Exactly a week ago I had the opportunity to visit The Fo Guang Shan Buddha Memorial Center in Kaohsiung City, Taiwan on our celebratory moon day off. I took a fair amount of pictures as you can see. Stunning, peaceful, massive, are just a few words that come to mind in remembrance. However, I couldn't help but take amusement in the fact there was a Starbucks in the main pavilion. Buddha likes his coffee too! If ever in Taiwan this place is a must see for your travel list. The complex stretches out beyond the main entrance. Be prepared to do a fair share of walking. I enjoyed this fact. In each pagoda there were various Buddhist themes to take in or little shops to wonder around. I really appreciated the fact the center catered to people of all ages, especially families. There is even a side area for children to enjoy. Through out the center the nuns hosted many of the various sites on the grounds. I didn't see any monks though. Not sure why that is. Below I have a further description posted in regards to the site.
From the brochure:
"The Buddha Memorial Center, situated at Dashu District, Kaohsiung City, is built on 100 hectares of land, and houses the Buddha's tooth relic that was presented to Venerable Master Hsing Yun by the Tibetan Lama, Kunga Dorje Rinpoche, who had kept the relic in his safekeeping for 30 years. The Kunga Dorje Rinpoche was touched by the efforts of Fo Guang Shan, an active propagation center of Humanistic Buddhism. Construction of the Buddha Memorial Center commenced in 2003 and took nine years to complete. The building is made possible with the support of thousands of temples and millions on benefactores. It comprises eight pagodas in the front, a big Buddha stature in the rear, the Vulture Peak in the south, and the Jetvana Grove in the north. It encompasses traditional and modern features which fulfills the functional needs of culture, education, and spiritual practice.
The main buildings are laid out along a central axis from east to west in the following order: the Front Hall, the Eight Pagadas, the Grand Photo Terrace, the Bodhi Wisdom Concourse, The Main Hall and the Fo Guang Big Buddha.
Like a Buddhist university, the Buddha Memorial Center aims to offer spiritual refreshment and bring harmony to society by means of culture and art."