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Why Mandalay Hill is special ?
The city's name is derived from this hill, which, at nearly 800 feet, can seem a lot more like a mountain when you're schlepping up it on a 100-degree day. For those unable to make the climb, there's an elevator as well as a road to an escalator that leads up to the gilded Sutaungpyei Pagoda at the top of the hill. Burmese Buddhists have been coming here for nearly two centuries, paying their respects, and you'll still see monks here, mostly sweet teenage boys who are eager to chat with visitors and practice their (already quite good) English. On the way up, you'll see a giant standing Buddha, his right hand pointing to the city. Legend has it that when Buddha visited Mandalay Hill, he prophesied that in the year 2400 (Buddhist calendar), a "great city" would be founded at the bottom of the hill. In the Gregorian calendar, that year is 1857, exactly when King Mindon decreed that Mandalay would be Burma's new capital. Sunset over Mandalay is best viewed from the top of the hill, and the climb can take 40 minutes, so give yourself plenty of time. Bring wet wipes to clean off your feet.
What to explore at Mandalay Hill?
The Mandalay Hill is situated to the north-east corner of the Mandalay Royal Palace. It lies from north to south, its altitude being 236.5m above sea level and its height going up to 167.64m.
The Mandalay Hill is surrounded by the nine satellite hills called the Shwe Taung ( The Golden Hill), the Ngwe Taung ( the Silver Hill ), the Paddamya Taung ( the Ruby Hill ), the Hse-dan Taung ( the Hill of Arsenious trisulphide), the Myin Thila Taung ( the Hill of Arsenic trisulphide ), the Dokhta Hill ( the Hill of Blue vitriol), the Ye-hle Taung ( the Hill of Whirling Water), the Kye-ni Hill ( the Copper Hill ) and the Baluma Taung ( the Hill of the Ogress ). The third is called the Paddamya Taung since a ruby was some time ago found in that hill lying to the north west; the seventh one, the Ye-hle Taung since, in the rainy season, the rain water whirled first and flowed down like a funnel in the hill to east; and the ninth hill, the Baluma Taung, since it was believed that the Ogress Sanda Mukhi made her abode in the small hill near to the western passageway.
One famous Buddha Image on the Mandalay Hill is the Image of Standing Lord Buddha at the top of the hill where Lord Buddha made a prophesy. It was built by king Mindon. Eight years after the king’s death, the image was damaged by fire, and a new image was restored. The image of standing Lord Buddha is 8.22m high.
There are two one-way bus roads up to the top of the Mandalay Hill, one to the west of the Great Lions statues winding up the way and the other at the southern passageway going down.
There are four stairways going up the Mandalay Hill, two on the north and on the west, and two on the south.
The southern covered passage with the Two Great Lions on Haungches is the most frequently used by pilgrims. There exists the Museum of the Hermit U Khanti at the head of the passageway, which was built in honour of the benevolent hermit who first pioneered to develop the plans of building religious edifices and memorials on the Mandalay Hill. Near the archway ascending the southern passage is located the Shrine of the Guardian Spirit, known as Mandalay Bo Gyi, where the natives of Mandalay often come and make offerings. The iron statues of the two snakes are well known to the visitors of Mandalay. An elevator and an escalator are also in service for going up the hill.
Like a Tower given by nature, the Mandalay Hill offers a panoramic view over the Golden City of Mandalay. One can take a sweeping view towards the Yan Kin Hill, not far from it, the Sagaing hill and the Min Wun Ranges and the glimmering Ayeyawaddy and the Shan Yoma ranges at a far distance.
It will be a memorable experience for the visitor of Mandalay to enjoy the sunset beauty over the blinking, winding Ayeyawaddy and the blue Sagaing Hill and the Min Wun ranges.
- Top hill pagoda
- Good spot for sunset
- Nice view & standing Buddha
- Great views of Mandalay
- A place-should-go in Mandalay
Mandalay Myanmar (Burma)
Tips for you
walking barefoot, not for wimps! Lots of stalls selling tourist tat on the way, but not forceful. Lots of well educated knowledgeable people around, offering information. Worth a thousand kyat (£1) to have the information in English
Great place to enjoy the sunset. Also, as of Oct 2013 the camera fee is 1000 kyat. It's well worth it.