Why You Should Visit Darwin’s Chinese Temple and Museum Chung Wah

Why You Should Visit Darwin’s Chinese Temple and Museum Chung Wah

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 12/07/2018

Reading time: 2 mins

Darwin’s Chinese Temple and Museum Chung Wah is an important landmark in the city. Illustrating the country’s multi-cultural past, and the importance of the Chinese people within the city.


There is a long history of Chinese people dwelling in Darwin, starting from the first Chinese settlers during the days of the gold rush. The temple was built in 1887, setting up off the dirt tracks in the city’s centre. They have rebuilt it several times, starting as a tin shed to the brick building constructed in 1977. Cyclones and lootings during war years damaged the temple throughout its existence, but it still remains a historic structure despite its refurbishing.

The Temple and Museum

The exterior is decorated in the Chinese’s trademark red colour, with gold looping in and around the bright columns, walls, and roof. Temple is open daily, from early morning until 4 pm. Only a five-minute walk from the Darwin Mall, with multiple gates to enter from. While the temple is free entry, the museum costs less than $5; the price changing depending on your age.

What You Can Do There

Both the Chinese Temple and the Museum Chung Wah explores the Chinese settlement, sharing past stories and recreating narratives from that pivotal era in Darwin. Displaying numerous artefacts such as documents, family trees and personal stories of past Chinese individuals.

Elsewhere in the museum, there is a small model of the old Chinatown. It illustrates the historic life of the city. It depicts the bustling streets and traditions, that influence the entire Australian history as a whole.

The museum easily separates each past individuals’ life, showing old photographs, work lives, and struggles that each and every member went through. Stroll around the temple and museum and connect with this incredible culture right in the heart of Darwin.

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward turned his travel passion into a thriving Australian tourism business. Before he co-founded his own business, Sightseeing Tours Australia, he was enjoying being a Melbourne tour guide. Even now, Cameron delights in helping visitors from all around the world get the most out of their incredible Australian trip. You’ll see Cameron leading tours or writing about his favourite Australian places where he shares his local insights.

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