Mandalay

  • Location: 600 kilometers north of Yangon
  • Status: capital city of Mandalay Region
  • Population: approximately 1.6 million
  • Area: 915.1 square kilometers
  • Religions: Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam
  • Myanmar’s second largest city and also its last royal capital

Located approximated 600 kilometers north of Yangon, along the Ayeyarwaddy River (meaning 'mother of water'), Mandalay is Myanmar's second largest city as well as the main communication and trading center in the northern and central part of the country. This capital city of Mandalay region is accessible through road, airway and railway.

Along the roadsides from the airport to the city, there are stretching wheat fields alternating sunflower fields. However, the bright yellow color of sunflowers is not as bright as the warm smiles and enthusiasm of local people.

Formerly known as Ratanapunja, Mandalay towards Burma is much like Kyoto towards Japan, or Hue towards Vietnam – it is the royal capital of the final independent Burmese Kingdom before being conquered by British colony in 1886. Later on, the city was named after Mandalay Hill, a charming hill of 236 meter high. The present Mandalay still successfully maintains its great importance as the heart and soul of Burmese culture as well as Buddhism thanks to its 142 year life span rich in historical sites, Buddhist edifices and cultural memorials.

The most remarkable feature of Mandalay tourism is its palace structure. At first, the pavilion was built in traditional Myanmar architecture style from 1857 to 1861 (King Mindon’s dynasty) under the guidance of two Italian supervisors. The walls of Palace pavilion are made from glass mosaic.  After being destroyed during the World War II, Mandalay Palace was reconstructed in 1995, with the exact recreation of its original throne rooms and pavilions. In addition, other royal palaces of last feudal Burma dynasties can be found in Mandalay’s suburbs as well as neighbor areas. The oldest one is located at Sagaing village, which used to be Mandalay’s capital in the fourteenth century. Vestiges from a golden age are still remained in around 500 stupas, which can best be seen on the top of Sagaing Hill. 

Buddhist monasteries are also worth your try while you are spending time at this charming city, with wonderful wood carving and building techniques. Located in Mandalay’s center, with hundreds of white towers, Kuthodaw Paya is known as “the largest book in the world”. According to Burmese history, in 1872, as Buddhist scripture was corrected and recited, the Fifth Buddhist Synod was held by King Mindon. Inside the Kuthodaw Pagoda compound, the scripture was engraved on 729 slabs of marble and placed in individual pavilions. Besides, Muni Pagoda is the place for enshrining the Maha Muni image of approximately 4 meters high entirely covered with gold leaf. There are four walkways leading to the pagoda; each of them owns a distinctive character, resulting in different wares sold in shops. At the foot of Mandalay Hill, there stands Kyauk Taw Gyi Pagoda with Kyauk Taw Gyi’s giant statue carved from a single alabaster block. Unforgettable sunset sceneries, palace walls as well as the allure Ayeyarwady River can be observed on the terraced top of the hill.

Along the banks of Ayeyarwady River, the settings are stunning to watch with lush cornfields, bright red flowers of Lapan trees, precious heritages of Bagaya Kyaung Monastery and Nanmyin leaning tower. On the other hand, local lives are indeed attractive to observe and participate as villagers still maintain their hundreds-of-years routines. A typical example is what happens when the sun goes down around U Bein Bridge, the world longest teak bridge of nearly 200 years old. There are monks wearing long robe, men in longyi chewing betel, women carrying goods on their heads – their two cheeks are covered by Thanaka’s white powder. Absolutely, this scene will be a living and warm symbol of Mandalay in your memories.

Mandalay Tours

  •  Meditate in magical sunset over the world-famous Shwedagon pagoda
  •   Discover dried plain of Bagan and its ancient temples and pagodas
  •   Sail upstream Irrawaddy river to exotic temple of Kyuak Gu U Min
  •   Enjoy horse-cart ride around the immortal capital of Ava
  •   Explore amazing collection of Buddha images in Pindaya cave
  •   Get closer to tribal life and culture with a trek through Danu hill village
  •   Learn local technique to cultivate typical floating gardens on Inle Lake
  •   Unwind on pristine beach of Ngapali
Experiences :
Only From $2,697 $2,967
  •  Drive up and visit temple-topped Sagaing Hills
  •   Unfold the hidden history behind Mingun unfinished pagoda
  •   Take in windy sunset from top of Yankin hill
  •   Get back in time to Bagan's crumbling temples and pagodas
  •   Experience unique floating life upon serene Inle Lake
  •   Climb up and explore amazing Indein stupa jungle
Experiences :
Only From $1,067 $1,173
  •  Observe the old beauty of well-preserved colonial buildings
  •   Get deep in magical sunset over glistering Shwedagon pagoda
  •   Visit thousands ancient architectural temples in Bagan's plain
  •   Climb up the sacred mountain of Popa and enjoy the panoramic sceneries from the top
  •   Get amused with 8000 golden Buddha statues inside the limestone cave of Pindaya
  •   Relax and enjoy upon the scenic Inle Lake
Experiences :
Only From $1,589 $1,765
  •  Observe ornate beauty of legendary Shwedagon pagoda at night
  •   Uncover Bagan's historical secret with fine collection of old temples
  •   Walk along and wait for iconic sunset over U Bein bridge
  •   Gaze over beautiful landscape of Mandalay from Yankin Hill
  •   Learn how to make an exquisite Shan-style parasol
  •   Trek through hill villages and green plantations of Kalaw
  •   Try local floating life on Inle Lake
  •   Soak into crystal water of Ngwe Saung beach
Experiences :
Only From $3,021 $3,336
  •  Chill out with scenic boat trip to Mingun
  •   Enjoy peaceful sunset over Yankin hill
  •   Discover ancient kingdon of Bagan with thousands temples and pagodas
  •   Trek over Kalaw hill villages and observe their authentic tribal life
  •   Meander around the amazing stupa jungle of Shwe Indein pagoda
  •   Visit the most sacred Shwedagon Pagoda at sunset
Experiences :
Only From $1,640 $1,822
  •  Admire the mysterious sunset at magnificent Shwedagon pagoda
  •   Explore Mandalay's innate beaty
  •   Make a new river discovery from Mandalay to Bagan with Paukan cruise
  •   Uncover series of ancient monuments in Bagan archaeological zone
  •   Enjoy stress-free life on the picturesque Inle Lake
Experiences :
Only From $1,736 $1,928
  •  Observe the most notable Shwedagon pagoda gleaming over the sunset
  •   Uncover the ancient Bagan and its architectural and historical monuments
  •   Meander through quaint village of Minanthu
  •   Board in the Pandaw peaceful river cruise upstream the Irrawaddy from Bagan to Mandalay
  •   Catch up poetic sunset over U Bein bridge
  •   Experience hill tribal life and daily activities in Kalaw
  •   Visit floating Intha houses and colourful garden around Inle Lake
Experiences :
Only From $3,020 $3,322
  •  Meditate in the astounding sunset over Shwedagon pagoda
  •   Witness the famous fishing technique of leg-rowing fishermen on tranquil Inle lake
  •   Walk around the impressive stupa jungle in Shwe Indein pagoda
  •   Get to know deeply about culture, history and people of Bagan and Mandalay with The Strand downstream river cruise
  •   Taste out Myanmar and Asia various excellent cuisines on luxury board of Strand
  •   Gain excellent insights of traditional daily life around Minanthu village
Experiences :
Only From $2,669 $3,069
  •  Explore Yangon with its colonial British influence and the famous wonder of Shwedagon pagoda
  •   Visit of the significant series of ancient pagodas and temples in Bagan
  •   Savor stunning sunset in the traditional wooden U Bein bridge
  •   Contemplate massive unfinished Mingun pagoda and gigantic bell
  •   Experience local floating life in Inle Lake
  •   Uncover hidden jungle stupas in Indein
Experiences :
Only From $1,131 $1,326
  •  Discover Yangon's colonial buildings and world-famous Shwedagon pagoda
  •   Tour around ancient Bagan with thousands brick temples and pagodas
  •   Explore fine collection of mural paintings and beautiful Buddha images in Pho Win Taung pagoda
  •   Visit spiritual key sights around royal Mandalay
  •   Immerse in magical sunset over U Bein bridge
  •   Enjoy scenic boat trip to visit unfinished Mingun pagoda and gigantic bell
  •   Get more local senses in 5-day rotated floating market on Inle Lake
Experiences :
Only From $1,559 $1,730

Attractions In Mandalay

Amarapura
In Pali language, Amarapura means 'City of Immortality', established by King Bodawpaya of the...
Atumashi Monastery
Constructed in 1857 by King Mindon who moved the capital to Mandalay, Atumashi Monastery is great...
Ayeyarwaddy River
With a length of approximately 1350 miles (2,170 km), the Ayeyarwady River or Irrawaddy River is...
Gold leaf beating workshop in Mandalay
Myanmar is known as a golden country and gold is found everywhere, from the quarries to the temples...
Kuthodaw Paya
Referring to books, we often think of the white pages printed black ink. But perhaps few know that...
Kyauk Taw Gyi pagoda
Located at the foot of Mandalay Hill, Kyauktawgyi Pagoda was constructed from 1853 and completed in...
Mahagandaryone Monastery
Amarapura is known with the ancient Buddhist architecture bearing the stamp of history of Myanmar....
Mahamuni Buddha Temple
Lying in the south of Mandalay, Mahamunni Pagoda is a great and most revered pilgrimage destination...
Mandalay Hill
Situated in the northeast of Mandalay downtown, this 240 metre (790 ft) hill is the famous place of...
Mandalay Palace
Located in the heart of Mandalay city, Mandalay Palace was the first royal palace in here, built by...
Myae Swon village
When arriving to Mandalay, travelers will be attracted by the beautiful scenery and idyllic working...
Shwe Kyaung Monastery (Golden Palace)
Constructed entirely of teak wood in the mid-nineteenth century by King Mindon, Shwe Nandaw Kyaung...
U pein Bridge
The bridge is named after its builder U Bain who was the lord of the villages on the other side of...
Zegyo Market
Located at the heart of Mandalay and built during the reign of King Mindon, Zegyo Market is the...

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