Location: Sandakan, Sabah
Ratings ** Worth checking out if you are doing the Sandakan Heritage Trail.
Lost Ratings **** Not on the normal city tour.
Visitors on a city tour of Sandakan will inevitably be taken to the Puh Jih Shih Temple, the largest Chinese temple in Sabah, and a place to get a great view of Sandakan. However, if you have an interest in temples, there are a few other Chinese temples in Sandakan which are worth a visit.
Top among these would be the Goddess of Mercy Temple, or the Kun Yam Temple (as the Goddess of Mercy is called in Cantonese). The Kun Yam Temple is a small, nondescript temple, hidden away on a small hill slope. Few publications mention this temple, but get a copy of the Sandakan Heritage Trail from the tourism office in Sandakan, and you will see that it is listed as number 6 on the heritage walk. It is located near to the St Michael’s Church. If you are on a city tour, and would like to see this temple, ask your guide to take you there. (If he doesn’t know where it is, show him the Heritage Trail map!)
The temple was built in 1868 and therefore should be the oldest building in Sandakan, although some brochures point out that the Sam Sing Kung Temple is the oldest (built in 1885). There is not much to see inside the temple, but rather, it is the psychedelic colours of the walls that make this my favourite.