OMG Facts About The Penang Waterfall Hill Temple

  • 06 Feb 2020

The Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Hilltop Temple is one of the oldest Hindu shrines in Penang and was built in dedication to Lord Murugan.

Its hilltop location is one of the main destinations of devotees during the annual Thaipusam festival, which is celebrated in a grand scale. The silver chariot procession begins from Kovil Veedu (House of Temple) in Penang Street on Thaipusam eve, and travels along the roads of Georgetown, before reaching the Waterfall Temple.

Thaipusam then starts early morning on Thaipusam day, when the Holy Vel is carried in a procession from the Queen Street Maha Mariamman Temple, and arrives at the Hill Top Temple to be venerated with a special pooja.

Thereafter, thousands of devotees carry kavadis and other offerings to Lord Balathandayuthapani as an act of penance and for boons grated. 

Here, Astro Ulagam lists down some unknown facts about the Penang Waterfall Hill Temple that is bound to be mindblowing! 

- Circa 1800, the temple was situated at the base of the Great Waterfall at the Botanical Garden, Penang and was moved when the waterfall was closed off to public in 1904.

- The previous shrine is said to have been erected by convict laborers who built the early aquaduct from the Waterfall in 1804 - 1805.

- The present temple was built in 1985. 

- The temple's design and construction was based on a mixture of Chola and Pallava architectural designs, which are prominent South Indian dynasties known for temple buildings.

- The Waterfall Hill Temple’s sculpting works are credited to P.V Krishnamoorthy Stabathy, who has provided his artistry talents in more than 150 temples in Malaysia.

- The 7-storey high Raja Gopuram is based on Chola architecture design and is secured with Burmese teak main doors measuring 18 feet x 11 feet, with thickness of 7 ½ inches. 

- All the doors of the temple were made in Trikadayur, Tamil Nadu.

- One of the uniqueness of the temple, is the free standing temple bell tower, which was also designed by P.V Krishnamoorthy Stabathy. The bell can be operated both mechanically, and manually. 

- There are many other temples located around the Waterfall Hill Temple. They are the Arulmigu Sree Ganeshar Temple at the foothill of stairways leading to the hilltop. Next to it, is the Edumban temple and also the Arulmigu Naganathar temple. 

Astro Ulagam's Thaipusam 2020 LIVE is going to be bigger and better this year! Stay tuned with us from 5pm, 7th February to 10pm, 8th February 2020 (Msian Time) to get LIVE updates from temples across Malaysia. Visit for more info.​

Watch our mini documentary series 'Road to Thaipusam' to rediscover Batu Caves Murugan and the true meaning behind the annual celebration of Thaipusam in Malaysia.

Take a look at our mini documentary series 'Heroes of Thaipusam' to get a glimpse of the real champions behind the celebration every year.

Picture Credit:


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