Wednesday, 25 February 2015 03:29

Amarapura was founded by King Bodawpaya in May 1783. When King Mindon began building Mandalay as his new capital, he dismantled a lot of buildings from Amarapura.  Despite this, the town still has a sense of history, with the famous U Bein Bridge, and ancient pagodas and monasteries dotted around a thriving silk and cotton cottage weaving industry.


Kyautawgyi Paya
Situated at the far end of U Bein Bridge; inside is a 900-tonne Buddha image carved from a single block of marble in 1865. There are also frescos on the walls and ceilings.


Amarapura Palace Ruins
Two masonry buildings remain of the palace - the treasury building and an old watchtower.  King Bagidaw and King Bodawpaya Tombs are also here, though their cremated ashes were put into velvet bags and placed in the river.


Shwe Gu Gyi Pagoda and Monastery
Inside this monastery are ruins of an ancient pagoda, and a small pagoda lined with frescos.


Aung Kyaw San Htar Pagoda
A delightfully eccentric pagoda with statues of tigers, turtles, and scorpions, a large reclining Buddha and a tall standing Buddha, and a building in the shape of an owl.


Pahtodawgyi Pagoda
Just outside the old city walls, this is modelled on the Mahazedi in Sri Lanka. The foundation was laid by King Bagyidaw in March 1820.  On the upper terrace are views of the countryside, and the lower terrace has marble slabs illustrating scenes from the Jataka.


Kyauksein (Jade) Pagoda
Currently being constructed out of 10,000 tonnes of  A, B, C & D quality jade.  The estimated cost will be around USD 10.3 million. U Soe Naing from jewellery trader Aye Aye Khaing had stockpiled the jade over the last 25 years to build the pagoda.


Maha Gandhayon Kyaung Monastery
A large monastery complex where hundreds of monks and nuns come to study.


Mahar Wai Yan Bon Thar Monastery
A five-storey building with a tiered roof decorated with over 28,000 carved wooden figures.  There is a museum which houses over 500 Buddha images and a library containing a rare collection of palm leaf manscripts.

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