Myanmar is a country well-known for its many golden Buddhist pagodas. The most famous and tallest one is the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon. It is said that no visit to Myanmar is complete without a paying a visit to Shwedagon Pagoda. Considered one of the wonders of the religious world, the magnificent Shwedagon was built on the Singuttara Hill located to the north of central Yangon, between People’s Park and Kandawgyi.
The pagoda itself is a solid brick Stupa (Buddhist reliquary) that is completely covered with gold. The total amount of gold placed on the tower in the temple and other places is up to 60 tons.
As the legend goes, two brothers were traveling when they encountered the Buddha beneath a tree. After feeding him, Buddha offered them a gift and gave them exactly eight hairs from his head. The brothers then carried the sacred hairs in a ruby casket back to their country where, with the help of the king, they began building what would become the Shwedagon Pagoda today. When making a visit, as other religious temples in Myanmar, remove your shoes before entering. Shwedagon Pagoda Road leads to the south entrance, and along with the north entrance, are the two locations where new lifts have been installed, added for those not feeling up to hiking the long stairways.
Its magnificent surface glitters brilliantly in the sun during the day, and glows almost magically amid spotlights at night. Shwedagon, a city highlight that you will never miss when traveling to this golden land country.
The Shwedagon Pagoda is a must-see if you are in Yangon, not only because it is of such cultural significance to the Burmese people, but also because its golden gleam is so visible across the city.
The Indochina Voyages team.