They call the Suwankuha Temple Phuket the temple with big Buddha in a cave. That’s right. It is in complex caves near Phang Nga Bay. Also known as Wat Suwan Kuha Temple or Wat Tham if you like, most of the people visiting the regions for excursions such as water rafting and elephant rides or Phang Nga Bay boat tours are the ones who stop by here as they pass through. Plus, the temple is just 10km before one reaches the town.

The good thing about making the visit to the temple a priority is that it connects visitors with the rich and fascinating cultural, historical and religious ways of the Thai people. This temple is a uniquely constructed Buddhist temple, which is a bit unknown to most foreigners. Besides being a great tourist destination, Suwankuha Temple Phuket is a fully functioning and respected holy place of worship for the local Buddhists of Thailand.

What to expect at the temple

There is a four-cave system going on here with the largest, the subterranean Tham Yai, holding a considerable number of Buddha figures as well as other important ceramic spiritual standing and some seated.

The highlight of the temple and the subject of worship for religious pilgrims and Buddhist monks is a spectacular 15-metre reclining gold Buddha. Its golden hue and high level of creativity well definitely have your eyes glued on it. There are two tiny shrines behind it for those on the religious spirit to light up some incense and pray.

There is mystical, unearthly theme going on here. This is because of the of the dimness of the lighting of the cave as well as the limited natural lighting that gets into the Wat Suwan Kuha Temple. What even adds to the other-worldly atmosphere of the temple is the soft echoes of people’s footsteps and voices.  To get to Tham Yai cave, one will have to descend down a gentle staircase.

Despite the holding the temple the cavern complex still oozes the atmosphere of a natural cave with stalactites and stalagmites embellishing the caves. Expect to find lots of birds and bats here.

The external bit of the Suwankuha Temple Phuket cave can be viewed as a tourist site. Get ready to get teased by a troop of cheeky monkeys who reside at the entrance watching out for dropped food as well as hoping for some handouts. Their mischief can quite entertainment for the visitors. Watch out as sometimes, these monkeys steal stuff so take care of your food, bags and purses.

In case you get bored at Wat Suwan Kuha Temple you can trek father to Raman Waterfall National Forests. If you are looking to treat yourself to some appetizing seafood there are plenty of restaurants at the coast of Phang Nga Bay.

Getting to the temple

From Phuket, the road to Phang Nga is amazing.  There is a considerable number of Buddhist temples and mosques as you head to Phang Nga Town. One of the things that might throw you off a bit is that there is no sign at the turn off to Suwankuha Temple Phuket. It’s a bit tricky especially for tourist as the writings at the entrance of the temple is in Thai language.

One needs to follow the sign towards Raman Waterfall National Forest. The temple is nearly half a kilometre on that road. Luckily, you won’t need to worry about packing because there is plenty of it and it can accommodate a good number of tourists.

As you head to the temple, the view itself is as fantastic as the temple itself. You will pass eye-catching limestone cliffs, rubber tree groves as well as high-class views of some of the most spectacular coastlines on Phuket’s mainland.