Sometimes you just gotta get away and see something you've never seen before. Luckily for us, we live in Montana which tends to have a little bit of everything... including 1,000 Buddhas!

Normally I spend my weekends treking up huge mountains and exploring trails that take you to beautiful waterfalls and incredible lookouts. But for years I'd heard stories about a place called the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas, located just north of Arlee. So I finally set aside some time to go and check it out for myself, and I'm so glad I did!

Here's a little bit about the garden:

The purpose of the Garden is to bring about positive transformation within those who visit, in response to the negativity that abounds in the world today. One thousand hand-cast Buddha statues are arrayed around the central figure of Yum Chenmo, or the Great Mother, the manifestation of the perfection of wisdom. One thousand stupas, representations of the enlightened mind, line the outer circle. Each enshrine an image of the female deity, Tara. Elegantly adorned with native trees and flowers, it is hoped that the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas will instill lasting impressions of peacefulness and compassion. If you find this vision inspiring, please take your time enjoying what this site has to offer, and consider how you might benefit from helping to bring such a vision into reality.

In person, the garden was absolutely beautiful. With mountains close by and a beautiful big sky up above, the location couldn't be any better for people to go and find peace. And in a world like ours, that's a pretty special thing!

The only real piece of advice I'd give, other than to go, is to go on a warmer day. There's a lot to see and if you plan on spending some time there to mediate or relax, it'll probably be easier to do if your teeth aren't chattering!

The Garden of One Thousand Buddhas is open to the public year round:

  • Winter Hours:  9 am – dusk
  • Memorial Day – Labor Day:  8 am – dusk 

For the record, I am endorsed by Bob Wards here in Missoula and we have an awesome business partnership together. Everything I write about Bob Wards and their products that they pay for me to use is based on my personal experience.