Monday, May 31, 2010

Leshan Giant Buddha

One of the things to do when you are in Sichuan province, especially when you are near the vicinity of Chengdu, is to see the Giant Buddha of Leshan.

Leshan is a city located near Chengdu (the provincial capital of Sichuan).  To be honest we weren't very impressed by Chengdu itself where we saw lots of police officers and exiled Russian students with no money trying to find their way back to their country.  Not to worry though, we quickly got out of there and made our way to see the Leshan Giant Buddha!

The Buddha itself is very large, and cannot be seen entirely from land.  This is due to the fact that it is right up against a river.  Because of that, the best views are offered from a boat.

Yes, the Buddha is large and it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996.  But we went there, saw the Buddha, and that was pretty much it.  Not much else to see, plus there were TONS of tourists.  So in the end, it was more like a 'been there done that' kind of thing.  Did you notice in the picture my friend Yeonchang standing next to the head?  This gives you an idea of just how giant the Buddha is.  AND the history of this Buddha spans over 1000 years!  I am surprised it is still standing, or sitting to be more accurate.  Of course restoration projects on it have begun, but still it is quite impressive.

To avoid spending lots of money don't eat in the park.  Either bring your own food in or wait until you leave.  I would recommend bringing your own food as the whole affair will take at least half of your day.  To find out more about the Buddha itself read the Wikipedia or Wikitravel article, those links will take you to see more info.

All the information I found about how to get there and what not was provided by the Lonely Planet guide on China which I highly recommend. 

Lonely Planet:  China

Below is the Lonely Planet Guidebook for China.  I would highly recommend this as I often used this as a reference for a wide range of things from finding places to sleep to transportation to eating, and more.  The important thing about traveling in China and most of Asia in general if you are on a budget is to get to know the prices of things.  Guidebooks like Lonely Planet do a pretty good job at telling you approximately what price things should be so that you don't get ripped off.  Click on the image and it will take you to where you can purchase your own copy of the book.  


  1. I like how your friend is right next to the Buddha's head. LOL It's a nice picture. It looks like a great place to visit and to at least take a photo of. hehehe

  2. Most of the big Buddhas in Asia are a "been there done that" thing except if you hang out with the local tourists and they find you super cool because you're a foreigner and then decide to feed you :) That's always fun.

    I hope you're enjoying China! I lived in Shanghai for four months in the fall of 2008 and I miss it! The food was so cheap and so good.

    Sichuan has some BOMB food. So spicy! Take advantage of it and safe travels!

  3. Mary: Thanks for the comment! Yes it was a nice place to take a picture. I'm sorta glad I took that picture. It was my friends idea.

    Jess: Wow, I'm jealous! I've never been to Shanghai before! That will definitely be next on my list of places to visit in China. And yes, I love spicy food, and Sichuan takes care of that ;)

  4. Wow!! It looks very impressive!! Thanks for sharing!

  5. The Asians like large Buddha statues. I've seen many in my travels. If I get to Chengdu when I'm in China, I'll make a point of visiting this one. Great post.

  6. Island Gal: Thanks for the comment!

    Nancie: Yes, there is even a larger Buddhist statue... actually it is a Boddhisattva, Guanyin or the South Sea of Sanya. Went there a while back. It's like the 4th largest statue in the world or something like that.

  7. They are not just of spiritual importance but also bring an aesthetic beauty to the space that we inhabit.

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