Coming to Myanmar (Burma), Mandalay is a popular destination that tourist cannot miss out because of its charm and mystery. In ancient time, King Mindon chose Mandalay as one of royal capital cities around the vast ground of Royal Palace. The King also assigned many impressive monuments around the Palace. The following 7 wonders are interesting options you may take to explore this beautiful place.
- Mandalay Hill
The Mandalay Hill stands at 240m high so it’s a long stair climb or you can take a taxi & escalator. The route may be rough but it’s worthy. Imagine that you are on the top of Mandalay Hill and how wonderful the feeling can be? From here you can get the best views of Mandalay including old city walls and moats, stupas, temples and pagodas, the commercial center, the Irrawaddy River and mountains on the horizon.
- Mandalay Palace and Fort
If China has Beijing’s Forbidden City Burma gets Mandalay Palace & Fort. This complex was more than just royal living quarter it was a walled city within Mandalay. The palace is not as its original version but in 1989, a devoted reconstruction process started. You can enjoy wonderful views from royal mausoleums on the grounds , a royal mint to clock tower.
- Mahamuni Paya
The most important Buddhist site in the city, Mahamuni Paya is a large complex south of the centre. According to ancient history, only five likenesses of the Buddha were created in his lifetime – 1 of them is here in Myanmar at Mahamuni Paya. This statue of the Buddha is cast in bronze & weighs 6.5 tons. It is seated on a throne upon a 6-ft high pedestal & measures 3.8m in height. Mahamuni Paya is a major pilgrimage site for Burmese Buddhists.
- Kuthodaw Paya (Pagoda)
Known as the World’s Largest Book, Kuthodaw Pagoda is a complex consisting of temples, 729 small tower made of white marble called kyauksa gu. Each of the 729 marble slabs at Kuthodaw Paya is carved with a page of the Buddhist canon “Tipitala”. They are housed in an individual stupa, surrounding a central 57m high golden stupa. It is said that it would take 450 days to complete reading of the entire “book” if you read it for 8hrs a day.
- Sandamuni Paya
Sandamuni Paya is an outstanding place to visit which is comprised of 1773 marble slabs of Buddhist script among palm trees. Although number of slabs is more than that of Kuthodaw but it doesn’t hold the title World’s Largest Book because its inscriptions are explanation on the Tripitaka canon, not the official text itself.
- Shwenandaw Kyaung
Shwenandaw Kyaung is the only original building that’s remained up to now which was originally part of the royal palace where King Mindon lived. It’s not over-exaggerated per se to say it’s a true masterpiece in Burmese teak wood architecture. The elaborate details of the woodcarvings, symbolising Buddhist myths, possess incredible depth and character.
- Atumashi Kyaung
Atumashi Kyaung is famous for its yellow, ochre and white five-tiered wedding cake structure. There is a large hall with a Buddha statue inside the monastery. It was originally built from teak wood, before being heavily damaged in an 1890 fire.