History of the world-known Batu Caves

Do you know, Batu Caves was built in 1891? Yes, you’re right! Batu Caves ages 129 years old today. The mighty Batu Caves not only serves as a sacred place but it is indeed a great alternative for those who would like to explore nature.

The Cave’s History

Prior to 1860, Batu Caves were known to be uncluttered in which some of the cave heads were used as hunting transit shelters by the Besisi people.

postcards Batu inside 1
Uncluttered Batu Caves

It was after 1860 that the Chinese colonials started unearthing dungs for their plant plot’s fertilization.

William T. Hornaday, a naturalist from Washington’s National Museum was the man that made the caves famous. He was said to be on his elephant hunting party when he first encountered the limestone hills in 1878.

William Temple Hornaday and bison calf

The story of Temple

It is said that the Indian merchant who found the Sri Maha Mariamman Temple, K. Thamboosamy Pillai had a dream that Goddess Shakti requesting him to build a temple for her son, Lord Murugan in a “Battu Malai” (Batu Caves).

How to earn dignity?
K. Thamboosamy Pillai

Without wasting any time, he then went in search of a proper cave to built the temple. And when he came across Batu caves, Thamboosamy is said to be dumbstruck of its structure.

He immediately decided to build the temple there as he strongly believed the cave’s mouth resembles “Vel”, the spear that Lord Murugan holds.

Murugan: Batu Caves Kuala Lumpur
The entrance of cave resembles the “Vel” symbol

Thaipusam Celebration

In 1891, Thamboosamy along with his friend Kanthapa Thevar successfully managed to place a “Vel” as a deity in Batu Caves.

The first Thaipusam celebration was held a year later, in 1892. Though the temple was as not grand and spacey as it now but many Hindus went to see and embrace the beauty of the 400 feet high cave temple.

First Thaipusam Celebration

The Restriction Order

Not long after that, Thamboosamy and his friend brought in Lord Murugan’s sacred idol into the Batu Caves. Yet, the happiness did not last long as the “Vel” was ordered to be removed and the Hindus to stop praying at the cave by the British Collector of Land Revenue at that time.

This case was brought to court by the temple committee and they won the case. The “Vel” was re-positioned and Hindus resumed their prayers in Batu Caves.

The Steps of Batu Caves

In 1940, concrete steps were installed to replace the wooden steps that were set back in 1930. Not to miss, today Batu Caves is known to have 272 steps which is painted in rainbow shades back in 2018.

The steps to this Malaysian temple got a rainbow makeover – and ...
Batu Caves steps painted in rainbow shades

Lord Murugan Statue

In 2006, the biggest statue of Lord Murugan was unveiled, standing 140 feet tall. The statue is said to be built with 350 tons of steel bars and 1,550 cubic meters of concrete. About 300 liters of gold paint were used to fully cover the statue.

The statue is also known to be the world’s third tallest Hindu deity statue after the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Statue located in Indonesia and Kailashnath Mahadev Statue located in Nepal.

Batu Caves - Lord Murugan Statue is the tallest statue of Hindu ...
Lord Murugan statue, standing 140 feet tall

Apart from the Lord Murugan statue, Batu Caves also has another beautiful statue of Lord Hanuman painted in mesmerizing green paint.

If you are not a religious person, you can also visit Batu Caves once this MCO is over just to explore the beauty that it has to offer and not to forget making friends with the monkeys, of course!

Everything you need to know about visiting Batu Caves - Jet Lagged ...
A tourist is seen to feed the monkey in Batu Caves with her baby.

If you’re a social freak, make sure to take plenty of Instagram worthy pictures to post on your social media platforms.

Batu Caves - KL Malaysia Travel Photos | Malaysia travel, Malaysia ...
Instagram worthy picture

Do you know any history of a beautiful place? Let us know in the comment section below.

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