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The History of Sri Mariamman Temple Singapore
Sri Mariamman Temple is the oldest Hindu temple in Singapore, located in the Chinatown area. It was built in 1827 by Indian pioneers who settled in the area. The temple was initially a simple structure made of wood and attap (thatch), but over the years, it has been renovated and expanded to become the grand temple it is today.
The temple is dedicated to the goddess Mariamman, who is revered for her ability to cure diseases and protect against evil spirits. In the early days of Singapore, the temple served as a place of worship for Indian immigrants who came to the city to work as traders and laborers.
Top 3 Reasons to Visit Sri Mariamman Temple
1) Cultural significance: Sri Mariamman Temple is a living monument to Singapore’s multicultural heritage. It is a place where visitors can learn about Hinduism and its customs, as well as gain a deeper appreciation for the Indian community’s contributions to Singapore’s development.
2) Architectural marvel: The temple’s stunning gopuram (tower) and intricate carvings and sculptures are a feast for the eyes. The vibrant colors and ornate details make it a must-visit for architecture enthusiasts.
3) Spiritual oasis: Sri Mariamman Temple is a place of peace and reflection in the heart of the city. Visitors can take a moment to quiet their minds and soak in the temple’s serene atmosphere, as well as witness the daily rituals and offerings performed by devotees.
Architecture and Design
Sri Mariamman Temple in Singapore is a true architectural marvel. The temple’s design is a unique blend of Hindu and Dravidian styles, and its intricate carvings and sculptures are a testament to the skilled craftsmanship of the Indian artisans who built it. Here are some of the temple’s unique features:
One of the most striking features of Sri Mariamman Temple is its towering gopuram or entrance tower. The gopuram is adorned with intricate carvings of deities and mythical creatures, and its vibrant colors and ornate details make it a popular spot for photography.
Sri Mariamman Temple has several mandapams or halls for devotees to offer prayers and perform rituals. The Kalyana Mandapam or marriage hall is particularly impressive, with its detailed carvings and colorful ceiling.
The vimana or tower above the main sanctum sanctorum is another impressive feature of the temple’s design. It is adorned with elaborate carvings of deities and mythical creatures, and its colorful dome is a sight to behold.
Goddess Mariamman Shrine
The main shrine of the temple is dedicated to the goddess Mariamman. The shrine is intricately carved and painted, and the goddess’s image is adorned with jewels and flowers.
How to Go to Sri Mariamman Temple
Sri Mariamman Temple is located in the heart of Chinatown in Singapore, making it easily accessible by public transportation. Here are some ways to get to the temple:
- By MRT: The nearest MRT line to Sri Mariamman Temple is the Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL), visitors can alight at the Maxwell station (TE18) and take Exit A. (The new station opened since 13 November 2022) From there, it’s a short 5-10 minute walk to the temple.
- By bus: Take bus numbers 2, 12, 33, 54, 63, 80, 124, 143, 147, 190, 520, or CT8 and alight at the Chinatown Point bus stop. From there, it’s just a few minutes’ walk to the temple.
- By taxi or ride-hailing service: Simply input “Sri Mariamman Temple” as your destination and you’ll be dropped off right at the temple’s entrance.
There is no entrance fee to visit Sri Mariamman Temple. However, visitors are encouraged to make a donation to help with the temple’s upkeep and maintenance.
Temple Manners and Etiquette Guide
As a place of worship, Sri Mariamman Temple has certain rules and customs that visitors should observe to show respect and reverence for the temple and its deities. Here are some guidelines to follow:
- Shoulders must be covered
- Trousers or skirts must cover at least knees
- Avoid anything too tight, short or revealing
- Temples provide shawls, cover-ups, and wraps for those who are not appropriately dressed
- Remove footwear outside the temple
- Temples have designated spaces for footwear to be left safely
- Do not enter the shrines or sanctums
- Do not sit with feet pointing towards the Deities, priests, or others
- Hugging and other demonstrations of affection between adults are not appropriate
- Refrain from talking loudly
- Treat the priests with respect
- Smoking and consumption of alcohol are prohibited in the temple and temple grounds.
The temple is conveniently accessible by public transportation, and the best way to get here is by taking the MRT and alighting at the Maxwell station (TE18) and take Exit A.
One of the great things about visiting Sri Mariamman Temple is that there is no entrance fee. However, it is important to note that visitors are expected to follow the temple manners and etiquette to show respect for the temple and its deities. This includes dressing modestly, observing silence, and not littering.
We also highly recommend that you take some time to immerse yourself in the temple’s peaceful and spiritual atmosphere. The best way to do this is by observing the customs and traditions of the temple, such as lighting incense and offering prayers to the deities.
Don’t forget to also take a moment to appreciate the temple’s unique blend of Hindu and Dravidian architectural styles, intricate carvings, and sculptures. And of course, a visit to Sri Mariamman Temple would not be complete without taking some stunning photos of the gopuram or entrance tower, which is a true architectural marvel.
Sri Mariamman Temple is not only a significant landmark in Singapore’s history but also a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in culture, architecture, and spirituality.
244 South Bridge Road, Singapore 058793, Singapore
Daily 5–11.30am, 5–8.45pm