Visible from most places on the south of the island, the Big Buddha is one of the most important landmarks and religious symbols for Buddhists in Phuket, as well as a great tourist attraction with amazing 360 degree views of the south of Phuket.
From the top of the site you can see views out to Phuket Town, Kata, Karon, Chalong Bay and more. It’s relatively close to Phuket and easily accessible with a tuk tuk or a day tour.
The environment at the big Buddha is very calm and peaceful, with most people respecting the importance of the site and taking things in in a respectful manner. You can hear the faint sounds of the bells in the trees tinkling together, having been donated by visitors to help with construction costs.
Construction of the Big Buddha began in 2004 and has been funded entirely through donations over the last 10 years.
You are still able to donate to the project either by
- Donating money directly
- Purchasing a bell that you can write your name on and add to one of the trees around the grounds of the Big Buddha
- Purchasing a block of marble that you can sign and will be used in the construction.
At the base of the Buddha there is a hall which displays the history of the project as well as the donations box. There is also a wall that shows currency from all the different countries that have contributed to the project, so it’s fun to see if you can find your country.
Getting To The Big Buddha in Phuket
The Big Buddha can be found at the end of a 6km windy road, leading off the main freeways in Phuket.
The road leading up to the Big Buddha is off Chao Fa Road East near Chalong. Turn down Soi Yodsane and follow the indications for the next 6kms up the hill.
The Big Buddha is open from 8am to 7:30pm everyday except for public holidays. Admission is free, although donations to contribute to the site are very appreciated.
Dress Code at the Big Buddha
While the Big Buddha is a popular tourist attraction, it is still a religious site which means beach wear, short skirts and singlets are not acceptable around the temple grounds. Dress modestly, with legs, shoulders and chests covered.
There is a booth at the entrance where you can borrow a sarong free of charge if you need one, and return when you’re leaving. Please be respectful of the Buddhist culture at all times.
Just outside of the Big Buddha site you can also find the Nakkerd Sea View Restaurant, which offers beautiful views over the Phuket coastline, as well as meals, drinks and snacks. It’s a great place to stop for a bite to eat if you’re in the middle of a long day of adventuring.
The Big Buddha – Nakkerd Hills between Kata and Chalong