As you make your way through the lively marketplace at the entrance of Kek Lok Si smells of laksa and noodles fill the air, while hawkers at the numerous craft and souvenir stalls vie for your attention. Stop to feed a turtle or release one into the pond, a Buddhist tradition said to ensure good luck. Gaze up at the 98-foot (30-meter) high pagoda, on which the figures of 10,000 Buddhas are carved. Walk or take the elevator up the steep mountainside to enjoy sweeping views of the city as well as a close-up view of the giant bronze statue of Kuan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy.
Kek Lok Si, otherwise known as the Temple of the Supreme Bliss, is the largest and most significant Buddhist temple in Penang. Partially carved into the hilltops at Air Itam, just 2 miles (3 kilometers) from Penang Hill, this house of prayer is a focal point for Buddhist life in Penang.
The grounds are divided into three main sections. The first area you’ll see is the marketplace at the entrance. The big attraction is undoubtedly the central grounds, which feature the giant pagoda and the statues of the four heavenly kings in the main prayer hall. Each one is said to control a different point of the compass.
From here, the temple grounds extend up the mountainside. For a small charge you can take an elevator to the top, or if you’re feeling energetic you can walk. Besides the commanding, 99-foot (30-meter) high statue of Kuan Yin, you’ll find a large pond filled with koi and enjoy commanding views of the city.
As the most significant Buddhist temple in Penang, Kek Lok Si hosts a number of festivals throughout the year. The most spectacular celebration is the Chinese New Year. For the first 33 days of the year, the temple becomes a sea of color and light. Parades with costumes, lanterns, music and dance are great fun for the entire family.
Kek Lok Si is located in Georgetown and a number of buses on the Rapid Penang Route will take you there. The temple is open daily and there’s a small charge to enter.
Make the most of your visit to Kek Lok Si Temple. Here's a list of the most popular activities:
If you'd like more activities, have a look at our George Town things to do page.
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Situated in George Town, this hostel is 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Kek Lok Si Temple and 2.7 mi (4.3 km) from Penang Hill. Suffolk House and Penang State Mosque are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Situated in George Town, this vacation home is 1 mi (1.6 km) from Penang State Mosque and within 3 mi (5 km) of Kek Lok Si Temple and Penang Hill. Wat Chaiya Mangkalaram and Gleneagles Penang Medical Centre are also within 3 mi (5 km).
We were there for 3 nights and some flies were fiund in the bathroom on the 2nd night onwards. Not sure how it came in but it will be good if the housekeeping can look into this issue. Thanks Judy
Situated in George Town, this vacation home is close to Holy Spirit Cathedral, Kek Lok Si Temple, and Penang Hill. Also nearby are Hospital Lam Wah Ee and Penang State Mosque.
Situated in George Town, this vacation home is 0.8 mi (1.3 km) from Penang State Mosque and within 3 mi (5 km) of Kek Lok Si Temple and KOMTAR. Wat Chaiya Mangkalaram and Penang Times Square are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Located in the heart of George Town, this apartment building is 1 mi (1.6 km) from Penang State Mosque and within 3 mi (5 km) of Kek Lok Si Temple and Penang Times Square. Gleneagles Penang Medical Centre is 3.1 mi (4.9 km) away.
Situated in George Town, this vacation home is 0.3 mi (0.5 km) from Holy Spirit Cathedral and 3.1 mi (5 km) from Penang Times Square. Hospital Lam Wah Ee and Penang State Mosque are also within 2 mi (3 km).