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Myanmar Overview

Myanmar (Burma) remains one of the most mysterious and undiscovered destinations in the world, offering all the traditional delights of Asia in one country. It possesses a rich and vibrant cultural tradition, and great natural beauty along with magnificent temple architecture. Myanmar is also recognized as a tourist destination with a rich cultural heritage, blessed with a unique natural environment of snow-capped mountains, beautiful lakes, long rivers, lush tropical forests, unspoiled beaches and archipelago

There are four main stops on any Myanmar travel itinerary: Yangon travel, Mandalay travel, Bagan travel, Kyaikhtiyo travel, Inle Lake travel, and Monywa travel. In between, the country’s smaller towns, pristine beaches and remote mountain areas are wonderful additions for visitors who have more time to spare. Other popular Myanmar travel destinations include the trekking areas of Kalaw and Kengtung, the beaches of Ngapali and Ngwe Saung, or smaller towns such as Pindaya and Mrauk U.

Mandalay Travel

Mandalay was the last capital of the third Myanmar Empire. It is located 668 km north from Yangon. Mandalay’s value lies in that it is a repository of late Myanmar history. Mandalay embodies all the elements of Myanmar’s ancient educational, social and cultural system. Mandalay is the home and guardian of the best traditions of Myanmar music and dance .The Mandalayans preserves the proper spoken language of Myanmar. Symbols of religion are richer in Mandalay than in any of the living Myanmar city. It is the principal centre for studies of Buddhist literature. The other tourist attractions are Mandalay Hill, Mya-nan-san-kyaw Golden Palace, the old city walls and the moat; Mahamuni Image of Buddha, which is the most revered and sacred site of Mandalay; Kyauk-taw-gyi Buddha, white Marble huge seated image of the Buddha carved from a single block of stone; Kuthodaw Pagoda with the entire Buddhist scriptures inscribed on 729 marble slabs, known as the “World’s Biggest Book”; Shwenandaw Kyaung (Golden Palace Monastery), a superb example of a traditional Myanmar wooden monastery. One account states that during the reign of King Mindon, steamers began to come up to INNWA (AVA) and Amarapura. Since both towns were on the bank of the AYEYARWADDY(IRRAWADDY) RIVER, it would have been possible for the Europeans to bring artillery pieces up-river aboard the trading ships and to shell the then capital of AMARAPURA. King Mindon therefore decided that the capital should be moved some distance from the river, beyond the range of enemy fire. This must have been the original reason of founding Mandalay though there were some other reasons.

Monywa Travel

Monywa Myanmar is a city in Sagaing Division, Myanmar, located 136 km north-west of Mandalay on the eastern bank of the Chindwin River. It is along the Mandalay-Budalin branch railway line but is best reached by bus as the road from Mandalay is in reasonably good shape.

Monywa is a major trade center for agricultural produce from the surrounding Chindwin Valley, especially beans, orange pulses and jiggery (palm sugar). In addition, the local industry includes mills for the production of cotton, flour, noodles, and edible oils. Monywa’s rough cotton blankets are famous throughout Myanmar. Other regional crafts include bamboo and reed products, bullock carts and agricultural implements.

This place is a must for the culture buff! It takes a little time to make this overnight excursion, but it is well worth the while. A 140 km drive in NW direction brings us to Monywa sprawling along the Chindwin River. En route: Visit of the pagodas of Thanbodday – a Hollywood fantasy specialist could have been godfather here – but see for yourself (without fail!). The true highlights of our Monywa excursion are the Buddhist cave temples of Powindaung, an artistic jewel among spiritually inspired building (wall paintings, Buddha galleries, rock carvings) dating back to the 14th till 16th centuries. Powingdaung takes its name from the alchemist U Powin who lived in this mountainous region hundreds of years ago. In order to reach the caves we have to cross the Chindwin river by boat, from there onward pickups take us on an approx. 1 hour’s drive to the site. Make provisions for spending the night at Monywa. Bone fragments, traces of ancient settling and reaching way back to mankind ´s early days, have been found in the nearby mountains of Pontaung Ponnya. And for those aficionados of real trekking and elephant rides through monsoon forests, there is possibly another rewarding destination: the Alaundaw Kathapa National Park 100 km NW of Monywa.


A-Z of Destinations Myanmar