The Sule Pagoda, an over 2500-year-old Mon style octagonal golden pagoda, is situated in the center of Yangon, at the junction of Sule Pagoda Road and Mahabandoola Road, Kyauktada Township, Yangon. It occupies the center of the city and considered as a strategic location of Burmese politics, ideology and geography.
Coming to the pagoda, the travelers can gaze with he original Indian structure of the stupa which initially was used to replicate the form and function of a relic mound. However, from time to time, as Burmese culture became more and more independent of its South Indian influences, the local architectural forms began to change the shape of this place. Until now, it has been renovated and enlarged several times. Some features were changes, including the dome structure, topped with a golden spire, extends into the skyline, marking the cityscape.
There are four entrances to the pagoda which are topped with multi tiered Pyatthat roofs provide access to the Sule grounds. The tourists can see the images of Hintha bird which are the symbol of Bago on the grounds. The birds symbolize the captivity of the Burmese people endured for centuries and that releasing them is a symbol of hope for the continued peace and freedom of the local people here.
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From Sule Pagoda, the tourists can see and enjoy the cityscape and watch city life go by. To explore and understand more about the pagoda, the travelers can hire a guide who can explain about the pagoda’s history and Buddhist belief and rituals . The fee for this service is about USD5 to USD10 depending on the tourists’ bargaining negotiation ability.
There are a number of small Buddha statues decorated with flowers and water bowls on the perimeter of Sule Pagoda. One interesting feature is that at the foot of each Buddha is an animal statue which signifies the individual day of the Burmese Zodiac. The Burmese Zodiac pairs a day of the week to the Gods of Burmese animist tradition as Monday (Tiger), Tuesday (Lion), Wednesday (Elephant), Thursday (Rat), Friday (Guinea Pig), Saturday (Naga) and Sunday (Garuda). The travelers always search Sule Pagoda to find their given animals which corresponds to the day on which they were born.
Besides, there are many wonderful places surrounding this pagoda as the lofty Independence Pillar in the Maha Bandoola Park, the Immanuel Church, the colonial era buildings like the Supreme court building and Yangon city hall, the High Court Buildingsof traditional style. and major thoroughfares from different directions making a circuit around Sule Pagoda hillock.
At night, the tourists can discover many wonderful things around this pagoda. They can go to Independence Monument and Park to enjoy night dancing fountains, lighting and exciting local life.
How to get to Sule Pagoda
Sule Pagoda welcomes the visitors from 6 am to 10 pm everyday. And the entrance fee is USD3 per person. It takes about halfway between the central railway station and the Yangon river. Therefore, it is found in the center of a roundabout on the junction of Sule road and Maha Bandula road.
The guests have to put their shoes on shelves which are near the entrance before entering the grounds.
» Source: Myanmar tour packages