Three of the strangest things made of gold

Gold has been used for all sort of strange things throughout the years. Here are three of the strangest.

A five-tonne, £134m Buddha

Solid gold Buddha statue © Kushal Das (from Wikipedia)

Source: Kushal Das (from Wikipedia)

This is the largest solid gold Buddha statue in the world. You can find it Wat Traimit in Bangkok, Thailand.

The statue stands an impressive three metres tall and weighs a staggering 5.5 tonnes. So, at current gold prices of $1,280 an ounce, it’s worth around £134m.

Now, golden Buddha statues aren’t all that rare. But the incredible thing about this one – other than its size – is that it was lost for hundreds of years in an abandoned temple. It had been covered in plaster to hide its true value, and was then forgotten.

Thought to have been made during the 13th to 14th centuries, it wasn’t until the statue was moved (and dropped) in 1955 that some of its plaster fell off to reveal what was hidden beneath.

The world’s rarest camera

Leica Luxus II Bonhams auction house

Source: Bonhams auction house.

In 1932, Leica produced four golden Luxus II cameras. This one was discovered on The Antiques Roadshow in 2001. The whereabouts of the other three remains unknown.

At the time The Antiques Roadshow’s ‘experts’ estimated it to be worth around £5,000. It was sold at auction in November 2013 for £380,000.

A gold-plated barbecue

Beefeater gold barbecue © BeefEater Barbecues

Source: BeefEater Barbecues

If your barbecue is beginning to rust away and wasn’t quite up to the job on the last bank holiday, then why not replace it with this one?

It’s the world’s most expensive – £97,700 – and most golden barbecue. All gold-plated everything (except for the cooking surfaces).

It’s hand-made by the Australian company, BeefEater Barbecues, who recommend it to people “who want to make a statement with their barbecue and have the money to burn”.

How to buy gold in 2014

At MoneyWeek, we've always believed in the power of gold. It's been exchanged for thousands of years & a proven store of value. We think you should put at least a proportion of your wealth in the metal.

So to help you make an informed decision, we've compiled a FREE report called 'The Gold Profit Plan'. It'll show you exactly why gold is such a powerful asset – and how you can go about buying it.

To claim your free report and start receiving MoneyWeek's free daily email Money Morning, simply enter your email address below.

Simon Popple
Metals and Miners


Comment on this article

MoneyWeek magazine

Latest issue:

Magazine cover
Paying by mobile

Why your phone will replace your wallet

The UK's best-selling financial magazine. Take a FREE trial today.
Claim 4 FREE Issues
Shale gas 'fracking' promises to transform Britain's energy market. Find out what it is, what it means, and how to invest.

Which investment platform?

When it comes to buying shares and funds, there are several investment platforms and brokers to choose from. They all offer various fee structures to suit individual investing habits.
Find out which one is best for you.