Sri Mahamariamman TempleIf you have come to the Kuala Lumpur to learn more about the rich diverse culture of Malaysia, one destination that will tell you more about the Hindu culture is the Sri Mahamariamman temple. Located at the outskirts of the popular Chinatown, this temple is more than a thousand years old and a must see temple while you are having a cultural tour in Kuala Lumpur. This temple is a heritage site with its deep historical roots going back to 1873. It serves as a worship place for Tamil all over the world to honor Mariamman. These Tamils regarded him as their protector even as they were traveling abroad more frequently as laborers to foreign lands.

An interesting fact that becomes a feature of this temple is the silver chariot kept here in the temple grounds. It is the tallest structure of its kind in the nation. This temple is a mesmerizing site with its tallest point being the tower which has five floors. When you reach the temple grounds, it is interesting to note that a Dravidian architecture is adopted for the temple buildings. Dravidian are the people who originated from the Southern part of India.

A little history lesson on the temple is necessary before visiting the temple grounds. Here’s how the temple started. In 1873, the founder of the Batu Caves, K. Thamboosamy Pillai built the temple. His sole purpose of doing so was to use the temple his family’s very own private shrine. It was later on in the early 1900s that the temple was made a place of worship for the Mariamman deity for the general public. The temple has certainly come a long way from how it looked back in the day. The atap structure which was the feature of the temple then has been changed to what it looks like in this present day. Today, it stands as the oldest temple structure in the nation. The main prayer hall is a large one with an east-west concept located in the middle of the temple.

If you wish to participate in the Hindu cultural activities, the right time to come to the temple is during the festival of Thaipusam. This would be sometime around the middle of January. The procession to the nearby Batu Caves begins right here from this temple. On the day of this particular festival, Hindu devotees make their way to the temple before the sun rises to offer prayers and offerings before making their way up to the caves. Another festival that is celebrated here in this old temple is the colorful festival of Deepavali. This festival is one of the major festivals celebrated by the Indian race in this nation.

Do remember that if you intend to enter the temple, you will have to take of your shoes as it is considered a religious sanctuary. The temple does have a service for as low as 20 cents to take care of your foot ware while you are in the temple.

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