Flowers of Cambodia & Malaysia

Melbourne Time

Malaysia Time

Click On Your Flag To Translate

Malaysia and Cambodia


This is about my upcoming trip to Malaysia and Cambodia. The first part is pre-trip - information about flights, itineraries, accommodation and all the things that you need to do to plan an overseas holiday. This is my first trip to Asia and I hope it may help others. Comments are very welcome and anyone who has travelled to Malaysia and/or Cambodia, please feel free to comment and offer any advice or tips that you think would be helpful. As of today ( 28th February) , in exactly 11 days (minus 30 minutes) I will be in Kuala Lumpur.

I had the most amazing time and hope you enjoy reading about my trip. Each post is numbered and I'm doing them in order from start to finish - a little like a diary.



80. Wat Chayamangkalaram Temple

Interesting sights along the way
One of best things about doing a private tour, is you get to call the shots. If you see something along the way and you want to take a few snaps you can do so. That's the beauty of doing a private tour - you get to stop at places where you wouldn't normally have the chance if you were taking a group tour.

A parade
Above: A Parade?
After we left Kek Lok Si, we made our way to our next stop - Wat Chayamangkalaram Temple and on the way, these people were taking part in some sort of parade. The lady in the pale pink top is carrying what looks a little like a totem pole with a dragon at the top.

Above: Carrying the chairs
I don't know what the seated figures on the chairs represent, but am thinking they possibly have some religious significance. The people were walking along Jalan Balik Pulau in Ayer Itam.

Colonial architecture
Further along, closer to our next destination, we went down this street full of wonderful old architecure, and I asked Zali could we stop so I could take a few photos.
Above: Colonial architecture
The tall building in the background is the Millenium Tower, a 35-storey condominium near Gurney Drive. Penang's colonial architecture is the remains of over 170 years of British rule and this is reflected in the many beautiful buildings pre-independence of 1957.

Above: Malay Bungalow
The white balastrades are what someone used to call "milk bottles".

Above: My Closet
This building is at 24, Lorong Bangkok, 10250 Penang and going by the name (My Closet), it could be a fashion/clothing place. Then again, it could be a restaurant. I've not been able to find further information about the building. We turned right at Kelawai Street (Jalan Kelawai) then right again at Lorong Burma - Burma Road -  and we came to
Wat Chayamangkalaram Temple
Above: Entrance
The entrance is quite impressive probably due to the vast amount of gold leaf and decorative sculpture work. I would have preferred a photo without all the umbrellas and cars, but unless you get here just before opening times, it's pretty much impossible to achieve. There are market umbrellas on the left hand side as you can see, where you can buy all the trappings of touristic junk - those things so beloved of some tourists who are drawn to them like magnets.

About the temple
Wat Chayamangkalaram is a Siamese temple and was officially given its site by Queen Victoria in 1845. The land measured 5 acres. It was presented by Mr. W.L. Butterworth of the East India Company of Penang on July 22, 1845. Phorthan Kuat, a Theravada Buddhist monk from Thailand was the first monk and was known as the “Powerful Monk”. It is said he was very fond of the local speciality of Penang ~ "Asam Laksa", which is a sour fish soup with noodles. Even today devotees still bring a bowl of laksa as an offering to his shrine.

Above: The main shrine
The main shrine and pagoda were built in 1900 and was of Chinese influence until renovation which was becoming a necessity took place some 88 years later. As you walk across the courtyard towards the main temple, there are two stern -looking green-faced guards just before the temple entrance.

Take off your shoes
Remember to take off your shoes before entering the temple. They don't mind you taking photos, but keeping your shoes on is a big no-no. The main reason is to keep the temple clean and to show respect. Although one wit did say it shoes have no hope of attaining enlightenment!

Be respectful
Another thing you should remember is this - always be respectful when visiting temples. Temples, like other religious buildings are places of worship and regardless of your religious views and/or affiliations, treat them the same as you would your own.

Above: One of the two guards
Rather an awesome looking fellow isn't he? This 'guard' stands on the right hand side of the entrance.

Above: Pagoda
One of the fantastically ornate temples/pagodas in the grounds.

Above: Devotees
There are several smaller shrines of which this is part. The floor of the temple is laid with tiles of lotus patterns, a symbol of Buddhism.

Reclining Buddha close-up
Considering the age and the number of people who come here every day, the statue and its surroundings is spotlessly clean and shining. There is not one speck of dust to be found anywhere.

Above: Reclining Buddha
As you can probably tell, the above picture is two photos joined together. It was the only way I could get all of the staue in the one "photo".

Gold plated and measuring 33 metres long, there seems to be some dispute as to whether it's the longest, the second longest or the third longest in the world. Yet one source said it was actually the 14th longest in the world. But whatever the statue's standing size-wise, you can be sure of one thing - it's very, very long and very, very amazing. There is a lot of detail not only in the gold gilding everywhere, but also on the walls and ceiling. The beautiful blue and gold artwork on the walls is just superb and it's an amazing sight to behold and one of the most impressive. It is easy to see why Wat Chayamangkalaram draws such large crowds, although another reason could be due to Royal visits by the Thai King Bhumibol Adulyade, Queen Sirikitj and the Queen's mother back in 1967.

Entrance is free and is open to the public from 6.00am - 5:30pm and is about a 10 minute drive from Georgetown.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...