Our next destination was quite far from Tok Bali Beach where we came from. It took us more than an hour before we reach the first Buddhist Temple listed in our Itinerary – The Wat Photivihan Buddhist Temple in Tumpat, Kelantan.
The Largest Reclining Buddha in Southeast Asia
Wat Photivihan is a famous Buddhist temple which is located in Tumpat district, in the state of Kelantan in Malaysia. This temple is known for housing a 40m statue of sleeping Buddha. The reclining statue is the longest of its kind in Southeast Asia. The temple is a Thai Buddhist temple and is mainly visited by ethnic Thai people since the area is near the Thai Border.
Wat Photivihan temple is located at around 15km from Kota Bharu, the capital city of the state of Kelantan. The construction of the 40m statue started in 1973 and was completed in 1979. The reclining Buddha statue at Wat Photivihan is about 7m longer than the older statue of reclining Buddha in Wat Chaiyamangkalaram in Penang.
Inside the Buddhist Temple
The state of Kelantan is often referred to as ‘Cradle of Malay Culture’ and has Muslims as its predominant population. Despite of being an Islam following area, the state accommodates an extensive array of Wats (Temples).Visiting the state will make you realize the affinity which the local Muslims have towards Thai Buddhism.
Reclining Buddha in Kelantan
There are almost 25 Buddhist temples in Tumpat alone but due to lack of time, we decided to visit only two of them. A large majority of travelers who visits Kota Bharu are enjoying its museums, delicious food and traditional architecture and most tourists are paying a visit to the legendary Wat Photivihan Buddhist temple.
Kelantan is simply a paradise for tourists who like to visit shrines and temples. The architectural brilliance of the buildings in the state is quite impressive and the state is indeed the melting pot of various religions and cultures. Wat Photivihan is certainly one of the most visited temples in the state of Kelantan. The statue of the reclining Buddha is the second longest of its kind in the world and thousands of tourists visit the temple each year to admire the beauty of the statue and for offering prayers.
Spot the Buddha
Those who visit Wat Photivihan should also check out Wat Machimmaram, another famous Buddhist temple which houses a statue of Sitting Buddha, one of South East Asia’s largest statues. Another place of interest located nearby is the Wat Mai Suvankhiri Temple which houses a huge dragon boat.
Wat Photivihan can easily be located since its along the highway but I cant see enough public transportation available in this area. There are several interesting places to dine around the temple and tourists will be able to find several unique delicacies there. The ambience of the temple is quite soothing and peaceful… something you experience in some tourist destinations.
*This trip was sponsored by ZestAir and Tourism Malaysia!