This is the biggest Buddhist Temple in the Southern hemisphere and definitely worth a visit. Not only will the scale of the building impress, but you will leave with a feeling of peace and tranquillity after strolling through the well kept gardens.
The reason behind the temple being open to visitors is to propagate Buddhism through a variety of cultural and educational programs. You don’t have to participate in any activity though; visitors are more than welcome to just wander around.
In the main shrine the five Buddhas of Confidence, Longevity, Wisdom, Inner Beauty and Peace are surrounded by 10 000 smaller Buddhas lining the walls. This symbolises that anybody can achieve Buddhahood. Visitors are welcome to enter the shrines but must remember to remove their shoes and hats before entering.
A visit to the museum was really impressive. We marvelled at a very intricate scene craved from wood. The attention to detail is humbling. On display were also Buddhist texts written on a single grain of rice or even more impressive a single hair. The exhibits are changed regularly. Attached to the museum is a souvenir shop.
The temple has an impressive 330 seat auditorium. The auditorium comes equipped with large screen and audio-visual facilities. Adjacent to this is the conference room with a capacity of 180. It also includes audio-visual facilities as well as simultaneous translation equipment. Both these facilities are available for hire.
The Pilgrim Lodge offers comfortable accommodation and is situated by the Lotus Pond, gardens and Bodhi trees. Bodhi trees have special significance for Buddhists as Buddha has attained enlightenment sitting under one of these trees.
The Dining Hall serves up a very delicious vegetarian meal daily for $9 per person. If you’ve missed lunch you can enjoy a light meal and beverages at the Dew Drop Inn situated at the entrance.
There are a few codes they ask visitors to adhere to. Please wear appropriate clothes, meaning no shorts, singlets or thongs. No picnics are allowed on the Temple grounds. Don’t bring any meat, fish, non-vegetarian products or alcohol into the Temple grounds. No photography or video recording inside the buildings and no pets allowed on the Temple grounds.
To find the Temple exit the freeway at Five Islands Road and follow the signs. More photos.