Saturday, September 18, 2010

The House With No Nails

by Gary Orona

The gate of Chi Lin Nunnery

Situated  at Diamond Hill in Kowloon,  The Chi Lin Nunnery is an old structure founded in 1934 and rebuilt in 1990 following the style of Tang Dynasty traditional architecture.

A spacious court lined up with beautiful bonsais will lead you through the main gate of the Chi Lin Nunnery.  This entrance opens up to a grander court where a huge lantern welcomes you.  The court is also lined up with potted bonsais.  The Nunnery is flanked by two Lotus ponds.                                              Passing the huge lantern, the grandeur of the nunnery is a feast to the eyes.  It is a masssive structure and each part is magnificently done with perfection. The wood frames of the buildings were built without the use of any iron nails.   This type of construction is based on the traditional Chinese architecture that uses special interlocking systems cut into the wood to hold them in place.The parts are joined together with wooden pegs and dowels and cut with presicion.

Although Chi Lin Nunnery is mainly a Buddhist temple, and as it is, a nunnery, it is open to the public to showcase the fine Chinese art and culture.  It boasts of its serene gardens, ponds and serves as an outdoor museum to present Tang Dynasty's unique and beautiful style of architecture.


  1. Gary, I love how informative this subject matter is on the way you wrote it, also this photo you took of this place, I find, is astonishingly . . . grand!

  2. the huge lantern in front of the nunnery is such a treat to the eyes, wow, so hard to believe it is built without any nails at all, amazing.

  3. Gary, I never knew this about the nunnery. Another place I want to visit and didn't have the time when I was in HK. How gorgeous is this spot, wow. Thanks for the info and photos.

  4. Jo, you should really include this place in your itinerary on your next visit to HK. I will be posting more "places to see in HK" to give you more idea on your next trip here. Or, to make you remember once again the places here that you've been to.

    Thanks for your comment.

  5. Lon, as a Buddhist, I am sure you will appreciate this place when you see it. It is very conducive to meditation.

    Thanks again for dropping by.

  6. Betchai, that lantern is one of the many things that will amaze you. Everything in this place is detailed to perfection.