Big Buddha statues in Thailand are extremely popular and there are over a dozen huge representations of the Lord Buddha dotted around the country. Each of the popular resort towns has at least one, which, for the sake of simplicity, is often dubbed as the local ‘Big Buddha’. This is usually among the star attractions of the town, and it’s not difficult to see why. Gleaming in the sun, generally wearing an expression of blissful peace or contemplation on a vast face, they are wonderful cultural highlights.
Our list below shows the biggest Big Buddhas in Thailand, in order of size. We decided to measure the statues by the size of the figure, not just the height of the statue, which means that several ‘reclining Buddha’ statues also make the list.
- Phuket FantaSea Cultural Theme Park
- Phi Phi Islands Tour with Express Boat
- James Bond Island Full-Day Tour via Big Boat
- Coral & Racha Islands Full-Day Tour
- Whitewater Rafting & 4-Wheel-Drive Adventure
- Sea Kayaking at Ang Thong Marine Park
- Flying Hanuman Ziplining Experience
- Canoeing Excursion in Phang Nga Bay with Thai Buffet Lunch
- Introduction to City Tour
- John Gray's Cave Canoeing Tour in Phang Nga Bay
Wat MuangAng Thong Province (92 metres tall)
The towering Phra Buddha Maha Nawamin of Wat Muang is one of the tallest statues in the world and is deservedly known as the 'Great Buddha of Thailand'.
The big statue is around 140 km north of Bangkok, in Ang Thong Province. The gold-painted statue took 18 years to build and was completed in 2008. Being sat in the Bhumisparsha mudra pose, its knees span a staggering 63 metres. The nearby 'Hell Park' is also worth a visit, with its gruesome (and much smaller) statues depicting the fate of sinners.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 5am to 7pm
- Location: 19 Hua Taphan, Wiset Chai Chan, Ang Thong 14110, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)35 631 556
Wat BuraphaphiramRoi Et Province (59.2 metres tall)
It could be argued that Buddha statues would be much taller if they were stood instead of sitting. That argument is settled by the Phra Maha Chedi Chai Mongkol statue in Roi Et Province, in Thailand’s rural northeast.
Thailand’s tallest standing Buddha Statue, Phra Phuttha Rattanamongkhon Mahamuni (also known as Luangpho Yai) is built from gold-covered reinforced concrete and is in the Varada mudra pose. There is a viewing platform at the back, which gives you a good view across the city but, reaching only about halfway up the huge figure, your view won’t be as good as his.
- Location: 559/1 Padungpanict Rd, Nai Mueang, Roi Et 45000, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)43 511 374
Wat PhoBangkok (46 metres long)
Wat Pho’s famous Reclining Buddha – properly known as Phra Buddhasaiyas – would not ordinarily be very high on the list of biggest Buddhas in Thailand. But if you’re measuring the height of the figure rather than of the statue, the gold-leaf-covered brick and plaster representation is indeed huge.
Built in 1832, the giant mother-of-pearl feet are perhaps the most striking feature. At 3 metres high and 4.5 metres long and covered in auspicious symbols, it is one of a very few exceptions to the rule that it is rude to point the soles of your feet at people in Thailand. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 8.30am to 6.30pm
- Location: Maharat Road, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)2 226 0335
Phuket Big BuddhaPhuket (45 metres tall)
Known among Thais as the Phra Puttamingmongkol Akenakkiri, Big Buddha is 25 metres across at the base. The whole body is constructed from reinforced concrete covered with beautiful Burmese white jade marble that shines in the sun.
The Phuket Big Buddha has an enviable view across Chalong, towards the rising sun, though it seems a bit of a pity that the big guy misses out on the beautiful sunset view behind him. Seated on one of the tallest hills in Phuket in the Bhumisparsha mudra pose, it can be seen from across much of the southern part of the island. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 6am to 7pm
- Location: Soi Yot Sane 1, Karon, Muang, Phuket 83100, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)81 891 3827
Wat LokayasutharamAyutthaya (37 metres long)
Found in the northwest of the island which represents the historical heart of Ayutthaya, the Phra Noon reclining Buddha is a statue without a temple, with Wat Lokayasutharam itself having been all but flattened.
Constructed from bricks and cement and covered with a very large saffron-coloured robe, it has a rather more rugged appearance than its big brother in Bangkok. There is a miniature scale model in front of it, which is adorned in gold leaf applied by devotees.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 4.30pm
- Location: Uthong Rd, Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon, Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)35 246 076
Wat IntharawihanPhra Nakhon, Bangkok (32 metres tall)
Phra Si Ariyamettrai (also known as Luang Pho To) is a rather broad and flat depiction of Buddha, especially compared to the extremely lanky standing Buddha in Roi Et’s Wat Buraphaphiram.
A full 10 metres across the middle, it shows Buddha carrying a begging bowl. Made of brick and stucco and gilded with 24-carat gold, it took 60 years to construct and was completed in 1927. The pointy Ushnisha (topknot of the hair) contains a Buddhist relic, gifted by the government of Sri Lanka. It is easy to get to, being just a kilometre north of Khao San Road. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 6am to 6pm
- Location: 144 Wisutkasat Road, Bang Khun Phrom, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)2 282 3173
Wat ThipsukhontharamKanchanaburi (32 metres tall)
Found in a modern and huge 512,000-square-metre temple/educational facility/park about 60 km north of town, Phra Buddha Metta Pracha Thai Trailokanath Gandhararath Anusorn holds the (very specific) title of being Thailand’s tallest bronze standing Buddha statue. It's quite a feat of engineering, given how soft a metal bronze is.
Surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens, the statue stands in the Abhaya mudra pose and took around 4 years to complete.
- Location: Don Saeb Village, Moo 13, Krachao, Kanchanaburi 71170, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)34 510 993
Wat SrisoonthornPhuket (29 metres long)
Thanks to its bigger brother, Phuket’s reclining Buddha is comparatively unknown among visitors. The golden statue lays on the roof of the temple’s main building but is surrounded by hills and tall trees, making it hard to spot, even though one of the main roads on the island is a very short distance away.
It's worth stopping to see as the representation has a remarkable look, with huge ears and a very relaxed expression. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 7am to 5.30pm
- Location: 20/4 Thepkrasatree Rd, Si Sunthon, Thalang, Phuket 83110, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)98 017 8044
Phra Buddha Mongkol MaharajHat Yai (19.9 metres tall)
Towering over the city of Hat Yai from its hilltop position and raised up on a pedestal to give it an even higher elevation, Phra Buddha Mongkol Maharaj is one of the tallest standing Buddha statues in Southern Thailand. Despite exhibiting quite a trim physique, it is no lightweight at 200 tonnes.
The centrepiece of a municipal park, it enjoys a spectacular view across the city in the valley below which, based on the hand gesture of the Vitarka mudra pose, it thinks is ‘ok’. There’s a cable car up the hill, so you can judge for yourself. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 9am to 5pm
- Location: Hat Yai, Songkhla 90110, Thailand
Wat Phanan Choeng WorawihanAyutthaya (19 metres tall)
Phra Phanan Choeng is said to be Thailand’s oldest big Buddha and is among the very few upright big Buddhas in Thailand to be housed indoors. It's said to have been built in 1324 (though no proper records remain of its construction) from bricks covered with stucco and gold, and it was originally out in the open and the temple was built around it.
Wearing a saffron-coloured robe and quite a grim expression, the statue is seated in the Bhumisparsha mudra pose at the confluence of the Chao Phraya and Pa Sak rivers. With age comes legends, and it is said that the statue shed tears when Burmese invaders captured Ayutthaya in 1767. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 7am to 6pm
- Location: 2 Moo 12 Phra Nakhon, Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand
Pattaya Big BuddhaPattaya (18 metres tall)
Based on its cheery smile, the Pattaya Big Buddha seemingly enjoys its prime position on Pratumnak Hill – the highest point in the city. It may also be pleased to hold the title of being the biggest Buddha on Thailand’s eastern seaboard.
Built in the 1940s in the Bhumisparsha mudra pose, it has a great view down the long flight of stairs (about 170 of them, but they’re each quite small) lined with impressive seven-headed naga images, which you will have to climb up to get to the statue. Suffice it to say, it is not one of Pattaya’s most wheelchair-friendly attractions, though it is one of its most popular. Read More...
- Location: Pattaya, Bang Lamung, Chon Buri 20150, Thailand
Wat Prathat Doi KhamChiang Mai (17 metres tall)
Wat Phra That Doi Kham or the so-called ‘Temple of the Golden Mountain’ is relatively less-visited, thanks to its many more famous neighbours. The temple is about 10 km from the city centre and is believed to have been built in 687 AD.
The Buddha statue in the Bhumisparsha mudra pose was added later, but has been very well looked after over the years as its white and gold skin really gleams. It is easily the biggest Buddha in Chiang Mai and demonstrates the traditional Lanna style the area is known for. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 6am to 6pm
- Location: Mae Hia, Chiang Mai 50100, Thailand
Phuttha Monthon BuddhaNakhon Pathom (15.9 metres tall)
Phra Si Sakkaya Thotsaphonlayan Prathan Phutthamonthon Suthat is believed to be among the world’s tallest 'walking Buddhas'. That's not a difficult record to hold, given how few similar statues there are.
Built in 1981 as the centrepiece of a park 30 km to the west of downtown Bangkok, it's also said to be the tallest freestanding Buddha statue in the world as, unlike other standing Buddhas in Thailand, it is not supported by extra structures.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 5am to 6.30pm
- Location: 25/25 Moo 6 Phutthamonthon Sai 4 Rd, Salaya, Phutthamonthon, Nakhon Pathom 73170, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)2 441 9012
Koh Samui Big BuddhaKoh Samui (15 metres tall)
Gleaming in the sun as you come in to land at Koh Samui Airport, Samui’s Big Buddha is one of the most popular attractions on the island. Seated on a pedestal at the heart of Wat Phra Yai (literally ‘Temple of the Big Buddha’), it is unusual for having a Dharma wheel and a replica of the Royal Barge Suphannahong behind the gilded figure in the Bhumisparsha mudra pose.
Built in 1972, it is such a significant attraction that the whole coastline around it is known as Big Buddha Beach. Read More...
- Location: Route 4171, Bo Put, Koh Samui, Surat Thani, Thailand