Paris Gold Buddha (& Pagoda Temple) reopen in Bois de Vincennes REPOST!

Europe’s largest (covered) Buddha was on rare display this weekend after a 5 year, million euro renovation of its Paris home. The gold-leaf covered Buddha, 9 meters high, resides in a Buddhist temple in the Bois de Vicennes (virtually on the shores of lac Daumensil) in Paris’s 12th Arrondissement.

The Pagoda was originally part of the Cameroon Pavilion created for the 1931 Colonial Exposition, a long ago –bizarre–concept which showcased the cultures, customs, artifacts of France’s colonies. Each had its own pavilion. How times change!  Most of the 1931 pavilions have disappeared into the murk of history, …though the neighbouing Togo pavilion, also in urgent need of a major reno) can be seen just over the fence. Renovating the Togo pavilion would be a massive project. I’m told the original specialized roof shakes, for example are far more complicated a design than those of the Cameroonian pavilion and restoration would be herculean. Still…one never knows! 

The area alone in the Bois de Vincennes is worth the trip. It’s an easy 15 minute, and rewarding walk from the Metro (line 8, Porte Doree) into the Bois, where you simply hug the shore of lac de Daumensil, and watch the majestic swans glide along the surface. If so inclined you can even rent a boat and row/drift out to middle of the lac and…daydream.

The Bois de Vincennes is one of Paris’s largest public parks in the city, created in 1855-66 by Emperor Napoleon III.


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