Shwedagon Pagoda is quite a walk from my hostel, but I will dedicate my day to it so I have plenty of time to walk. It was a 40 min walk but besides being a big city Yangon isn’t chaotic. It’s ok to walk.
Before getting to Shwedagon Pagoda I cross Dorgah Of Second Bahadur Shah that looks very imponent so I also need to visit it. Shwedagon is one of the most important temples for Buddhists of Myanmar and the complex it’s huge! It’s truly a must visit in Yangon, but you need to pay a fee to enter. You can spend hours here. There are so many pagodas to see!! I wasn’t expecting this place to be even more golden than the rest of Myanmar. There are dozens of different architectural styles and different temples to appreciate. So, to analyze carefully each one you need to spend hours in this place.
-Shwedagon Pagoda is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda in Myanmar, as it is believed to contain relics of the four previous Buddhas. According to legend, the Shwedagon Pagoda was constructed more than 2,600 years ago, which would make it the oldest Buddhist stupa in the world. Shwedagon Pagoda is covered with hundreds of gold plates and the top of the stupa is encrusted with 4531 diamonds; the largest of which is a 72-carat diamond. You can see it through the binoculars that are strategically placed in a way that you can admire the tip-top of this massive Golden Pagoda.-
There is also a museum inside the complex and a lot of things are going on. There is some kind of celebration that I have no idea what it is for. Several people form a line and there is a child that is carried on the lap, very adorn, in the middle of the crowd. I guess it might be some very important ritual. There were cameras filming what is happening that’s why I get this conclusion.
The Burmese seem to spend a lot of time in there. There were people eating, people sleeping, people praying… It’s a great spot to see how Burmese live.
Another strange ritual that I also didn’t figure out is the floor cleaning. At some point, there was a lot of people gathering in a horizontal line and all the sudden they were starting to sweep the floor at the same time and the same rhythm. That was strange but I also bet it is something important. You might be approached for some gentle guides inside the complex, but I wanted to spend the time on my own and my own rhythm. If I have been with a guide, now I would understand these rituals and have a better idea of how important this place is for the Burmese. I pity that I didn’t.
Shwedagon pagoda is an impressive complex of pagodas and you must pay it a visit!