So you want to see the Buddha, and that doesn’t include the statue sitting at the local Pier One Imports’ sales shelf. But you’d rather see the real thing where power and spirituality fuse together for a one-of-a-kind experience. Travel with your best behavior as the Buddha hears and sees all, thus mocking the Buddha statue is disrespectful and not accepted within these various cultures. If you’re ready to experience the real deal, head to Asia to find some of the most impressive Buddha statues in the world.
Tian Tan Buddha
Located in Ngong Ping on Lantau Island in Hong Kong, this massive statue stands 112 feet in height and weighs 280 short tons. This statue symbolizes the harmony between man and nature and people and religion. This statue is Hong Kong’s Buddhism mecca and a significant tourist destination.
Wat Pho is a Buddhist temple located in Bangkok, Thailand. This temple is commonly known as the “Temple of Reclining Buddha,” and known to be the birth place of Thai massage. Located inside the temple is a beautifully crafted and sculptured, golden Buddha. The Reclining Buddha (Phra Buddhasaiyas) is 160 feet in length and is one of the most photogenic and well-kept Buddha’s in Asia.
Bodhi Tree Buddha Head
Located in Thailand’s ancient city, Ayutthaya, is known to be the home of religious works, especially with Buddhism. Carved into the Boddhi Tree is the sandstone Buddha head, which depicts the only remains left after other pieces were lost. This is a popular tourist attraction as well as a place for prayer for Buddhists.
Ushiku Daibutsu Buddha
Located in Ushiku, Japan, this statue stands 390 feet tall, atop of a blossoming lotus flower. This is one of the tallest Buddha statues, and powerfully stands above the tree tops and local agriculture land. The Buddha was built to commemorate the birth of Shinran, the founder of the “True Pure Land School” or Buddhism.
Great Buddha Daibutsu
Also known as the Great Buddha of Kamakura, this bronze, Amida Buddha statue sits 13 meters high on the Kotokuin Temple grounds. Originally built in 1252, the statue has been in open air since 1495, due to typhoons destroying the temple, which safely covered the statue. This Buddha is located in Kamakura City, Japan.
Gal Vihara Statue
Located in ancient city, Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka, this Buddha statue is carved directly into the protruding rock. Buddha was etched in stone in the 12th Century by Parakramabahu I. This statue actually consists of four Buddha’s with the most popular being the reclining Buddha.
Monywa Buddhas Statue
Located in the bustling city of Monywa, Myanmar, two statues stand and lie proudly near the Chindwin River. The Buddhas are hollow, thus visitors can walk from head to toe in the 300-foot reclining Buddha statue, viewing 9,000 images of Buddha and his disciples. This statue signifies Buddha’s parinirvana, which is his death and entry into nirvana.
Elizabeth is a fitness professional, workshop presenter and freelance writer. She is an active traveler who treks the globe looking for interesting stories to write and places to photograph. Her most significant travel achievements include living and volunteering in Australia twice and studied yoga in India.