Famous Giant Buddha Statue in China Reopens to the Public

Le Shan Buddha Statue
Photo: Qixin Chen/Getty Images

One of the most extraordinary sites in China is officially open again for visitors after a six-month closure, and it’s definitely worthy of going on your bucket list.

The famous Leshan Giant Buddha in China’s Sichuan Province has been closed for several months so that authorities could make repairs, Lonely Planet reported. The statue is generally accepted to be the world’s largest ancient Buddha statue, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. (However, there is another Buddha statue in Henan, China, which is technically the tallest statue in the world, at 420 feet. But it was built between 1997 and 2008.)

The Leshan Giant Buddha reportedly had cracks on its chest and torso, Shine reported. According to Xinhuanet, it officially opened to the public again on April 26.

The 1,300-year-old statue is a staggering site, about 233 feet tall and and carved directly into the rock face of Leshan Mountain. According to Shine, it was built in the eighth century, during the Tang Dynasty, over a period of 90 years. There is also a drainage system, which was installed in 2001, inside the statue to help with deterioration.

This most recent restoration involved advanced technology, including 3D imaging and drone surveys, in order to effectively repair the statue. The giant Buddha has been repaired twice since 2000, once in 2001 and once in 2007.

The statue is a short trip from the Sichuan capital of Chengdu. It’s a popular site for tourists to come and marvel at the architectural beauty and the incredible surrounding scenery. It’s accessible by train, bus, and ferry.

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