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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

Which are the popular religious sites in Koh Samui?

Manavi Kapur DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

The green hues of tall coconut trees blend perfectly with the turquoise hues of the sea, the breeze cooling the warmth of the sun, just to the right degree. Such perfection in Koh Samui naturally paves way for a spiritual awakening, an experience of tranquility that takes you to higher realms of reality. Known for its close ties with Buddhism, Koh Samui offers a range of temples and wats, where you can experience a little slice of history, with a large helping of calming spirituality. Explore these popular religious sites in Koh Samui for a truly complete holiday experience:

  • Big Buddha Temple

    One of the most prominent landmarks on the island, you’ll be able to spot the Big Buddha statue from your flight, just before landing at Koh Samui. The massive 12 m high statue and the temple were built in 1972, on a raised platform. You have to climb an entire flight of stairs to reach the golden statue to either offer your prayers or take in the absolutely magnificent view of the island and its surroundings. Sitting in the Mara pose, the statue is the ultimate symbol of peace in the face of chaos and conflict. Buddhist pilgrims and devotees offer prayers here in the form of flowers, fruits and incense. Though the temple is open all day long, and even at night with its golden lights, it’s best to visit this temple early in the morning to experience the cult of devotion which you’ll see when the devotees offer prayers and chants here.
    There is a vivacious market-place near the temple where you can buy lovely souvenirs and handicrafts and stop for a light snack or a hearty meal. The beach near the temple was called
    Bang Rak, but with the increasing popularity of the statue, the beach now itself is called Big Buddha Beach, a must visit for its fine blend of peace and excitement.

  • Hin Lad Waterfall Temple

    The perfect amalgamation of nature and divinity, this temple is your ideal getaway from the average routine of daily life. Just enroute to the picturesque Hin Lad Waterfall, the temple is nestled inside a shaded forest, offering a serene retreat from all noise and worries. This one is usually popular among pilgrims and tourists on weekends, where you can even carry a picnic hamper and set in down in the picture-perfect spot. The main Buddha statue stands in a natural niche with vegetation surrounding it, giving it a surreal and serene appearance.
    The area is well marked and has directions as to what paths to walk on, including some witty and wise
    Buddhist sayings to keep you company on your walk here. The temple lies on the left of the Hin Lad Waterfall trail, so you could stop by while trekking to the magnificent waterfall, which is a 20-30 minutes away from here. Though the temple can be visited all year round, the monsoon season is an ideal time to experience the magic that nature casts over this place.

  • Wat Khunaram

    This temple exemplifies the principles of life and death in Thai Buddhist cultures. The temple houses the mummified body of Luong Pordaeng, a Buddhist monk who wanted his body to be displayed as an example of the basic principle of life: death. Death is highly revered and is a fascinating element, not to be feared or resented. Despite having been mummified for nearly 30 years, it shows very little signs of any decay, adding to the aura of mysticism surrounding the temple.
    wat is open during daylight hours everyday and it is recommended that you pay a visit here during morning or afternoon to experience the rituals and traditions of devotees here.

With an epiphany at every corner and pristine nature to keep you company, this holiday will literally be a spiritual spa for you. Let go of worldly stresses and experience calm like never before - this will be a holiday that will stay with you much after it has officially ended.

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