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Mrauk U is the only site in Myanmar where there is an assemblage of many stone buildings. The Rakhing king Minzawmon founded Mrauk-U in1433. A Deutsch man who visited Mrauk-U in the 16th century described it as one of the richest cities in Asia, and compared with Amsterdam and London in size and prosperity. Tour highlight include Kothaung Temple; it is the thousand of small Buddha bas-reliefs on the walls of which make the temple so interesting, Sakyamanaung Stupa, the bells reverts to a layered circular shape which is mounted a decorative umbrella, Mahabodi Shwegu Stupa; scenes from Jataka line( the past lives of Buddha have 550 Stories.) the inner side of the passage, and Pitakateik; Buddhist library, the monument's most distinguishing features are its five tiered roofline and beautifully.
The unique characteristics of the topography of Mrauk U are the tiers of hills and mountains running around it. Between them are natural passes through which access is easy. These natural passes were fenced with earth walls and stone walls thus forming a long line of defence walls aligned with hills and mountains. Between hills and mountains where the location was favorable, big dams and reservoirs were built to store water as well as to serve as water barriers (Kyon Pinlei). Water gates and sluices were installed systematically so that water flow could be regulated to supply water for public consumption and to rush it out to repulse the invaders. Even to day Mrauk U municipality enjoys the benefit of the water storage system of the old days. We cannot help but utter words of admiration and appreciation and express thanks to King Minbin of the Golden Period of Mrauk U for his farsightedness and ingenuity in town planning and defence system for future generations to enjoy welfare and security.
All along the hills and mountain ranges where there were strategic and main entries and existence of rivers and creeks, fortresses were built into the natural surroundings. At present "Kyaung Lei Don" Fortress of stone in its original condition can be witnessed to the northeast of "Ko Thaung Pahto Daw Gyi Pagoda".
Temples Of Maurk U
Htukkan (or Dukkhan), the temple stands on a hill, 30 feet high, having a flat surface like that of a drum. King Minphalaung built the pagoda in 1571 A.D. Like the Shitthaung and the Andaw shrines, Dukkhanthein was built of hewn sandstones and layers of bricks over the roof. It measures 190 feet from north to south and 200 feet from east to west. It is reached by stone stairways, 8' broad, situated on the east and south. These stairways measuring 106 feet are built of massive stonewalls on t he north, east and south. The west one which is slightly convex is connected to an oblong chamber.
Standing on a plain of rice fields is the Koethaung Pagoda; the name means 90,000 and probably signified the number of Buddha images it was supposed to contain. It was built by King Min Taikkha, the son of King Min Bin who built the Shitthaung or temple of 80,000 images, so the son exceeded the father by 10,000! It is the biggest pagoda in the Mrauk-U area. Like the Shitthaung, this pagoda is also a massive fortress-lik e structure built with stone walls and terraces. There are 108 smaller pagodas surrounding it, all made of sandstone. With a winding corridor it is like a cave tunnel which you have to traverse until yo u reach the central chamber. The inner gallery has collapsed and is no longer accessible. There is an octagonal pagoda in the middle surrounded by over one hundred smaller pagodas. Unlike some of the other temples, not only sandstone, but bricks were also used in this pagoda.
About a distance of 150 feet to the northwest of the Dukkhanthein Pagoda is the Laymyetnha Pagoda or "the fourfacaded pagoda". King Minsawmon, the first king of Mrauk-U Dynasty, built it in 1430 A.D. It is one of the five pagodas built at the beginning of the establishment of the city. It is a square structure, with a long protruding portal towards each cardinal point. The interior room is octagonal. In the center of the latter there is an octahedral column intended to support the circular tower erected over the center of the roof. Over each of the four corners of the terrace a smaller circular stupa was built. Each side of the square of the shrine measures 55'; the portals are 13' broad and protrude 17' into the platform.
The central tower is circular and has the shape of a dome, with a circumference of 80 feet at the base and is 70 feet high. There are 28 Buddha images as mentioned in the Sambuddha scripture.
This port city of the Rakhine State sits at the mouth of the Kaladan River where it empties into the Bay of Bangal. Off shore delta islands form a wide protected channel that has served as an important harbour for many centuries. The city started as a trading port around 200 years ago and further developed after the British occupation of 1826. International trade alone the coast bloomed during the British era. Two huge cargo steamers a day plied back and forth between Calcutta and Sittwe. Scottish short-storywriter and novelist Hector Hugh Munro, known by his pen name ‘Saki’, was born here in 1870. There is a distinctive Rakhine twist on standard Myanmar culture that includes the enjoyment of much spicy food and brighter-coloured clothing.
How to Get To Mrauk U
About ten years ago it was difficult to travel to this area but you can easily visit Mrauk-U now. From Yangon there are daily flights to Sittway the capital of Rakhine State. From Sittway to Mrauk-U you can take a boat on the Kaladan River and then go into some of its tributary streams. Mrauk-U, on Thinghanadi creek is only 45 miles from Sittway and the sea coast. It is a very pleasant river journey.Ancient Dynasty Of Mrauk U .
Where To Stay
Nyaungpin Market Maruk U
Ph: 01 - 220649, 220630, 043-24601
Prince Guest House
Myaungbwe Rd: Ah-le-zay Qr:
Maruk U Hotel
Yangon Sittway Rd.
Ph : 043-23060 Mrauk U, Rakhine State
Tel : MU-146