Irrawaddy — the main river of Myanmar. It is all, the largest transport route, the water source for the rice fields, and the object of worshipping.
In Myanmar, there are pagodas at every step.
They build them not for mercantile reasons, but for the purpose of improvement of their karma. This is their way to pray for forgiveness of their sins. The more sins, the taller should be the stupa. This is why, the biggest pagodas were built on the orders of the most cruel and treacherous kings, that were in blood up to the elbow.
The City of Ava, known also as Inva, was founded in the 14th century, at the confluence of the Myinge River with the Irrawaddy River. Up to the year of 1824, it was the capital of Burma and occupied an extensive territory. Only separate ruins remained until now — widely spaced from each other.
On the opposite bank of the Irrawaddy River, in 1824, the city of Mandalay was founded. It was the capital of Burma, during the period of history when the country was being gradually developed by the English colonialists.
Mandalay - the spiritual capital of Myanmar. It is exactly here, where the most highly esteemed Buddha's statue is kept — Buddha Mahamuni or the Great Wiseman.
One more holy site - the Hill of Mandalay. A stone stairway of 999 steps, leads to its top.
11 km from Moniwa, in the 1930's, they built the temple complex of Mohnin Thambudha, occupying the territory of 15 hectares. The main temple - Sambudkh Kat Kiyav - is filled with Buddhas of all types and sizes: from tiny 10-centimeter ones up to 2-3-meters high. They were all counted. According to these exact calculations, there are 582 363 of them here. They possibly planned to reach a million, but there wasn't enough money or persistence.
In the religious complex Laykiun Setkyar, there are much fewer statues. But what kind! The standing Buddha is 116 meters, the lying is slightly smaller - only 90. The gilded stupa, standing at the bottom of the hill, looks tiny. But it is as high as a nine-storey house.
Bagan — one of the main tourist destinations not only of Myanmar, but also of all Indochina. The ruins of the ancient city occupy a triangle of about fifty square kilometers, on the bend of Irrawaddy river.
The State of Shang — one of the national regions of Myanmar. The primary population here are not Burmans, but Shanas. Part of them continues to conduct armed battles, in honor of the creation of their independent state. Huge territories of the Shang State, still remain out of control of the central government. Only the triangle between Khalo, Pindaya and Inle lake, is open for tourists.
Narration was done by Frederic Moretti ([email protected]