The animals on the roof represent the Chinese Zodiac. The dragon is thought to protect the entire temple grounds. The buildings flanking the temple house the Buddhist nuns and a library. The characteristic architecture of these buildings makes for an unusual juxtaposition with the typical Dutch buildings surrounding the temple.
The temple is located in Amsterdam’s Chinatown neighbourhood. Chinatown is the area between the Stormsteeg, Gelderse Kade and Zeedijk. The district is well known for the Nieuwmarkt, Waag building, and variety of Asian restaurants and unique shops. During the annual Chinese New Year celebrations this year goes wild and there are the loud bangs of firecrackers and traditional lion dances.