Giant Golden Buddha Statue Pakse, Laos

Iconic Location of Pakse Golden Buddha Statue

The Golden Buddha statue is located in Southern Laos on a hillside adjacent to the Mekong River. Additionally, this meditating Buddha statue is a prominent feature on the horizon as seen from the city of Pakse, Laos.

Pakse, Laos is the capital of Champasak province and it sits on the opposite side of the Mekong river from one of the world’s best Buddha statues. The economy of Pakse has been slowly improving in recent years. As a result, the city has been able to fund projects such as this iconic landmark.

This statue is the youngest of the world’s best Buddha statues and construction was only recently completed in 2013.

Golden Buddha Statue Pakse Laos

The Pakse Golden Buddha statue is depicting the Dhyana or “meditation” mudra.

Access to the Pakse Golden Buddha Statue

It is easy to find, simply get a motorbike and cross the Japanese – Lao Friendship Bridge towards the gleaming spectacle on the horizon. Then the monument is accessible by a long stairway from which the golden meditating Buddha statue subtly reveals itself through the trees.

Golden Buddha Statue Pakse Laos

The Pakse Golden Buddha statue subtly reveals itself through the trees as you approach it on the mountain trail adjacent to the Mekong river.

Sweeping Views from the Pakse Golden Buddha

The iconic location of the statue was an important consideration for its placement on this list. This is because of the sweeping views from its hilltop location. Visitors can enjoy the splendid panoramic views of the Mekong River, city of Pakse and the surrounding country side.

It was this stunning location that compelled the inclusion of the Pakse Golden Buddha statue among the world’s best Buddha statues. Additionally, the golden Buddha statue in Pakse has the best sunset view in the world. Therefore, it is best visited in late afternoon to enjoy the sweeping sunset views over the Mekong River.

View of Mekong River from Pakse Golden Buddha

There are iconic views from the Pakse Golden Buddha statue. The silhouette is of a serpent deity called the “naga”. The naga is a prominent Buddhist symbol throughout SE Asia.

Meaning of the Pakse Golden Buddha

The Dhyana mudra is also commonly referred to as the meditation mudra. This mudra is depicted by a combination of both hands. Therefore, the left hand is underneath the right with the palms flat and thumbs touching. Additionally, the hands are gently placed in the lap of the statue while seated in the lotus position.

The Dhyana mudra is sometimes depicted by statues of Siddhartha Gautama, but it is more commonly depicted by Amitabha statues.

Bonus Points for Pakse Golden Buddha Statue

Similar to other iconic Buddha statues included on the list, the Pakse Golden Buddha is surrounded by a magnificent natural landscape. However, it also includes an exhilarating hike with very impressive supplemental statues along the way.

The supplemental statues include nagas and also a classic depiction of the 7 headed Naga King named Mucalinda who protected the Buddha with his hood during a severe thunder storm.

7 headed Naga King Mucalinda

The Naga King Mucalinda protects the Buddha while he is meditating.

Naga statue Pakse Golden Buddha

Additional Statue of King Mucalinda near Pakse Golden Buddha.

Conclusion

This area of Laos was devastated by the carpet bombing of the US military doing their “secret war”. Even 50 years later, the country is still in shambles and is only slowly rising above the destruction caused by the side effects of the Vietnam War.

As a result, the Pakse Golden Buddha statue reflects the resilience of the Lao people to transcend their challenges. It most certainly holds a well deserved place on the list of the world’s best Buddha statues.

Sunset Pakse Golden Buddha

The sun sets behind me during our visit to the Pakse Golden Buddha statue.