Indian temples in Malaysia with stunning Hindu architecture

Temples are places of worship for Hindus all over the world. Apart from being the place where art and history thrives, they play a significant role in Hindu cultural identity. In Malaysia, places of worship like these unique mosques and colourful Chinese temples attract tens of thousands of tourists each year. Apart from these, there are also some stunningly beautiful Indian temples that add to the rich cultural diversity of Malaysia.

Here’s a list of 13 Indian temples in Malaysia with stunning Hindu architectural excellence worth a visit for your next trip.

1. Sri Shakti Devasthanam Temple, Bukit Rotan – all 51 forms of goddess Sakthi in one place

Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: Sri Sakthi Temple

Located at the outskirts of Kuala Selangor, in the small town Bukit Rotan, the Sri Shakti Devasthanam Temple is so majestic that you will be mesmerised by its beauty every single time you visit. The RM12 million project took four years to complete and it was opened to the public in 2013 after the consecration ceremony.

Malaysian Indian temple interior architecture
Image credit: Sri Sakthi Temple

This temple is certainly one of the finest in Malaysia due to its stunning architectural design. It is built using a rare and complex sculptural technique known as Thundu Pattirippu Pathroba Pathram from India. It has a five-tiered rajagopuram – the royal entrance tower – that stands 74 feet tall, possibly making it one of the tallest temple gopurams in Malaysia. 

Dedicated to the goddess Sakthi Maari Amman, this breathtaking monument is said to be the only place with all 51 forms of goddess Shakti carved along the temple’s internal corridor.

Malaysian Indian Temple interior architecture
Image credit: Sri Sakthi Temple

The main entrance of the temple has a sculptured granite frame that is said to weigh as much as 4 tonnes and is 18 feet tall. Overall, with the intense labour of approximately 1.2 million hours, 10 million bricks, 20,000 tonnes of steel bars, 1,500 cubic metres of concrete, 100 tonnes of granite and 25 tonnes of teakwood, the final piece was completed. 

Entry into the temple is free, however, taking photos or videos inside it is prohibited.

Address: Jalan Kuala Selangor, Bukit Rotan, 45700 Bukit Rotan, Selangor
Opening hours: 7am-12pm & 5pm-9pm, Daily
Contact: Sri Shakti Devasthanam Temple website

2. Sri Maha Mariamman Devasthanam Midlands, Shah Alam – resembles the Meenakshi Amman temple in India 

Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: Marriott Bonvoy Tours & Activities

Mimicking the marvellous Meenakshi Amman temple in India, Sri Maha Mariamman Devasthanam Midlands is a must-visit if you are ever in Shah Alam, Selangor. 

The former is located in the historic city of Madurai, Tamil Nadu, and is one of the largest temples in India. It has four main gopurams, each facing a different cardinal direction. Similarly, the latter possesses four five-tiered gopurams in every cardinal direction. 

Intricate details of Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: Jivitha Saminathan via Google Maps

Famously known as the iCity temple, this architectural wonder is one of the few monuments that still carries the estate name “Midlands”, or Ladang Midlands, a former rubber plantation area where Indian inhabitants lived during the colonial era.

Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: @vic_nash04 via Instagram

Dedicated to the goddess Mariamman, the temple has a big statue of the goddess Meenakshi at the entrance and is now a popular destination for Hindu weddings due to its eye-catching designs and stunning artwork.

Address: Seksyen 7, 40000 Shah Alam, Selangor
Opening hours: 7am-11am & 7pm-10pm, Daily
Contact: Sri Maha Mariamman Devasthanam Midlands Facebook

3. Arulmigu Sri Rajakaliamman Glass Temple, Johor Bahru – Malaysia’s only glass temple

Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: a a via Google Maps

It is not very often that we get to see a temple made of glass – and it comes as an even bigger surprise that the world’s first-ever glass temple, the Arulmigu Sri Rajakaliamman Glass Temple, is located on our shores.

Indian temple glass embellishments
Image credit: Neo Tean via Facebook

This popular tourist attraction located in Johor Bahru has its name in the Malaysia Book of Records as the first and only glass temple in the nation, and it is said that at least 90% of the temple is embellished by a mosaic of 300,000 pieces of red, blue, yellow, green, purple and white glass. The intricate artwork makes the temple shine bright like a diamond, especially in the evenings.

Indian temple glass embellishments
Image credit: Neo Tean via Facebook

One noteworthy fact about the temple is that it is fully air-conditioned. It contains 10 gold-finished sculptures and 10 white marble statues each standing at 120cm tall.

For those who are planning to visit a temple for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, this place is highly recommended and you should add it to your itinerary. It is believed that the inspiration to build a temple out of glass originated from the head priest or the Guru’s trip to Bangkok, where he was captivated by the glass artwork at the entrance of a temple.

Address: Jalan Tun Abdul Razak 1/1, Wadi Hana, 80300 Johor Bahru, Johor
Opening hours: 7am-12pm & 7pm-10pm, Daily

4. Om Sri Maha Athi Nageswary Amman Temple, Puchong – with 354 snakes carvings

Image credit: @sjn.photographer via Instagram

If you are looking to visit a temple that is both colourful and uniquely designed, then the Om Sri Maha Athi Nageswary Amman Temple located in Puchong, Selangor has to be on your list.

The temple is fairly new. It was founded in 2013 by Datuk K Rajan and officially consecrated in February 2016. It can be spotted from the Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong expressway near Puchong Gateway.

Indian Temples in Malaysia (1)
Image credit: @km0andbyond via Instagram

The temple has an eight-tiered multi-coloured gopuram built based on Dravidian-style architecture, with 354 snakes carved around the temple. It also has a 65-feet Shiva lingam in the centre, behind the main gopuram along with several giant seven-headed king cobra design pillars with different goddesses on them.

Image credit: @medythiyagu via Instagram

The temple is dedicated to the snake goddess Nageswary. Devotees visit the temple to pray for various reasons including fertility, the curing of diseases, winning over negative thoughts and enemies, and to get rid of naga dosham – bad luck inherited from forefathers or caused by the Hindu planets Rahu and Ketu.

Address: 5, LDP, 47100 Puchong, Selangor
Opening hours: 7am-9.30pm, Daily
Contact: Om Sri Maha Athi Nageswary Amman Temple Facebook

5. Sri Kandaswamy Temple, Brickfields – more than 100 years old

Indian temples in Malaysia - gopuram
Image credit: @plateauce via Instagram

For more than a century, the Sri Kandaswamy Temple in Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur, has been a prominent site for the Jaffna Tamil community or Sri Lankan Tamils in Malaysia. Founded in 1902, this temple is one of the few that was built with Sri Lankan Tamil architecture.

The Kandaswamy Temple is also known as the Scott Road temple because it is located along Jalan Scott, which also has other Hindu temples that were relocated to give way for development projects. 

Indian temples in Malaysia - gopuram details
Image credit: @lifeatklsentral_ via Instagram

This temple also has a five-tier gopuram; however, the artwork is simply superb and one of a kind. The gopuram is accompanied by the six forms of the primary deity Kandaswamy, another name for Lord Murugan, on both sides.

Indian temples in Malaysia - back wall of the temple
Image credit: @photowizard2013 via Instagram

This temple is said to be one of the most orthodox temples in Malaysia because the rituals are conducted by strictly following the rules of the Saiva Agama Scriptures – one of the major Hindu denominations or schools of thought. 

Address: Jalan Scott, Brickfields, 50470 Kuala Lumpur
Opening hours: Mon-Thur 5.30am-9pm | Fri-Sun 5.30am-9.30pm
Contact: Sri Kandaswamy Temple website

6. Sri Marathandavar Aalayam, Maran – named after a tree

Indian temples in Malaysia - temple entrance
Image credit: @mugilanneevash via Instagram

Unlike most temples that rely on the grand rajagopuram for visual appeal, the 120-year-old Sri Marathandavar Aalayam in Maran, Pahang, come with a unique roof and pillars built based on the Dravidian architecture. The hexagonal roof of the temple is symbolic of the number six, which is an auspicious digit for Lord Murugan who also goes by the name Arumugan or the Lord with six faces.

Indian temples in Malaysia - temple gopuram
Image credit: @aandreaten via Instagram

The primary deity of the temple, Lord Marathandavar, another form of Lord Murugan, got His special name from an old Banyan tree where his shrine was first worshipped by devotees. The word Marathandavar, which means deity of the tree, is a blend of the Tamil words maram which means tree and andavar which means lord. 

Indian temples in Malaysia - overhead view of temple
Image credit: via Instagram

The banyan tree, which is over a hundred years old, was believed to have snapped in 2016. Prior to this period, the tree could be seen standing tall above the crown of the temple.

This temple is away from the city and it’s surrounded by forest and oil palm plantations. If you are planning to visit this temple, it is important to take note that the temple experiences flooding issues during the monsoon season. So, mid-year is an ideal time to visit.

Indian temples in Malaysia - wishing tree
The wishing tree.

Image credit: @mugilanneevash via Instagram

Address: Jalan Kuantan, Jerantut, 26500 Maran, Pahang
Opening hours: 5.30am-7pm, Daily

7. Sri Maha Sakthi Mohambigai Amman Temple, Kuala Lumpur – the success story behind Mid Valley Megamall

Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: Douglas MacKallor via Google Maps

In the megacity of Mid Valley lies a small temple next to one of the most famous shopping malls in Kuala Lumpur. The Sri Maha Sakthi Mohambigai Amman Temple is a century-old temple that’s thought to be the success story behind the Mid Valley Megamall.

Being a small temple, this hidden gem can be hard to spot from a distance and even when you are passing by the road it’s easy to miss. But once you figure out its location, this will be one of the temples you’ll keep wanting to visit to marvel at awe at the details of its interiors.

Indian temples in Malaysia - arches
Image credit: @rubxn2411 via Instagram

From the outside, the temple may look simple, but when you step in, you will get to see how carefully each sculpture and wall is carved by the craftsmen. This temple is dedicated to the goddess Moogambigai who is the embodiment of the goddesses Parvathy – the consort of Lord Shiva, Lakshmi – the consort of Lord Vishnu and Saraswathy – the consort of Lord Brahma.

The intricate designs of the statues and the pillars along with the two guardians or boothangals at the entrance are the main attractions within the temple. 

Indian temples in Malaysia - temple interior
Image adapted from: @hthithanhtruc via Instagram

Legend has it that in the early days when the developer was planning to build the Mid Valley Megamall, he had plans to get rid of this temple from Mid Valley City, as it is now called. But it is believed that on the day of the groundbreaking ceremony of the shopping mall, there was a power outage which was thought to be a punishment from the goddess Moogambigai for the ill-will of the developer. 

Realising his mistake, the mall developer was then said to have apologised to the goddess and promised to build a new temple next to the mall as you see it today. Locals also say that the Mid Valley Megamall is so successful because of the goddess’ blessings.

Address: Mid Valley Megamall, 75, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City, 58000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
Opening hours: 7am-9pm, Daily
Contact: Sri Maha Sakthi Mohambigai Amman Temple Facebook

8. Sri Selva Vinayagar Temple, Prai – the golden temple of Penang

 Indian temples in Malaysia - temple entrance
Image adapted from: Soonchan Park via Google Maps

Penang is home to countless Hindu holy sites. Among them, the Sri Selva Vinayagar Temple in Prai has become a place worth visiting for a number of reasons.

Indian temples in Malaysia - overhead view of temple
Image credit: @davidstloh via Instagram

The unique, double-storey temple with a complex-like structure, is dedicated to Lord Ganesha who is revered as the primary Hindu God. It was built as a wooden temple some 103 years ago and was maintained by the Prai railway and port labourers in the early days. The temple was then reconstructed in 1967 before undergoing several renovations in subsequent years.

Indian temples in Malaysia - gopuram
Image credit: @davidstloh via Instagram

It is said that public road works and the building of an elevated bridge in the area resulted in the temple staying 5 feet below the road level, which led to other issues such as cracks on the ceiling and the Vimana – the structure above the inner sanctum and the lack of an access road at the main entrance.

Indian temple interior view
Image credit: S. Agilan via Google Maps

Due to these reasons, the temple was then reconstructed to its present-day design with golden gopurams that are estimated to have cost RM3 million. This South Indian architecture has since garnered a lot of attention from people and it is one of the must-visit spots in Penang.

Address: Jalan Perai, Taman Inderawasih, 13600 Butterworth, Pulau Pinang
Opening hours: 24 Hours, Daily

9. Sri Maha Mariamman Devasthanam, Kuala Lumpur – the oldest temple in KL

Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: Boris A. Trivan via Facebook

Founded in 1873 by the late K Thamboosamy Pillai, a prominent Indian community leader from the pre-independence years, the Sri Maha Mariamman Devasthanam in Kuala Lumpur is a historic sight for Hindus in Malaysia.

It is the oldest Hindu temple in the capital city of our country and was built in a traditional South Indian architecture. The five-tier, 75-feet-high rajagopuram was intricately sculpted with 228 idols, making the main entrance one of the most attractive parts of the temple.

Indian temple interior design
Image credit: WenHong Zhuang via Google Maps

The Sri Maha Mariamman Devasthanam is also popular for the annual Silver Chariot procession for Thaipusam when Lord Murugan was given the powerful Vel, a spear, by his mother, goddess Parvathy to destroy the evil demon Soorapadman.

Indian temple in Malaysia
Image credit: holidify

The chariot carrying the statue of Lord Murugan departs this temple every year with the blessings of the goddess Mariamman and reaches Batu Caves with an elaborate celebration.

Address: Jalan Tun H S Lee, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
Opening hours: Sun-Fri 6am-8.30pm | Sat 6am-9pm
Contact: Sri Maha Mariamman Devasthanam Facebook

10. Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Temple, Penang – has more stairs than Batu Caves

Indian temples in Malaysia - gopuram entrance
Image credit: @mukesh_sivan via Instagram

Most Malaysians are aware of the Batu Caves temple where annual Thaipusam celebrations take place on a massive scale. But up in the waterfall hills of Penang lies another famous temple also known for Thaipusam celebrations. 

The Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Temple, also known as waterfall hill temple or Thanneer Malai among Hindus, is built with 14th and 15th-century architectural styles of the Chola and Pandya kingdoms in India.

Indian temples in Malaysia - view of city from temple
Image credit: @chalan.781 via Instagram

Costing up to RM10 million, the architectural excellence has a 70-feet-tall rajagopuram with seven tiers and to get to it, visitors and devotees have to climb up 513 steps of stairs, which is almost twice the number of steps of the stairs in Batu Caves – 272 steps. 

The temple is also the second-biggest focus point for the Thaipusam celebration in Malaysia after Batu Caves, and a golden chariot worth RM3 million can be spotted during the procession.

Indian temples in Malaysia - temple interior
Image credit: @talunglee via Instagram

The Balathandayuthapani Temple is also said to be the largest Murugan temple outside India and it is closely related to the six most sacred abodes of Lord Murugan in India. The consecration ceremony of the newly built temple took place in 2012 and was attended by state leaders, prominent Hindu priests from six main Murugan temples in South India, and chief priests of temples in Bali.

Address: Jalan Air Terjun 10350 George Town, Penang
Opening hours: 6am-9pm, Daily
Contact: Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Temple Facebook

11. Sri Sundaraja Perumal Temple, Klang – oldest Vaishnavite temple in Malaysia

Indian temples in Malaysia - entrance
Image credit: @ryan_wenhao via Instagram 

Located in Klang, the Sri Sundaraja Perumal Temple is known to be the oldest Vaishnavite temple in Malaysia. Also known as the Sri Sundararaja Perumal Temple, this temple serves as a prominent place of worship for Hindus within the region and devotees alike from other cities within the country.

Indian temples in Malaysia - temple interior
Image credit: Sri Sundaraja Perumal Temple via Facebook 

Given that a substantial portion of South Indian Hindus in Malaysia are devoted to Lord Vishnu, this temple is specifically dedicated to the deity Lord Vishnu which can be seen at the temple’s main altar. 

Address: No. 80, Jalan Mastika Off Persiaran Raja Muda Musa, Selangor, 41100 Klang
Opening hours: Sun-Wed 6am-12pm & 6pm-9pm | Thu & Fri 6am-12pm & 6pm-9.30pm | Sat 5am-12.30pm & 6pm-9.30pm
Contact: 03-3371 1763 | Sri Sundaraja Perumal Temple Facebook

12. Sri Ayyanar Temple, Taiping – 72-feet tall statue of Sri Ayyanar

Indian temples in Malaysia - entrance
Image credit: Temple Hunters via Facebook

Sri Ayyanar Temple in Taiping is linked to a local Tamil village in India, and has gained worldwide recognition among Hindu devotees. 

Indian temples in Malaysia - temple interior
Image credit: Temple Hunters via Facebook

According to history, a Tamil migrant worker named Periamma in Malaysia created a small statue of the Hindu deity, Sri Ayyanar, using sand and clay materials imported from India. As the number of worshippers grew significantly over time, the temporary temple gained immense popularity.  

Indian temples in Malaysia - statue
Image credit: Siva Subramani via Google Maps

Today, this modest shrine has transformed into a grand and renowned temple, featuring a towering 72-foot-tall statue of Sri Ayyanar that captures the attention of devotees and non-devotees alike. 

Fun fact: the original idol crafted by Periamma centuries ago still remains preserved within this temple, so if you’re keen to catch a glimpse of the idol and historic piece of the town, you might want to take a trip down to Taiping. 

Address: A7, Kampung Ulu Sepetang, 34010, Taiping, Perak
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 7am-11am & 6pm-9pm | Sun 7am-1pm & 6pm-9pm
Contact: 012-493 4454 

13. Sri Poyyatha Vinayagar Moorthy Temple, Melaka – oldest Hindu temple in M’sia

Indian temples in Malaysia - entrance
Image credit:
@vanjas_ways via Instagram

Built in 1781, Sri Poyyatha Vinayagar Moorthy temple in Melaka is the oldest Hindu temple in Malaysia that featires a Dravidian architecture in the Pallava style.

Each level of the gopuram is painted with an iconography depicting a symbolic meaning. Upon closer look, you’ll notice the first level showcases the golden vel, known as a sacred spear of Lord Muruga, while the second tier has imagery of Lord Vishnu accompanied by the swastika and the third has golden bells.

INdian temples in Malaysia - interior
Image credit: Sri Poyyatha Vinayagar Moorthy via Facebook 

Unlike traditional prayer halls, this temple has a humble yet spacious hall that can comfortably accommodate over 100 devotees. The main prayer hall boasts colourful walls and intricate drawings when pieced together forms a serene and devotional atmosphere.

INdian temples in Malaysia - interior
Image credit: Sri Poyyatha Vinayagar Moorthy via Facebook 

The sanctum sanctorum, otherwise known as the garbhagriha, is the innermost chamber where the main deity Lord Ganesha sits enshrined. In contrast to the conventional depictions of Lord Ganesha, this idol is sculpted from black limestone and stands around three feet tall. 

Address: No 5 to 11, Jalan Tukang Emas, 75200, Melaka
Opening hours: 7am-11.30am & 6pm-9pm, Daily
Contact: 06-281 0693

Also watch our feature here:

Indian temples in Malaysia with stunning architecture

Temples in Malaysia have always been a part of our country’s diverse cultural background. These 13 temples with their stunning architectural designs show the world what Malaysia is truly capable of. Apart from their historic and cultural significance, they are also a good starting point for anyone who wants to learn more about Hinduism and Indian cultures.

Cultural buffs will also want to check out these 10 unique mosques in Malaysia and these 11 heritage buildings in KL with secret histories.

Cover image adapted from: a a via Google Maps, @talunglee via Instagram, @km0andbyond via Instagram

This article was first published on 27th September 2021, and updated by Yusintha on 7th November 2023.

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