinese way back in the early 13th century which was attributed to the Spice trade routes. The Chinese continued to arrive in waves down the ages and built some magnificent Chinese and Buddhist temples, which stand until today.
One of which is the Puh Tao Tze temple. This is the biggest and the most well-known Buddhist temple in Kota Kinabalu. The temple was built in 1980 and was designed with traditional Chinese architecture unique to all Buddhist temples. It is strategically located on a small hill along Jalan Tauran Bypass, approximately 20 minutes away from the city center. The serene location makes it a perfect venue for prayer, meditation and even just to relax. Aside from that, anyone who wish to explore is very much welcome and its FREE!
The temple itself is quite massive. The first thing that you will see is the 10-meter tall, 30000-pound Goddess of Mercy statue standing tall at the main entrance.
The main entrance have an impressive stone staircase pavilion, flanked by no less than ten Chinese deities on each side.
The main hall has 3 Buddha statues while the newer part of the temple at the back has a big reclining Buddha statue and statues of the 18 arhats.
Another distinguishing feature is a massive bell weighing 3500lbs and 7ft high. This bell is rung 108 times every morning at 6:00 am. The number coincides with the beads on a Buddhist rosary and the Buddha’s name is repeated with each ring. If you are a devotee you can pay RM100 to have your name inscribed on the bell.
This place may not be a popular tourist destination in Kota Kinabalu but it is worth a visit. You can get here by taking the Jln Tuaran bus or hire a taxi which would cost around RM36.
Happy travels everyone 🙂