Are you looking for peace and enlightenment in Benalmadena? Look no further for I have found it, just along the road from Aldi!
The Buddhist temple known as the Stupa of Enlightenment sits on a hill with tremendous views of the Costa del Sol. It is a place of tranquility (unless a coach tour arrives while you are there!) and if you need some peace and a place to think, it should be top of your list. It’s been there since 2003 and stands over a hundred feet tall, the largest Stupa in the Western world.
Inside it is beautifully decorated with traditional Buddhist scenes depicting the life of The Buddha. The smell of burning incense permeates everywhere and adds to the feeling of serenity as you turn a prayer wheel in the search for inner peace. Outside, prayer flags flutter in the breeze and you can buy something for your spiritual wellbeing in the gift shop or the cafe. Underneath is an additional space for exhibitions related to Tibetan Buddhism, the Himalayan culture and Stupas around the world. The site is closed on Mondays though!
“The tradition to build Stupas originated in the times of the historical Buddha Shakyamuni, more than 2500 years ago. A Stupa represents the Enlightenment, the nature of a totally awakened mind. In ancient Buddhist texts it is said that the construction of a Stupa is of enormous benefit for all sentient beings.”
– H.H. 17th Gyalwa Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje, spiritual guide and advisor of the Asociación Cultural Karma Kagyu de Benalmádena.
Nearby are the Benalmadena Butterfly Gardens but as I didn’t visit I can’t really tell you more!