February 2018. As with most Chinese cities there are plenty of temples scattered around Quanzhou. I consider myself something of a temple veteran, so decided to limit myself to the magnificent Guandi Temple on Tumen Street.
February 2018. Guandi Temple is dedicated to Guan Yu, a Three Kingdoms general deified as The Taoist God of War. Famed throughout China as a pillar of loyalty and righteousness, inside you’ll find statues of the old guy and various wall panels recounting the many tales of his life. I really love the architecture, an odd mix of classical Chinese and 1970s Sheffield steelworks.
February 2018. The whole Guandi Temple area is awash with chattering merchants and irritating beggars, many of whom aren’t shy in coming up to you to shake their tin cups in your face! Interestingly, an old guy that was bothering me was shooed away by this group of female vendors.
February 2018. There was also a sleeping woman propped up in a chair that was so ludicrously old she looked mummified! So perfectly still was she in fact that after I’d discreetly snatched my photo I suddenly wondered if she might be dead.
Guandi Temple, February 2018. Guandi Temple’s smoky interior is small and modestly decorated but highly atmospheric as worshippers scurry about praying, burning incense and leaving fruit donations. Just take a seat on the wooden benches in the corner and watch it all unfold.
February 2018. For the truly negligible fee of 3RMB, you can buy yourself a wedge of prayer papers and liberate them in Guandi Temple’s furnace. All in the name of good fortune, health, general prosperity etc. Guandi Temple is free to enter and open daily.
For more on this under-the-radar city, check out my other reports from around Quanzhou.
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