- Location: Nyaung U, Bagan
- Recommended reason: The largest pagoda in the Bagan and one of the of the four most famous Buddhist pagodas in Myanmar
- Opening hours: 4:00-22:00
- Internet site: http://www.shwedagonpagoda.com
Shwezigon Pagoda is the founding tower and the prototype of the modern Buddhist pagoda in Myanmar. It is not only one of the four most famous Buddhist pagodas in Myanmar, but also the largest pagoda in Bagan. In addition, it is the only pagoda in stone with a long history in all pagodas of Bagan.
Shwezigon Pagoda facts:
The Shwezigon Pagoda is located in the west of Nyaung U Town and on the south bank of the Irrawaddy River. It was built from 1059 and completed in 1102. It is the oldest temple in Bagan. It is also the only stone-built pagoda in Bagan. It created the classic style of the Burmese pagodas. The Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon was built with reference to this style.
Shwezigon Pagoda is a square symmetrical structure. Its structure is that the center is a bell-shaped golden pagoda, the three-story square platform is the base. There is an octagonal platform that is connected with the pagoda above the base. This form became a model for many pagodas in Bagan.
The pagoda is surrounded by open-air walkways, countless small pagodas and pavilions. The walkway is surrounded by temples. There is a corridor of more than 100 meters as gateway. Shwezigon Pagoda is more than 40 meters high and is surrounded by 53 tall sculptures. There is a copper pavilion on each side of the pagoda. There is a beautiful Buddha standing in the pavilion.
How to visit Shwezigon Pagoda?
In Shwezigon Pagoda, there is a tooth and some bones of Buddha. Many local people come here to worship. Before coming to the pagoda, you need to take off your shoes and walk into a 100-meter long corridor. On the two sides of the corridor, there are many small traders who sell some handicrafts. Sometimes, you can meet several young monks dressed in red robes. At the end of the corridor, the names of the donors and the amount of donations are written on the walls.
Go out of the gallery, you can see Shwezigon Pagoda. It looks like a miniature version of the Shwedagon Pagoda of Yangon. There are many pigeons on the pagoda, which is peaceful. Every morning, many Buddhists come to pray here. The faces of devout Buddhists are impressive. The main part of pagoda is painted red with a layer of gold foil on the outside. The surrounding implements and sculptures are gold-plated. A small Buddhist temple on the southeast side of the pagoda enshrines the patron saints of 37 Bagan kingdoms. The whole temple is particularly bright in the afternoon.
There is also a small pool in front of the pagoda. You can see the reflection of the pagoda in the water. It is very interesting. In addition, there is a temple in beautiful mosaic tiles in the backyard of the pagoda. It is a good place to take a break. After sunset, the pagoda is more beautiful with many lights.
How to get to Shwezigon Pagoda?
a. There are 3 ways to get to Shwezigon Pagoda.
b. You can take a local carriage which costs about 20,000 kyats a day to Shwezigon Pagoda.
c. You can also rent a bicycle which costs about 1500 kyats a day to make a tour around Shwezigon Pagoda.
d. You can rent an 8-seat car which costs about 50,000 kyats a day.