Lungshan Temple is one of the most popular temples in Taipei. It’s extremely packed with locals and tourists. It’s like the rest of Taipei.
Lungshan Temple is the perfect example of Southern Chinese influences within classical Taiwanese architecture. The original temple was built in the late 1730s by Chinese settlers as a branch of the original Lunghan Temple in their homeland. In addition, the current structure was rebuilt in 1924 then rebuilt again after it was hit by American bombers during World War II.
Lungshan Temple is an example of the will of the people. It has taken many hits but it has moved on. For that reason, I wanted to make sure I paid a visit to it. After my Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Park visit, I arrived to find the temple crowded with tourists and locals. The area is filled with locals sitting around enjoying their day playing Chinese chess or discussing their everyday lives.
It’s a couple of steps from the Lungshan Temple station, so it was easy to find. The smell of incense consumed the area as I took each step closer to the temple; it engulfed my nostrils when I stepped through the temple gates. The gate resembled a Japanese torii, but it was much more defined and decorated with dragons. It reminds me of why I love Asian shrines and temples.
The temple is divided into three parts. The first area is a courtyard. Once I walked through the gates, I noticed the sound of two ponds on the right and left. One of the ponds has a massive waterfall and the other was decorated with big dragon in the middle. It’s a chaotic way to welcome visitors of the temple.
As I made my way through the temple, the second area of the temple contained a massive ash holder where people drop off one of their incense. It’s a pretty crowded area as people begin to make their way back to the last area. The last area was probably the most crowded as people were praying in unison with the temple monks.
I’ve been going to temples all my life and Lungshan has a total different vibe and feel to it. Lungshan is definitely a must visit when you’re in Taipei. It’s a great experience from the architecture to the vibe of the temple. I usually associate the words “calm and peaceful” with temples; but, Lungshan word association would be “chaotic peace”.
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