bago01People who would like to have a look at historical site of Burma but do not have much time; the best place to go is Bago. It is 50miles north of Yangon and it is an hour drive. It is also a spot for Yangonites to go when they want to run away from their stressful daily routines and urban life. It used to be the kingdom of King Bayint Naung who was the founder of Myanmar Country.wqw King Bayinnaung was a monarch who had grand visions for himself.

He established the 2nd Myanmar Empire, which stretched from the borders of India to parts of Thailand and Laos, and was one of the most popular Myanmar kings. The Kanbawzathadi Palace was built in 1553, two years into his reign, to the south of the Shwemawdaw Paya.

The original palace consisted of 76 apartments and halls. It was burned down in 1599. It was reconstructed in 1990 and finished in 1992. Restoration of the Kanbawzathadi was completed in mid 2003. This included greening and beautifying of the Kanbawzathadi palace site, arrangements of the statues, sculptures and paintings to be kept bago02at the Archaeological Museum to be built and preparations for displaying the Mingala coach drawn by 16 horses during King Bayinnaung's time. It is highly expected that the grand gold palace can tell the stories of Myanmar great history.

Amusing anecdote about Bago is that house wives living in this area have influence in their husband. It is because of the legend. In the legend, Bago was just the ocean and there was no land except for a land which was just big enough for a bird’s perch. At that time a Sheldrake couple (Hinthar) who were 12 MYANMAR The Golden Land passing by this place got tired and searching for a place to rest.

They could not find any land except for the place which was just enough only for one of them. So the male bird decided to let his wife rested on top of him. People assume that it was a sign showing that in the future women from this place can manipulate their husbands. People had built a pagoda on the land believed to be rested by those two bago03birds (these days it is a hill calling Hinthargone) and it is called Hinthagone pagoda. These days the place is also famous in holing nat pewls (nat dancing). So if a person is lucky, he or she would have a chance to enjoy nat dancing performed by nat possessors.

Another famous pagoda in the town is Shwe-tha-laung (Reclining Buddha). In this pagoda, the image of the pagoda is in lying position. It is also a home to famous Shwemawdaw pagoda. The Shwemawdaw Paya was originally built around the tenth century, C.E. It was destroyed several times due to earthquakes, including one in 1917 and another in 1930. Portions of the fallen pre-1917 version of the Paya remain at the site. The original version of the pagoda was approximately 70 ft. tall, built by the Mon people and had two hairs of the Buddha.
Just out of the city is Kwanyin Chinese temple where one can ask his or her fate. Behind this temple is a garden with play ground for children. Items in this garden are made in the shape of vegetables with bright colours. It is also a popular picnic site for both local and visitors from other cities.

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