Categories > Guides and Tips

What to do at Hong Kong's Big Buddha

What to do at Hong Kong’s Big Buddha?

I have my well-earned diploma framed on my living room wall but it still won’t compare to the bragging rights I just earned – being face-to-face with the Big Buddha after a long trek up the famous steps to it!

My lovely (and weak) friends took to Klook for their cable car pass, but I had something to prove. Whether they’re impressed with my stamina or not was hard to tell, though. They were already talking about the trip down when I got there. 

But never mind that! If you’re raring to take on the trek to the Big Buddha of Hong Kong too, get ready – I’ll tell you everything you need to know.

What can we do in Big Buddha?

When you visit Big Buddha in Hong Kong, the top thing to do is climb up 268 steps to reach the three-story pedestal, where you can visit the Buddha statue and take in the expansive views of Lantau and the South China Sea.

That’s likely the primary reason you’re drawn to this popular attraction on Lantau Island. But, guess what? There’s more than just that waiting for you there! Let’s go over them below.

ALL the Top Things to Do in Big Buddha

Climb the 268 steps to the Big Buddha

Okay, brace yourself for the coolest part of your Big Buddha trip – the epic climb up 268 steps! It might sound like a workout, but trust me, it’s totally worth it. 

As you make your way up, the view just keeps getting better. You’ll catch glimpses of Lantau Island and the chill Po Lin Monastery. It’s like a scenic sneak peek that builds up the excitement with each step.

Now, when you finally reach the top, it’s like a visual feast up there. 

The whole statue is right in front of you, and you can wander around it. Feel free to take all the pics you want – this is prime selfie territory.

Note: After capturing your perfect shots with the Big Buddha, don’t miss the six smaller bronze statues that surround it. Known as “The Offering of the Six Divas,” these little gems encircle the Big Buddha. 
Each one represents a different aspect of Buddhism, like generosity, morality, patience, zeal, meditation, and wisdom. It’s like getting a quick lesson in Buddhism while soaking in those incredible views.

Explore Po Lin Monastery

Alright, so you’ve just had your mind blown by the massive Big Buddha (and maybe caught your breath after those 268 steps). Now, it’s time to keep the adventure rolling – descend from the Big Buddha and head straight to the Po Lin Monastery.

So, what’s on the agenda? First up, take in the tranquility of the large altar outside the monastery. It’s where people pause to light incense and offer their prayers.

Once you step inside, the main temple is a visual feast! Colorful tiles and ceramic statues deck the walls, giving the whole place a vibe that’s part mesmerizing, part jaw-dropping. 

Additionally, you can explore the exhibition hall showcasing Buddhist relics and venture into the Hall of the Ten Thousand Buddhas (yes, it’s as fascinating as it sounds).

And if it’s peace you’re looking for, you can find your Zen in the meditation hall or dive into the wisdom at the library.

Eat at the Po Lin Monastery

After soaking up the serenity of the Po Lin Monastery, let’s talk food, because all that exploring can work up an appetite. 

Swing over to the left as you make your way into the monastery, and boom, there’s a vegetarian restaurant waiting to serve you! No Michelin stars here, but trust us, the Hong Kong cuisine it offers is pretty darn satisfying.

Right next to the vegetarian restaurant, you could treat yourself to something nice at the adjacent snack center shop. It’s stocked with desserts and an array of Chinese-style vegetarian snacks, offering a delightful indulgence for your taste buds.

Now, here’s the lowdown on dining choices up here – it’s either a trek back to Ngong Ping Village or BYO (that’s Bring Your Own). But, hardly anyone goes for BYO; eating at the monastery’s vegan restaurant is the go-to move around here.

Note: If you’re eager to dine at the vegetarian restaurant, ensure you have purchased tickets for a vegetarian lunch or snacks at the counter located at the base of Big Buddha before heading to the Po Lin Monastery.

Walk the Wisdom Path

A day spent visiting Big Buddha is a day filled with plenty of walking. Behind the Tian Tan Buddha and the Po Lin Monastery lies a hidden gem called the Wisdom Path. 

And yes, you guessed it right – it calls for another walk.

As you make your way, you’ll trade the bustling touristy vibes for a tranquil path under a canopy of trees, revealing a green side of Hong Kong you might not expect. It’s peaceful, beautiful, and a world away from the iconic Hong Kong skyline.

What makes the Wisdom Path extra special? The 38 steles engraved with the Chinese version of the centuries-old Heart Sutra prayer laid out in an infinity shape. 

So, take a stroll, soak up the peaceful surroundings, and enjoy this unique experience that adds another layer to your Big Buddha adventure

Take a cable car ride

For an absolute must-do experience, hop on the Ngong Ping 360 cable car ride from Tung Chung MTR station to reach the majestic Big Buddha statue. 

This scenic journey takes you from the station, soaring over Tung Chung Bay and the picturesque hills of Lantau, bringing you within 1 km of the statue’s base.

The cable car adventure spans around 25 minutes, offering two cabin options: standard cabins and crystal cabins. 

The standard cabins provide comfort and excellent views, but for an elevated experience, opt for the crystal cabins. With their glass floors and ceilings, these cabins take your views to the next level, literally and figuratively.

As a cherry on top, you can enjoy this cable car ride both on your way to and back from the Tung Chung MTR station. It’s a fast and highly enjoyable way to wrap up your unforgettable Big Buddha visit.

Related topics