Ranked 198 among Places to Visit in Singapore
Time Required: 1 - 2 hours
A multicultural city like Singapore thrives with temples, mosques and chapels. The Chinese culture, being the most predominant, has given rise to several exquisite places of worship. Wak Hai Cheng Bio Temple, also referred to as the Yueh Hai Ching Temple, is one of the oldest Taoist places of worship in Singapore. Literally translating to 'Temple of the Calm Cantonese Sea', this quaint temple is a subtle reminder that the surrounding area used to be covered in turquoise waters prior to the land reclamation projects which pushed the shoreline outwards. Over the following years, major restorations worth at least SGD 10 million were made to this temple in due course of time and it was also honoured with the Asia-Pacific Heritage Award by UNESCO.
Also called the Temple Of Love, the Yueh Hai Ching Temple had its humble beginning as a small shrine made of wood and thatch in 1826. At present, this religious place is filled with the scent of incense sticks and the premises are ornate with three-dimensional figurines of the Chinese Opera. The gorgeous Taoist Temple is divided into two blocks, each housing its own presiding deity. The left block is dedicated to Ma Zu, or Tian Hou Sheng Mu, the Mother of Heavenly Sages. She is believed to ensure that the travellers embark on a safe journey. The block on the right is devoted to the God of Business, Xuan Tian Shang Di, also known as Duo Lau Yah, and Yue Lao, the deity of love and marriage. The glorious temple also houses the statue of the Gambler Brother, with coins around his neck. He is said to bless people with good luck and wealth. Located at Phillip Street, the magnificent sanctuary is thronged by faithful devotees who come here on a regular basis to offer prayers and seek blessings. Many people come to this temple to pray to Yue Lao, the deity of love and marriage, in aspiration of finding a suitable partner.
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