The Big Buddha or Giant Buddha is located on Ngong Ping Lantau Island as one of the top sightseeing attractions in Hong Kong and the Chinese name should be “Tian Tan Buddha”. The bronze Big Buddha statue is completed in 1993 since when with its 34m (112 ft) height and 250 metric tons, Big Buddha becomes the second-largest outdoor sitting Buddha in the world (the biggest one is in Taiwan). The Big Buddha can easily be reached on foot within a few minutes walk from the Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car Terminus. In case you took the Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car you should have seen this impressive Big Buddha statue along your scenic cable car ride or when you exited the terminus. Interestingly, the Big Buddha is even visible from Macau on a clear day and in case you arrive in the morning or early afternoon by plane you might have a chance to spot him from your window seat as well [Read more about “Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car”]
Following the way through Ngong Ping Village will lead you to the Ngong Ping Piazza and the Bodhi Path. At the end of the Bodhi Path you can already spot the entrance of Big Buddha and the countless steps leading up to the Big Buddha platform. If you are brave enough you can climb the 268 steps to reach to the platform (which we highly recommend), but don’t underestimate the climb. Especially on hot and humid days you should take your time climbing up and a good excuse for a stop or break is to take some amazing pictures of the Big Buddha statue.
Insider Tips: Good news for all of you who are handicapped: there is a small and winding road to access the platform as well too. Just ask some staff members and they will assist you.
When you arrive on the platform of the Big Buddha and catch your breath, you will notice an additional six smaller bronze statues facing the Giant Buddha. The six smaller bronze statues are known as “The Offering of the Six Devas” and surround the Big Buddha. Each of the smaller statue knee in front of the Big Buddha and offer him flowers, fruits, incense, music, ointment or light (lamp). As you probably already have guessed, each of the offering is a symbol and represents patience, morality, wisdom, charity, zeal and meditation. Take your time and walk around the platform of the Big Buddha and admire his serene, calm, dignity and charisma. The tranquil atmosphere paired with the amazing and beautiful views of Lantau Island will transform you in a calm and relaxed setting and should definitely not be missed. Last but not least, we would like to share an interesting and unique fact about the Big Buddha. Did you notice that the Giant Buddha faces north? It’s actually very unique. Usually, Buddha statues face south.
For all of you who wonder what is inside the Big Buddha. Inside or rather beneath the Big Buddha are actually three floors which can be accessed. The three floors are better known under the name “The Hall of Universe”, “The Hall of Benevolent Merit” and “The Hall of Remembrance”. In case you are interested in Buddhism, it might be worthwhile to have a look since there is a relic of the Gautama Buddha inside. For all others, it is not really worthwhile to go inside. In case you are interested, you have to purchase some meal tickets from the Po Lin Monastery which will gain you access (Meal tickets range about HK$ 65 – 100). Please note that you are not allowed to take pictures inside the three Halls beneath the Big Buddha.
Access to the Big Buddha and the Po Lin Monastery is free of charge and open to the public daily from 10:00 am – 5:30 pm.
How to Get to the Big Buddha:
Here are most efficient ways to get Big Buddha:
Get to Ngong Ping Lantau Island (Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car Terminus or Bus Terminus):
-By MTR: Take MTR and transfer to Tung Chung Line. Get off at Tung Chung station and take Exit B. Follow the signs and walk about 2-3 minutes to the Cable Car counter.
-From the Airport:
Take the MTR Airport Express Train to Tsing Yi Station (fare HK$ 60 single journey / approx. 12 minutes ride). Then change in Tsing Yi Station to Tung Chung Line and get off at Tung Chung station.
-From Mainland China (Lo Wu/Lok Ma Chau):
Take the MTR East Rail Line to Kowloon Tong (approx. 37 minutes ride). Then transfer to subway to Tung Chung station and take the Exit B. Follow the signs and walk about 2-3 minutes to the Cable Car counter.
Alternatively, you can take the MTR East Rail Line to Sheung Shui (just one stop/ approx. 7 minutes/fare about HK$ 20). Take exit D1 and walk towards the bus stops. Then take Bus 279X to Tsing Yi MTR station. At the Tsing Yi Station change to the orange MTR Tung Chung Line (about HK$ 15) and stay till the last station.
Get to Big Buddha and Ngong Ping Village:
After you get to Lantau Island, you can choose the following ways to get up to Big Buddha and Ngong Ping Village:
-By Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car
For details about how to get up to Big Buddha by cable car, please refer to the article”Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car“.
-By New Lantau Bus No.23
The New Lantau Bus No.23 (air-conditioned bus) starts from Tung Chung Town Center to Ngong Ping Road. The ride is about 21 kilometers and takes around 50 minutes. Adult ticket price from Mon-Fri is approx. HK$ 17 and on weekends and holidays is approx. HK$ 27. Taking New Lantau Bus No.23 is an economic way of getting to Big Buddha as well as an alternative when Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car is broken or under maintenance. However, it takes longer time and is not suitable for those who have bus-sick.
Official Site of New Lantau Bus No.23: http://www.newlantaobus.com/road_23.htm
If there are too many people waiting for either the Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car or the New Lantau Bus, you also can consider hiring a taxi. Taking taxi to Big Buddha takes about 20-25 minutes and costs around HK$ 200.
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