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Mandalay

Fascinating Facts

  • Mandalay is the last royal capital of Myanmar, founded in 1857 by King Mindon based on a dream. The British conquered Mandalay in 1885, marking the end of monarchy in Myanmar.
  • Mandalay is the country’s cultural capital. With its amazing wooden palace and pagoda-studded Mandalay Hill, the city will awe you.
  • Mandalay is also an important religious centre of the country, housing around 700 Buddhist pagodas.

Mandalay, the second largest city in Myanmar, was established in 1857. Mandalay is located in central Myanmar, on the eastern bank of Ayeyarwady River. This city, named after Mandalay Hill has been a matter of fantasy for people over the ages and has been named in renowned literary works such as the poem ‘Mandalay’ written by Rudyard Kipling, the song ‘On the road to Mandalay’ written by Oley Speaks and George Orwell’s novel ‘Burmese Days’.

The Mandalay as seen today is Myanmar’s blooming cultural centre and one of the country’s best religious sites that display astonishing masonry and architecture. The city is Myanmar’s major commercial, education and health centre and has been ranked as the fifth on the ASEAN Smart Cities Network list. Witness the unique blend between modern development and ancient history when you visit Mandalay.

History

King Mindon established a new royal capital surrounded by 4 rivers at the foot of Mandalay Hill in February 1857. The construction was intended to fulfil a prophecy in which a Buddhism metropolis was to be built at the exact location where the 2,400th jubilee of Buddhism took place. The city grew as a strong capital city for 26 years before being conquered by the British Empire, establishing the Mandalay we see today as the last royal capital city of the Konbaung Dynasty. Mandalay city was heavily affected by the Second World War but the royal mint and watch tower survived the damages.

HOW TO GET THERE

Top Attractions

Mandalay is a large city, dotted with plenty of amazing tourist destinations that will surely make you fall in love with this city. Explore the monasteries and temples which reveal the best of the country’s ancient architectural designs. Many of these places are places of worship for the local and international devotees. Hence, this will be a unique opportunity for you to get a first-hand experience of the religious setup of the country. Enjoy the sight of monks in traditional holy robes walking along roads packed with modern vehicles when you visit any monasteries near the hill. Mandalay Hill is also an ideal destination to experience the scenic sunrise or sunset with the entire city as the backdrop. The view from the hilltop is amazing. They will give you the best Instagram photo opportunities. There’s more! Walk on the world’s longest wooden bridge at U Bein bridge, located about a 20 minutes drive away from the city. If you’re up for a great shopping session, head to the famous 42nd Street Jade Market and be spoiled for choice as you walk along the market. You will get the best