Standing above a river on the western coast of India, a tribute to the country's “unifier” stands tall. The Statue of Unity is so large that it is the tallest statue in the world. Completed in 2018, it depicts lawyer, politician, and statesman Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
Just who is this man being honored? Patel was a champion of India's independence from Britain and served as the first deputy prime minister and home minister of independent India. Raised in the countryside of Gurajat, the state where the Statue of Unity is located, he was one of Gandhi's earliest lieutenants and staged peaceful protests against British rule. He is also credited with uniting the 565 self-governing states that existed after British rule ended. This effectively pulled together the country to form the India we know today.
To celebrate his achievements, it was announced in 2013 that a statue would be erected in his honor. Ram V. Sutar, a prolific Indian sculptor, had already designed a statue of the leader for the Ahmedabad International Airport and it was decided that the Statue of Unity would be an enlarged version of that sculpture.
October 31, 2018
597 ft ( 182 m)
Cement, Steel, Bronze
Ram V. Sutar
With a height of 182 meters (597 feet), an incredible amount of materials and engineering skills were needed to create the statue. The sculpture's height was specifically chosen to reflect the 182 seats of the Gurajat Legislative Assembly. The enormous sculpture sits on a base that is 50 meters (190 feet) and allows the figure to almost hover above the landscape. That brings the Statue of Unity's total height to 232 meters (787 feet)
The sculpture is so large that there was no foundry in India equipped to cast the bronze pieces that clad the steel and concrete core. The pieces were eventually cast in China, based on 3D scans, and shipped back to India, where they were assembled on site. All told, over 5,600 bronze panels were created. If one also takes into consideration the bronze panels on the facade, 3,550 tonnes of bronze were used in the Statue of Unity.
Intended to stand as a symbol of the nation's spiritual, historical, and academic values, the Statue of Unity towers over other large sculptures around the world. The previous tallest statue in the world, the Spring Temple Buddha in China, sits at 153 meters (502 feet), while another large sculpture—the Statue of Liberty—seems almost small at just 93 meters (305 feet).
Inaugurated in 2018 on the 143rd anniversary of Vallabhbhai Patel's birth, today the Statue of Unity is a thriving tourist destination. The public can access three zones inside the statue, including an observation deck located at chest level on the sculpture. The Statue of Unity also includes a museum dedicated to Patel's life and his contributions to unifying India. By 2021, 5 million people had visited the Statue of Unity, and its daily visitor count had even surpassed the Statue of Liberty.
To see the opening hours of the Statue of Unity and book entry tickets, visit the official website.
The world's largest sculpture, Statue of Unity, is 597 feet tall and located in India.
What is the world's tallest statue?
At 597 feet tall, the Statue of Unity in Gujarat, India is the world's tallest statue.
What is inside the Statue of Unity?
The public can access areas that include a museum, observation gallery, and exhibition area. The observation is located at 502 feet, roughly at chest level on the statue.
Who is the person in the Statue of Unity?
The Statue of Unity depicts Vallabhbhai Patel, who was the first deputy prime minister and home minister of independent India.
How tall is the Statue of Unity?
The Statue of Unity is 597 feet (182 meters) tall.
Who designed the Statue of Unity?
Ram V. Sutar is the Indian sculptor who designed the Statue of Unity.