Buddhapadipa Temple (Greater London - England)

When I visited Wimbledon, I came to know that very close to the Stadium is the oldest Buddhist Temple in London and obviously I had to go. It was at a 15 mins walk distance. The place from outside is deceiving! There's a golden relief sculpture of a wheel and 2 deers. Near the entrance is the office. Till this point, it just looks like a regular concrete building.
Its affiliated to the Royal Thai Embassy in London. It was opened in Aug 1, 1966 by the King & Queen of Thailand during their visit here. But then it was at a different location. Later by 1975-76, the present location was bought and the temple was shifted here!
Presently temple is in the centre of an area of 4 acre. That is what, as I said, is completely invisible from outside. Beyond the office & home from the residents is the actual temple. Its in the perfectly Thai architecture.

The main section is called the Uposatha Hal which has a huge golden sculpture of Buddha which was gifted by the committee of the Foundation of Buddhist Temple in London. This is a replica of the sculpture in Buddhasihing in the National Museum in Bangkok. There's also a huge black colored Buddha made of bronze gifted by the King of Thailand in 1966. Also are some candles, vases, golden lotuses, and some chatras. 

But beyond all this, the most gorgeous thing is the gorgeous murals all around. These murals depict the life of Buddha - his birth, enlightenment, death and the 3 worlds! These were created here by various artists. Esp that image depicting Buddha in his last years was so intricate with all the detailing of his frail body with rib cage jutting out!
Out of this main section, all around the temple is a gorgeous waterbody filled with ducks and various other birds. In some sections it almost looks like a forest. There are Buddhas under several trees! Its a nature's haven!!!

P.S: Again at 15 more minutes of walk from here is the Windmill Museum. Unfortunately my visit to this place proved vain. The blades of the windmill had been removed for repair & renovation and the £2 entrance fee had to be paid in cash and unfortunately I didn't have even a penny of cash in hand and the cash machine was far away!!!

To Get There:
Nearest Tube Station: Wimbledon.

Bhushavali N

An ardent traveler by passion. I am a wanderlust.. Read more about me here.

21 comments:

  1. Oh, based on the pictures, I thougt it is somewhere in Thailand, but than I saw it is in London. Surprised to see temples like that.

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  2. I love how London has so many pockets to discover. I wish I had visited this temple when I lived there a while back. The murals are certainly stunning and the garden looks quite Zen!

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  3. This is a sign! You might not belive it but I have been thinking now a week to visit a Thai temple here in Switzerland. The one here is looking very similar to the Buddhapadipa temple in London. Even inside is very similar with amazing painting. Really, how strange isnt that I would stumble upon your post today about a thai temple in an european city! Buddhapadipa temple now is added to my visit-london list!

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  4. I wouldn’t think to visit a buhhdist temple in London, what an awesome idea! I love the foliage surrounding the temple and the history associated with it. I will definitely be checking this out when I visit London next!

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  5. The place looks surprisingly like a piece of tropical paradise right in a global metropolis like London. Thank you for making me aware of these little gems.

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  6. I lived in Thailand for 8 years and immediately thought this was a post from there! It's incredible that the Buddhapadipa temple is in England. More people who visit Wimbledon should make the 15 minute walk to see it! You took a wonderful reflection shot of the bridge, definitely Instagram worthy.

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  7. My first thought was this is somewhere in Thailand. Good to know that London has a piece of Thailand in it. Definitely worth a detour. I like those Thai art works depicting Buddha's life.

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  8. I had never heard of a Buddhist temple in London, so it’s a revelation to me. And to think, it’s almost 50 years old! It seems like many temples I have visited in Asia. I would love to visit Windmill museum too.

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  9. How amazing! Such juxtaposition of cultural elements, i.e., Buddhist architecture in a northwestern European country is nothing short of spectacular. I haven't been to London, but I heard the UK receives a lot of cloudy days. The golden Buddha statues give contrast to the otherwise glum skies.

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  10. The water body around the temple is gorgeous and adds to the whole serene feel of the temple. I did not even realize from the picture that this was London. And that is a surprise. Glad that you brought this one up. Next time for sure.

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  11. What a beautiful temple! Those murals are incredible and the grounds looks lovely as well. It would never have occurred to me to look for a Thai temple in London of all places, but I sure wouldn't mind visiting this one!

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  12. What a fantastic hidden gem you have in London. I never knew that there was a Thai Temple in the U.K. What a magnificent gift to the people of the U.K from Thailand.

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  13. Wow this place looks like out of this world. The colors of the Buddahapadipa TEMPLE are so pretty and perfect to take pictures. I would love to visit this one.

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  14. It's funny how Eastern architecture combined with the English gardens looks almost Japanese in places. The temple and Buddhas bring the scene back to the Thai roots. This is a beautiful place and a juxtaposition from the hustle and bustle of London. I could imagine visiting here to recharge from a London tour.

    Funny how this temple came from Thailand and not Burma or Sri Lanka or another Buddhist country that was actually part of the Common Wealth. I have always been impressed with how Thailand handles their foreign policy.

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  15. I've never even seen a temple in real life, let alone visited one... this is stunning. Gobsmacked to know it's in London of all places. Thanks for sharing this i've added the location to my google maps as a place to visit when I return to London.



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  16. If i would have not read your blog and just looked at the pictures, I would have thought this temple to be somewhere in Thailand. I had been to Wimbledon couple of times but never visit it. I know where to go next time. Thanks for sharing this.

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  17. Had no idea about the temple at all, so this is definitely a surprise and looking at the photos it really seems like you're nowhere close to London. Love the water body and of course the architecture of the temple is spectacular.

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  18. The most shocking part about all this for me was the location! I actually find myself in London today, so this might be an idea! Thanks a lot for bringing it to my attention!

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  19. What an interesting find in an unlikely place! We have buddhist temples in my hometown of Perth but none that look auhtentic like this one! For me I would love to visit for the gardens you describe so beautifully of being forest-like and filled with waterbirds. Sounds very serene in an otherwise busy city! The murals of Buddha sound good too!

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  20. The temple looks pretty awesome! I love exploring temples in new places! Love your photos!

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