Mrauk U–An ideal place for archaeological discovery in Myanmar | Cruise Mekong River

Mrauk U–An ideal place for archaeological discovery in Myanmar

Mrauk U – a dreamlike state

It must be unforgettable discovery for you if you ever travel to Mrauk U in Myanmar. Mrauk U contains many elements that create a memorable trip, such as an ancient kingdom with impressive ruins, a lively local culture as well as interesting Chin tribal villages that can be visited in a long but worthwhile day trip.

Mrauk U – a dreamlike state

Mrauk U – a dreamlike state

Mrauk U is an archaeologically important town in northern Rakhine State. This was an epoch that began back in 1430 and stretched until 1785. The town of Mrauk U is located not far from the Kaladan River, roughly 11 km from the east of river, on the banks of its minor tributaries. Lakes, mangroves and marshes decorate the scenic landscape, which is very pretty indeed. Mrauk U holds considerable historical significance; it is one of the most important places for archaeologists with the temple ruins in the area. While Bagan has the greatest volume of temples, Mrauk U has the quality and soul, which makes Mrauk-U become special.

Shitthaung Temple

The Shitthaung Temple whose name means “Temple of 80,000 Images of Buddha” or “Temple of victory” located about half a mile to the north of the palace site was built by one of the most powerful kings of the Mrauk-U Dynasty, called by the people, Minbargyi, but according to records on inscriptions as King Minbin in 1935 for celebration of his military victory over Bengal. The skill and art displayed in its construction and ornamentation are remarkable. Read more: mekong river cruise

Shitthaung Temple

Shitthaung Temple

At first glance, Shitthaung is not unlike other Buddhist temples, with the trademark bell-shaped stupa augmented by smaller stupas, and over even smaller stupas still. However, many people remarked that the Shitthaung Temple was built alike a fortress because of its maze-like layout. The real purpose of the pagoda was for prayer, some rituals of initiation, and some of the King’s ceremonies, which were usually held secretly.

Koethaung Temple

Standing on a plain of rice fields is the Koethaung Pagoda whose 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. Like the Shitthaung, this pagoda is also a massive fortress-like structure built with stone walls and terraces. There is an octagonal pagoda in the middle surrounded by over one hundred smaller pagodas made of sandstone.

Koethaung Temple

Koethaung Temple

Htukkanthein Temple

This is also a well-known temple at Mrauk U. The name, believe it or not, is the “Cross-Beam Ordination Hall.” Htukkanthein is both a temple and a fortress; this same dual use design can be said for most of the Buddhist temples at Mrauk U. It is located about 300 feet to the north-west of Shitthaung Pagoda. It was constructed on high ground with two stone stair ways on the east and south and there is only one entrance. Read more: Treval to Cambodia

Htukkanthein Temple

Htukkanthein Temple

The Buddha sculptures here are beautiful to say the least. A meditation room inside is an ideal spot to appreciate the 180 Buddha images housed in the temple’s three chambers. Archeological signatures can be seen here, signified by female and male figurines, dedicated to the “donors” who made the temple’s construction possible.

Htukkanthein Temple interior

Htukkanthein Temple interior

The Indochina Voyages team.

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