The backgound of Temple of Holy Marquis is highly related to the hisory and development of Nine Dragon City (Hau Wong Temple). The story of Nine Dragon City seems like a magnet to those who want to explore the real world of the old world of Hong Kong. The plot began with three main characters are Holy Marquis (Yang Liangjie), Emperor Bing (Zhao Bing) and his brother Emperor Duangzong (Zhao Qi) plus a female royal member from Southern Song Dynasty who are the last emperors in Southern Song dynasty.
During the last days of Southern Song dynasty, The Mongols (they were called by the people in Mainland China as barbarians) attacked the mainland and the company of last emperors flee from North to South. Finally, they settled down at Sacred Hill (Sung Wong Toi) in which the hill is demolished due to land reclamation. The mould which is originally placed on the hill was taken to Sacred Hill Park (Song Wong Toi Park). The exact of location of the hill is not known to me that would probably entice my investigation. The mould you can see today actually a scaled one to build Kai Tak Airport (a site of the old airport) next to Prince Edward West. What happened to other parts? It would trigger curiosity of people. The answer is that some parts of the mould was actuallly trimmed down by Japanese soldiers during war period. They use the stones from this mould and the stones from White Crane Mountain (Pak Hok Shan) where Chinese Christian Cemetry is situated.
In the close proximity of Sacred Hill Park (Song Wong Toi Park), the body of a female royal member accompanying with the last emperors of Southern Song dynasty is believed to be buried in a tomb behind Holy Trinity Cathedral which is an intersting building mixing Chinese with Western architectural style. The tomb must be removed because of the structure. Actually, you can find another interesting remain at Lomond Road next to Prince Edward Road West and besides St. Teresa Hospital. This remian is believed to be a temple villagers living around that area established to commenmorate the two emperors. However, a shadow on the fact troubling me. The Chinese text written from right to left indicates that it is a temple to worship The King of the highest. The text has the same text to a God called "Xuanwu/Yuen Tin Sheung Tai". It could mean a temple built for worshipping this god. Who knows!
Anyway, Temple of Holy Marquis (Hau Wong Temple) is still a mystery to locals whether it was built to commemorate Holy Marquis (Yang Liangjie) and locals start to worship him as a god or the temple was built for someone else. Generally speaking, the temple is commonly recognised as a temple to worship Holy Marquis (Yang Liangjie).
Another important note to a recent archaeological discovery under the bridge at Olympic Garden next to Prince Edward Road West due to the extension of MTR lines. They dig out pottery and things from the well.
Hau Wong Road has an interesting story to tell. The word 'Hau' is a surname. 'Wong' is a title of an emperor. Actually, there are two ways to write 'Wong' in Chinese. One is a simple one and another is a complex one. The complex one is for the emperor and the word was not allowed to use in civil society unless they want their head being chopped off. Hau Wong Road is actually a street by locals naming a person they use to commemorate. In the past, this road was full of merchandises. So, this street attracts the attention of mafia. The mafia draw out their profit making plan on that street. A police man cleaned up the street and no crime rate was there ever since! People commemorate this guy and make up the name "Hau Wong" for him. (source: Wikipedia - Chinese version)
Kowloon Walled City is a very interesting part of history of Hong Kong. Nine Dragon City (Kowloon Walled City) is now a park and the Alms House remains there!
Other stuff is particular interesting to history enthusiasts such as Lok Sin Tong Primary School (an archway of the school entrance) on Nam Kok Road next to Carpenter Road, a coffin store on Fuk Lo Tsuen Road next to Carpenter Road, Nga Tsin Long Road (local market bazzar), Argle Street Playground (occasssionaly some Cantonese Opera under a bamboo theatre), Bishop Walsh Primary School (locals rumored some ghost story around this school and the cemetery behind at Junction Road), Bishop Ford Memorial School (Pui Man Street), Mun Sang College (Junction Road) and Mei Tung Estate (Tung Tau Tsuen Road).
Honestly, there is not much to expect in this temple. This temple may trigger your interest because of its historical background. However, I would like to present the essentials for you:
A debris of a banner of Love Village (Pok Oi Tsuen). Well, I went there once time with my grandpa when I was a child. I remembered that I walked through a narrow path between squattered houses. That's all I am able to recall. Please visit the official website of Hong Kong Memory for more details.
* "One Stroke Goose" written in Chinese Calligraphy at the temple pavilion (it is believed that this calligraphy was written by an imperial general with his fist)
* "One Stoke Crane" in Chinese Calligraphy behind the main hall of the temple (it is believed that this calligraphy was written by an imperial general with his fist)
* Poem Corner
* Replica of weapons displayed at both side of Main Hall entrance
* Shiwan Ware (near the roof of Main Hall entrance)
* Stone plaues placed at both sides of Main Hall entrance from Qing Dynasty (1644 to 1912 A.D.)
* The statute of Holy Marquis (Hau Wong)
* Wishing Board
* Wooden plaques at the porch of Main Hall entrance
Before the entrance to Temple of Holy Marquis (Hau Wong Temple), you will see a stair leading somewhere. This is the way leading to a toilet which I would not recommend tourists to use because of its poor hygiene. I knew there is a toilet there since I was a child. My mum told me some drug users gathered and enjoyed their 'meals' there! I thought the hidden gem should be behind the temple so I guessed this stairs should lead me up to the hidden gem. However, it is not the story.
Finally, you can see an archway which is the entrance of the temple. Afterwards, you will find three entrances. The first one in the middle is the entrance of Main Hall. The second one on your left is going into a hall accommodates Buddha statues as well as spiritual tablets of other people's ancestors. There are an array of stone tablets from Qing Dynasty (1644 to 1912 A.D.), sitting at both side of Main Hall entrance, which are hidden gems of the temple. Opposite Main Hall entrance is the location of temple map and introduction of the temple. The entrance on your right lead you to other hidden gems.
When you pass through the archway, you will see "One Stroke Goose" written in Chinese Calligraphy inside the temple pavilion. It is believed that this calligraphy was written by an imperial general with his fist! Do you believe that?
Besides this stunning stuff, you will see Wishing Board where people wrote their wishes on a paper and stabbed on the board and wish the gods in this temple can hear their prayers.
Besides Wishing Board, here you go the stairs leading up to "One Stoke Crane" in Chinese Calligraphy behind the main hall of the temple (it is believed that this calligraphy was written by an imperial general with his fist)!
I hope you will hit the jackpot and see some Taoism Paper Offerings (Zhizha)!
Opposite Temple of Holy Marquis (Hau Wong Temple) is a toilet with better hygiene. It is located at Carpenter Road Park next to Tung Tau Tsuen Road facing Mei Tung House (after Gate 12). When you walk on Tung Tau Tsuen Road and you will see a futuristic look toilet inside the park!
Alrighty! Final words. The next question is finding local food to feed your hunger. Of course, you can just find some food stores at Kowloon City Plaza which is the opposite direction of Gate 12 in the park. They are just too ordinary! Let's grab some interesting food by passing through this mall straight! After exiting the mall, you will find a Zebra Crossing on Carpenter Road. On your right (opposite to the direction of Lion Rock Road), Nan Ying is a very popular Indonesian snack (hot food) store. A very tiny store but well known to some locals for its tasty food! When you walk through Lion Rock Road, you will see Nga Tsin Wai Road which is a food street. Actually, Nine Dragon City (Kowloon City) is very famous for Thai food e.g. Wong Chun Chun Thai Restaurant at 23 Tak Ku Ling Road. Literally, you can find food at nearly every freaking corners of Kowloon City and you won't go hungry unless the odd is against you or the town gone dead!
On Lung Kong Road (towards Prince Edward Road West). Don't forget Nga Tsin Long Road (adjacent to Kowloon City Market and Cooked Food Centre). A small market on the street worth a visit because it gives you a picture of local culture. On 3rd floor, you will find cooked food as well as local market activities on ground floor!