Interesting stories behind the 11 most colossal statues in the world

The best way to understand the story of a city is by visiting its most colossal statue because statues tell the stories deep in people’s hearts that their mouths often can’t utter. Now, the bigger the statue, the louder its story is because when it is hard to miss, it is hard to ignore. Now, while the statue is important, the story behind it determines its size, shape, color, and most importantly, its location. Whenever Colossal Statues are mentioned today, most people think of the Statue of Liberty in Manhattan or Jesus the Redeemer in Rio but these are just the tip of the iceberg as far as the world’s largest statues are concerned. Here is a look at the transformative inspirations behind the 11 most colossal statues around the world.

11. The Statue of Liberty, USA

The Statue of Liberty is not the tallest in the world, no! but its mere mention is enough to tell any stranger what to expect when they arrive in America. A land once ravaged by wars, torture, and the pain of slavery turned into a symbol of freedom for the whole world. The rise of America as the land of free after the Declaration of the Emancipation in 1863 reverberated worldwide, and Europe felt it too. Two decades later, In I886, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of this great nation and its friendship with the people of France, France gifted the US with the mighty Statue of Liberty. Its greatness does not really lie in the size but in the untold stories of billions of people around the world who are represented by the famous statue, most of whom have never even seen it. 

Standing on a 154ft pedestal on Liberty Island, and itself measuring 151ft, the Statue of Liberty stands at an intimidating height of 305ft, making it visible from as far away as 50 miles on a clear day. It is the creation of the French Sculptor Fredrich Augusto Bartholdi. The steel framework was designed by Alexander Eiffel, the creator of the Eiffel Tower. 

10. Christ The Redeemer, Brazil

This statue was recently included in the new 7 Wonders of the World. It is the fifth largest statue of Jesus in the world, but the most famous because of its importance to the city of Rio De Janeiro and Brazil as a whole. It was proposed as a commemoration for Princess Regent of Brazil Isabela in 1850 but permission for construction was not given until 1921. The initial design made by the Brazilian Engineer Hector da Silva Costa was not the open-arm Jesus we see today. 

The idea was to create an image of Jesus that showed his love and welcoming nature for all humanity and as a result, Silva Costa proposed an image of Jesus carrying a cross in one arm and the globe in the other. Oswald Silva Costa corrected the design to the open arm, Jesus, we see today standing 98 feet high with arms stretched 92 feet apart. It has been the victim of vandalism over the years but not without accomplishing its purpose. It remains the most famous statue of Jesus in the world with nearly two million visitors annually. 

9. The Great Sphinx at Giza, Egypt

Most people think of Pyramids whenever Egypt is mentioned but they forget that the Sphinx is the guardian of all the pyramids. It is one of the great mysteries of Ancient Egypt. No one knows exactly why the pharaohs made it, its actual extent, or its actual date of construction. It is nearly 75 meters long and 20 meters high making it the largest statue of any ancient civilization. Most of it lies underground, with its head, believed to depict a lion (but it could also be a cobra) facing the sunrise.

Part of its nose and beard were chipped off when it was discovered allegedly by Napoleon Bonaparte’s soldiers, so it is hard to know exactly what its face looked like. It was buried under the dust for years which is why no one really knew its actual extent. Its tail extends into Memphis where pharaohs are buried, which is why most historians believe it stood as the protector of the pharaohs in their resting places in the pyramids.

8. The Statue of Decebalus, Romania

This statue was commissioned by professor Giuseppe Constantino who largely believed that the Dacians had the earliest form of civilization and that the bravery of King Decebalus who defended the ancient empire of Dacia to his death was worth remembering. It stands as the largest rock statue in Europe at 40 meters high on The Romanian side of the Danube. 

Decebalus fell to the Roman emperor Trajan in 106 BCE after defending the territory fiercely through three major battles against the greatest power in the world at the time. His face was sculptured into the rock to represent the dominance of the Dacian culture in Romania and also to recognize the bravery of that empire`s last king. The work took 10 years, with 12 professional sculptors supervising the tough project from 1993 to 2004. It is now used to remember the earliest civilization in Europe and probably the entire world with over 1 million visitors annually.

7. The Motherland Calls, Russia

This is Europe`s tallest statue Built to commemorate the victory of the Soviet Union against the Nazi invasion in the battle of Stalingrad in 1942 which actually marked the most significant Soviet triumph in WWII. The events of the battle changed the course of the war against the Axis forces which is why the Russians decided it was the right place to construct the tallest statue in the world. Joseph Stalin chose Evgeny Vucetic, one of the world`s greatest sculptors to create the monument to commemorate over 30,000 soldiers buried at the foot of the statue.

 It took a total of 2400 tons of steel and 5500 tons of concrete to complete the 87-meter-tall statue which was the tallest in the world at the time.  The statue shows a woman who stands with a raised sword, an open mouth signifying a brave call to her sons to defend the land, and an open arm ready to fight. The 33-meter-long sword was the most complicated aspect because it was initially made of stainless steel which shook in the wind. It was repaired in 1972 with fluorinated steel to withstand the winds.

6. The Spring Temple Buddha, China

This is the statue that held the Guinness World record for the tallest statue in the world until 2018 when the Statue of Unity in India broke that record. Huge is the only word that can be used to describe this Buddha because, at 502ft above the ground, the Buddha, 20 minutes from Lushan China is a spectacle to behold. It was commissioned as China’s response (and warning) to the destruction of Buddha statues in Afghanistan in 2001 by the Taliban. 

The Chinese Government decided to convert a whole hill into a holy site for the Buddha creating a temple on the hill consisting of a diamond seat and a Sumeru seat with the Buddha on top. It is made of 108kg of Gold, 3300 tons of copper, and 15000 tons of steel. Reaching the top of the two seats to touch the Buddha`s feet is a long reflectional journey where visitors have to climb over 1000 stairs. It is still a great place to be despite its remote location, which is why it made this list.

5. The Leshan Giant Buddha, China

While the Spring Temple is the tallest, this one takes the record for the largest stone Buddha in the world and equally stands out as a wonder considering the amount of work needed to achieve the efficiency of its sculpture. Estimated to be at least 1300 years old, this is one of the oldest Buddha statues in the world but the attraction is in the hair. The Buddha`s head has more than 1000 curls curved and fixed expertly on its head. 

The rest of the body was curved from the rock except for the ears which are made of wood and fixed using clay. The final image of the Buddha is a happy monk seated with arms resting on his knees watching the river flow past his feet. It is the site of millions of visits annually especially to pilgrims who seek to feel the spirituality of the holy site around Mt. Lingyun where the statue is curved and also the rivers that flow from his feet.

4. Genghis Khan Equestrian Statue, Mongolia

Of course, after conquering half of the known world, you would expect the legend of Mongolia to have a great statue which is why he had to be on the list. This is the largest Equestrian statue made purely of stainless steel. It is located at the banks of Tuul River, 54 kilometers west of Ulaanbaatar at the site where Genghis is believed to have found the golden whip that he used to conquer the world. Genghis is infamous in the West for his brutality during his conquests but Mongolia reveres him as the great Khan that put Mongolia on the world map.

They had no problem erecting the statue of Genghis on horseback on a two-story building designed like an ancient European Gothic house. Visitors have a chance to take an elevator up the 40-meter statue to the head of the horse to get a view of the surroundings. The site is also a museum dedicated to the 36 Khans of Mongolia with antique shops and Mongolian cuisines inside designed to reflect everything Mongolian.

3.    Ushiku Daibutsu, Japan

This was the tallest statue in the world until 2002 when the Chinese constructed the great  Spring Temple Buddha. It is however still very famous and really inspiring standing 394 feet above the ground and surrounded by two kilometers of beautiful flower gardens. It depicts Amitabha, the Buddha of infinite light and still one of the greatest tourist attractions in Japan. In reality, it is a four-story bronze building built In the shape of a Buddha with its famous fourth floor located in the chest of the Buddha where you can get a clear view of the breathtaking landscape below. 

The other floors have shrines and thousands of Buddha statues. A visit from April to May gives people a view of the vast carpet of poppies below while autumn in October and November gives an even more spectacular site of a carpet of flowers. It is used to depict the goodness of the Buddha who is believed to have reincarnated many times after his enlightenment to perform many good deeds that brought light and beauty to the world.

2. Laykyun Setkyar Buddha, Myanmar 

This is largely a place of worship but the impressive sight of two of the world`s largest Buddhas has turned it into one of Myanmar`s greatest tourist attraction sites. It has the second tallest standing Buddha at 420ft and the largest reclining Buddha in the world at 331ft. It was commissioned by the respected Buddhist Bodhi Tahtaung in Po Khaung Taung.  The reclining Buddha is hollow housing more than 9000 statues of the Buddha. The standing Buddha is, however, the most intriguing. It has 31 stories with each level depicting the levels of life and Hell in the ancient Buddha religion. It has drawings of the different levels of hell, some too graphic for the faint-hearted because they explain the punishment for every sin in the Buddhist hell. Visitors can take an elevator and get a view of the holy ground below full of Bodhi trees with the Buddha sitting under each of them in meditation.

  1. The Statue of Unity, Gujarat, India

Standing at 182 metres (597ft), huge is the best single-word summary for this giant statue which is nearly double the height of the Statue of Liberty. It was commissioned in 2010 by the prime minister of India, Narendra Modi a gift to the state. It depicts India’s first deputy prime minister and independence activist Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel in a walking pose.


His dedication to serving the nation and relentless fight for its independence made him the perfect figure to portray the spirit of India in a statue. Eclipsing China’s Spring Temple Buddha by over 90ft, the Statue of Unity is an unrivaled architectural miracle. However, the statue faces lots of criticism for the high cost of its construction estimated at over $442 million which many citizens felt could have been put to better use.

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