Monywa - One Day Is Not Enough
by Blake Johnson Jun 12, 2017
Located on the eastern bank of the Chindwin River, Monywa is one of the not-to-be-missed destinations for those who are Buddhism followers or admire the beauty of Buddha architecture. The highlight of Monywa is not really its town, but a number of interesting attractions in the surrounding countryside. So in this post we would like to recommend you some fascinating places and activities that you may be interested when visiting Monywa.
Not-to-be-missed Places to Visit in Monywa
Thanboddhay Pagoda was built in 1939 and finished in 1952. The entrance way is guarded by two huge white elephants. Inside, you will see Mr Tiger Balm's house, all of stone figures and a tall tower which only men are allowed to climb. Thanboddhay Pagoda is colorful and modern with hundreds of millions of Buddha statues and figurines. There are nearly 6 million statues in this pagoda. You may think that Thanboddhay is formed by these Buddha images.
Po Win Daung Caves
Po Win Daung Caves is a very interesting place for your visit to Monywa. More than 900 small caves form the artificial complex with a variety of carved sandstone Buddha statues and religious murals. Some caves are decorated beautifully outside. Some of them have a large number of ancient Buddha images. Besides, the wonderful mural paintings in vivid colors covering the walls of these caves depict Burmese life and the Lord Buddha stories. Po Win Daung Caves becomes one of the largest and most important archeological sites in Monywa.
Bodhi Tahtaung Pagoda
This name means "1000 Buddhas". It is because of that Bodhi Tahtaung Pagoda has 1000 Bodhi trees and each tree has a large Buddha image underneath. Especially, on the range of hills Po Khaung Taung lying east of this pagoda, there is a 91-meter reclining Buddha image, which is the largest one in the world. This huge statue has a hollow cave-like structure inside, so you can walk from head to toes.
Laykyun Setkyar Standing Buddha
Laykyun Setkyar Standing Buddha is also located on Po Khaung Taung hills, just behind the the reclining Buddha. It was built by Bodhi Tahtaung Sayadaw (known as a venerable monk). Like the reclining Buddha, this standing image has a hollow cave-like structure. You can climb by stairs to see the panoramic view of the surrounding areas.
Shwe Gu Ni Pagoda
Shwe Gu Ni Pagoda is about 32 kilometers to the east of Monywa. The 33-meter high Buddha image in the pagoda is offered by gold foils. So the Buddha's original face is difficult to see after a thick-covered of gold. You can visit this pagoda on the occasion of festival, which is held in May each year with a large number of locals joining.
Shwe Ba Hill
Located on the west bank of Chindwin River, Shwe Ba Hill houses a lot of caves and temples which are carved from the surrounding volcanic rocks and filled with old Buddha images. You will see huge white elephant, row of standing Buddha images and decorated pavilions when walking through narrow cliffs leading down by stone stairs.
A visit to Monywa will certainly make you satisfied and relax with attractive scenes as well as the peaceful atmosphere and the hospitability of the locals. Getting in beautiful Monywa is easy, but getting out is more difficult, just because of that you don't want to leave out. Actually, one day is not enough in Monywa.
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