Taoists ushered in the Nine Emperor Gods Festival at the Butterworth seafront last night, kicking off a nine-day celebration marked by a strict vegetarian diet.
A few devotees waded into the sea to welcome what they believe to be the spirit of the nine emperors as hundreds of others, many of them dressed in white to symbolise purity, looked on along the beach.
Jalan Raja Uda in Butterworth will be transformed into a hive of celebration over the coming nine days. Some believe that the area along the road has been prosperous because of its association with the festival.
At the end of the nine days, the spirit will be escorted on a vessel from the sea front and then once it is farther out, the vessel will be set ablaze. Devotees believe the spirit of the nine emperor gods will then return to the heavens.