Although the exterior of the Longshan Temple may appear to be somewhat modest, the sanctuary is one of the most well known architectural landmarks of the Taiwanese town of Lukang. Built in the 18th century, this Buddhist sanctuary on the San Min Road is not only the oldest temple in Lukang but also the oldest in the whole of Taiwan. Chinese settlers originally built it for their important goddess, Guan Yin, who led her followers to the island of Taiwan.
The strong September winds and the security of the local people in the old part of town gave rise to the unusual, winding layout of Chinseng Lane. Its many curves were designed to make it difficult for thieves to gain entrance to this part of town and also to reduce the severity of the treacherous winds.
In the heart of Lukang, the China of old still continues to thrive and even today, the former merchantís houses are a captivating sight. The highly developed skills of the former Chinese craftsmen are evident in many buildings of the old town such as Gin Mern Hall.
Due to its wealth of historic buildings and also to its many flourishing arts and crafts, today Lukang is one of the most fascinating towns in Taiwan.
Global Treasures - History's Most Protected Monuments - Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration. Places as unique and diverse as the wilds of East Africa's Serengeti, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Baroque cathedrals of Latin America make up our world's heritage. Join us as we explore one of these protected monuments.