Sculptures at Ko Samuis Secret Buddha Garden in Thailand. Sculptures at Ko Samuis Secret Buddha Garden in Thailand.

The Secret Buddha Garden Experience: The Koh Samui’s Mystery

Do you know what’s more mysterious than a magician’s disappearing act? The captivating tale of how a retired fruit farmer turned a hillside on Koh Samui into a mesmerising masterpiece But that’s not all—there’s a twist!

Nestled among the lush hills of Koh Samui, Thailand, lies The Secret Buddha Garden, also known as the Tarnim Magic Garden. This hidden gem is a testament to the artistic and spiritual journey of a local farmer, Nim Thongsuk.


In 1976, Nim embarked on a remarkable project, inspired by his love for nature and his deep spiritual beliefs. Little did he know that his creation would become a cherished attraction for travellers from across the globe.

The Secret Buddha Garden enchants visitors with its exquisite statues, sculptures, and cascading waterfalls, all harmoniously embedded in a tropical paradise. Each element within the garden symbolizes a facet of Buddhist mythology, inviting you to explore its winding paths, immerse yourself in the natural surroundings, and delve into the rich tapestry of Thai culture and spirituality.

Whether you seek a tranquil retreat or an enlightening experience, the Secret Buddha Garden is an absolute must-see when visiting Koh Samui.

1. History of The Secret Buddha Garden

The garden was created by Nim Thongsuk, a fruit farmer who retired and started to build sculptures and structures in the garden in 1976.

Nim was inspired by his dream to create a place where people could come to relax and appreciate nature. Over the years, Nim continued to add to the garden, creating more sculptures and structures.

What makes the Secret Buddha Garden exceptional is its dazzling handcrafted sculptures. Nim Thongsuk dedicated years of his life to shaping these perplexing works of craftsmanship. These sculptures are inspired by Buddhist and Hindu mythology, depicting a wide array of gods, creatures, and legendary figures. The attention to detail is nothing short of astonishing.

In 2001, the garden was opened to the public, and it quickly became a popular tourist attraction. Visitors could explore the garden and see the intricate sculptures, waterfalls, and ponds.

In 2002, Nim passed away, but his legacy lives on through the garden. The garden is now maintained by his family, who continue to add new sculptures and structures to the garden.

Today, the Secret Buddha Garden is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Koh Samui, and it continues to inspire visitors with its beauty and tranquilly.

2. Location of the Secret Buddha Garden

The Secret Buddha Garden is located in the hills of Koh Samui, Thailand. The garden is situated in the centre of the island, near the highest point of Samui, which is known as Khao Pom. The garden is hidden away from the main tourist areas and is surrounded by lush jungle and stunning views.

3. Local Culture and Traditions

The Secret Buddha Garden on Koh Samui resonates with the island’s rich culture and traditions. Inspired by Buddhism and Hinduism, the garden’s intricate sculptures, painstakingly created by local farmer Nim Thongsuk, evoke reverence and spirituality. Thai culture places a strong emphasis on respect and mindfulness, as reflected in the garden’s tranquil ambience.

Visitors may witness rituals and offerings, especially during significant religious events, while practising modest attire and respectful behaviour. This hidden gem serves as a cultural sanctuary, blending local artistry, spiritual devotion, and the lush beauty of the island, offering a unique space where culture and tradition are celebrated in harmony with nature.

4. Reasons Why You Should Visit The Secret Buddha Garden

4.1 Statues and Sculptures

secret buddha garden statues
Source: freepik

The lush and verdant garden is graced with a diverse array of well over 100 statues and sculptures, each possessing its own enchanting narrative and intricate symbolism. From the tranquil Buddha statues that exude an aura of peace to the fantastical and mythical creatures and a menagerie of majestic animals, the artistry and craftsmanship showcased in these masterpieces are guaranteed to captivate your senses and leave you utterly mesmerised.

4.2 Cascading Waterfalls

The garden is artistically adorned with a plethora of breathtaking waterfalls, their cascading waters creating a harmonious symphony that accompanies your expedition through this idyllic realm. These mesmerizing water features not only enhance the prevailing serenity but also bestow upon you the gift of a soothing soundtrack, rendering this sanctuary a haven for introspection and relaxation.

tranquil forest waterfall
Source: Tripadvisor

4.3 Buddhist Mythology

Each sculpture and architectural marvel within the garden is imbued with profound significance and meticulously crafted to represent the multifaceted facets of Buddhist mythology. As you meander through this hallowed ground, you shall have the golden opportunity to immerse yourself in the captivating narratives and the deep-seated significance they hold—an enriching journey into the heart of spiritual understanding.

4.4 Panoramic Views

The garden affords magnificent, sweeping vistas of Koh Samui’s breathtaking coastline that stretch as far as the eye can see. It serves not merely as a haven for art and spirituality but also as a spectacular backdrop for photography, permitting you to seize those awe-inspiring moments that encapsulate the sheer beauty of this enchanting island.

Whether you’re capturing the fiery hues of a tropical sunset over the glistening waters or the tranquil blues of the ocean meeting the lush greenery of the garden, each snapshot is a testament to the sublime beauty of nature’s grandeur.

forest waterfall serene nature
Source: Tripadvisor

5. Transport Options

There are several ways to get to the Secret Buddha Garden. Visitors can rent a motorcycle or car and drive themselves to the garden. However, the roads leading up to the garden can be steep and winding, so it is recommended that only experienced drivers attempt this route.

Another option is to take a taxi or hire a private driver. Many hotels and resorts on the island offer shuttle services to the garden, and several tour companies offer guided trips to the Secret Buddha Garden.

For those who prefer a more adventurous route, there are also hiking trails that lead up to the garden. These trails can be challenging, but they offer stunning views of the island and are a great way to experience the natural beauty of Koh Samui.

No matter how visitors choose to get to the Secret Buddha Garden, they are sure to be rewarded with a unique and unforgettable experience.

6. The Recommended Time For Exploring The Secret Buddha Garden

Visiting the Secret Buddha Garden in the morning offers a tranquil experience. The garden’s peaceful ambiance is enhanced by fewer crowds and cooler temperatures. Soft morning light casts a beautiful glow on the sculptures and lush greenery, making it an ideal time for meditation, exploration, and appreciation of the spiritual and cultural aspects.

By choosing the morning hours, you can fully absorb the garden’s serene atmosphere before the day gets busier, ensuring a more contemplative and enjoyable visit.

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Last Updated on March 22, 2024 by soubhik


  1. The way all the aspects of the garden, its view in present times, its origin story and what not to miss while visiting there are all worth reading!!

  2. The Secret Buddha Garden sounds like a hidden gem! The detailed descriptions in this article make me feel like I’m already there. The article not only unveils the secrets but also paints a vivid picture of the enchanting experience one can have at the Secret Buddha Garden.

  3. Discover the captivating Secret Buddha Garden on Koh Samui, Thailand, a masterwork created by Nim Thongsuk, a retired fruit farmer. This undiscovered treasure is a tranquil fusion of art, spirituality, and natural beauty with more than 100 enthralling statues, tumbling waterfalls, and expansive island vistas. A must-go-to place for a peaceful getaway and a cultural education deep in Thai mythology.

  4. This is truly a gem worth visiting. I wonder how much time one needs to comfortably enjoy this whole place? I am also very curious about how locals use this place!

  5. The most considerate part of the Secret Buddha Garden is that it has over 100 sculptures and your detailing of the facts made it more interesting for me, your way of writing is considerate that I like the most about this post.

  6. This article unfolds the enchanting story of The Secret Buddha Garden. From the lush sculptures to the cascading waterfalls, it’s like a magical journey through art and spirituality. Adding this hidden gem to my travel bucket list! Thanks for the captivating guide!

  7. Excellent article with a well-explained scenario! People have been looking for peaceful areas. I propose that all of them read your content. Just reading about this site brought me such peace. I know that someday I will visit this location during the morning hours to thoroughly enjoy the garden’s tranquil environment. I’m confident I’d have a more contemplative and delightful time. Thank you for mentioning this place that is worth visiting.

  8. The Secret Buddha Garden’s history is truly fascinating, showcasing the remarkable transformation of a retired fruit farmer’s vision into a mesmerizing masterpiece. Nim Thongsuk’s dedication to creating handcrafted sculptures inspired by Buddhist and Hindu mythology is awe-inspiring. The garden’s opening to the public in 2001 and its continued evolution, even after Nim’s passing in 2002, highlight the enduring legacy of this hidden gem.

  9. Wow, what an enchanting journey this article takes us on! This seems like a hidden gem waiting to be discovered. The vivid descriptions and captivating narrative make me want to uncover the mysteries of this sacred haven.

  10. what a beautiful place looks so magical, I’m a Buddhist follower and this place is really good for invoking our spiritual energy.
    Really want to visit this place and mark it on my bucket list.

  11. The Nim Thongsuk’s sculptures in the garden, would undoubtedly make for a fantastic experience. The island also sounds like an amazing place to explore rich culture and traditions. The inclusion of its precise location in the article would greatly assist potential visitors. The article has certainly raised my interest in doing just that.

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