New Territories, Sightseeing

Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery (Man Fat Sze) in Sha Tin

We had read about this monastery before but didn’t take care to write down the directions before we decided to visit. As a result, we ended up visiting the Po Fook Hill Ancestral Halls first, but no harm done because they were also quite fascinating!

We realised our mistake and eventually found the path to the Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery.
In 1951 Yuet Kai founded the Monastery. He preached Buddhism in a local monastery. He planned to establish a Buddhist college when he accepted an estate from a pious Buddhist who was also a rich merchant. The Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery was constructed at the beginning of 1949. It took eight years to complete all the buildings and another ten years to finish the 12,800 Buddha statues.

The walk (better said the climb) upwards is long – it’s 20 minutes with steep steps.

But you are being rewarded with gold statues lining the path up the hill. To me they appeared to be monks, but I am no expert!

The 10,000 Buddhas are housed in the temples on the first and second levels at the top of the hill.

The inner temple of the monastery. Towards the right is the embalmed corpse of the monk Yuet Kai, who founded the monastery, covered in gold.

Apparently there are over 13,000 Buddha images which line the walls of the temple. They are all tiny, and set in small alcoves around the temple.

The nine-story pagoda for which the monastery is famous:

It’s a very interesting place, although apparently it’s no longer an active monastery as monks no longer live there and the facility is managed by laypersons.

How to get to the Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery, rather than the Po Fook Hill Ancestral Halls:

  • Take the East Rail Line to the Sha Tin stop
  • Go out Exit B
  • Go left outside the exit and walk down the pedestrian ramp
  • Follow Pui Tau Street toward the left.
  • Cross the street here and go to the left
  • When you see the Sha Tin Government Building turn right and walk down the street (if you walked passed the Sha Tin Government Building, you will see the white cemetery entrance with the escalator and stairs – that’s the wrong place)
  • At the end of the street (passed the shopping building and IKEA, the underground parking) you will start to see the golden buddhas as you start up the hill – and it’s a long climb, around 20 minutes at least. Take your time and some water with you!
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