Tin Hau Temple

Most towns in Hong Kong, New Territories and the outlying islands have a Tin Hau Temple. The most famous of these is in Causeway Bay on Hong Kong Island.

Tin Hau Temple honors Tin Hau, the Goddess thought of as the empress of heaven, who goes by several other names in different parts of Asia. You’ll find a temple in her honor in many spots as you travel through Hong Kong districts. Be sure to visit the most famous, the temple in Causeway Bay.

Legend says that Tin Hau was a girl born in 960 during the Song dynasty. She is said to have stood at the ocean shore to guide boats to safety, especially during typhoons and other bad weather. Over the years Taoist and other worshippers recognized Tin Hau as a protective spirit for fishermen and others traveling the seas. Visit any Hong Kong tourist shop to purchase a small Tin Hau statuette as your own protective talisman.

The Causeway Bay temple was originally built in the early 1700s as a small shrine on the edge of Victoria Harbour at the site where the Tai family found a small Tin Hau statue. Now it is 1,000 feet (300 meters) inland, not because it was moved, but because of landfill in Causeway Bay shifting the shoreline out.

Locate the temple by its bright green Chinese-style tile roof and large stone lion guarding the entrance. Note the Chinese dragons at the top of the roof. Inside, see a depiction of Tin Hau in red garments with two demonic statues guarding her from attack.

The visit to the temple will take just a few minutes, although you may extend your visit to seek a calm, cool area to worship, reflect or escape the noise and heat of the city. Near the temple, enjoy other sites of the Causeway Bay area, particularly Victoria Park and the Noon-Day Gun.

The Causeway Bay Tin Hau Temple is open daily. Reach it easily by the Island MTR line, getting off at Tin Hau station.

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