Wednesday, February 13, 2013

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Xiyun Temple, Wugu, Taipei

2/13/2013 Taiwan Explorer

The Xiyun Temple 西雲寺 (literally West Cloud Temple) in Wugu District is a Buddhist temple from Qing Dynasty. This rather simplistic temple might not look like very significant, but the over 250 years of history make it a very precious relict of the past. It was built in 1752, but like so often renovated several times (the biggest renovations took place in 1811, 1852, 1883, 1904 and 1992 according to a stele, source). My wife and I arrived at the temple after we were exploring Taishan for few hours. It was about 17.30 when we reached there and the main door was just being closed in front of our eyes. My wife asked, if they could allow us to have a look inside and they were kind to do so. Here are our photos from of the West Cloud Temple:

This old stele preserved a lot of historic information.

Cherry blossoms attracted my wife's attention.

This is the main altar.

A closeup on the worshipped goddess.

This incense burner was one of the most beautiful ones I've seen in Taipei.

The main hall.

As I was taking photos, a nun came out and apologized for closing the main hall and welcomed me to take photos. I replied it was no problem and politely nodded with a smile. She seemed to appreciate it. Those small encounters with friendly locals is what makes Taiwan such a great place to be.

A view on the side wing.

The front yard.

A closeup on the facade.

An old door.

The other smaller wing.

Nicely cut trees.

The main hall from the side.

The main entrance from close.

Wifey in the distance.

The temple offers a nice view on Luzhou and Sanchong.

One thing that makes visiting this temple a little bit inconvenient is its location. There is no MRT station nearby, but there is a Xiyun Temple Bus Station. In case you take the bus, you will need to walk uphill for about 15 minutes. My wife and I took a cab from Taishan and drove all the way up to the temple and it turned out to be a great idea, because my wife is pregnant and she would be too tired to walk up by foot. The most convenient way to visit this temple would be to go to Guandu MRT Station and then take a cab from there. It might take about 10 minutes and the cost will not be that high. When leaving, you can walk down slowly and then take a bus. Oh, and another thing: The temple is located in the middle of a big cemetery - if you believe in ghosts, then better don't visit too late.

View Taipei Map by MKL in a larger map

Map and useful information


Pinyin: Xīyǘn sì
Related website: Wiki-CH
My useful tips: Transportation in Taipei


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