Monywa being the largest city of Sagaing Region says a lot about the scarce settlements of this region. It is actually a small-town in Myanmar, located around 136 kilometers north-west from Mandalay. As it is an industrial town, it is a bit different than other regional centers. It is more dynamic and holds some incredible sights around the city like highest standing Buddha or a pagoda holding more than 500000 Buddha statues. Unbelievable!

City’s riverfront is enjoyable to wander down, inside the downtown some lively markets can be found. For instance, between the clock tower and Bogyoke Aung San statue – the main street of the city – comes to life after dark. Creating a vibrant atmosphere where locals open various food stands and serve delicious food!

Travelers who visit this city must not miss the highest standing Buddha of the world, reaching length of 101 meters and a width of 18 meters. Inside there is a museum which presents the Great Chronicles of Buddha. On the way there, one more significant sight can be paid a visit – Thanboddhay Paya – holding 500 thousand Buddha images or possibly more!

Helpful tips

Restaurants. There are multiple places in the city where you can find descent food. In most of the local restaurants you will find price and quality ratio alright and food fresh. Stop by and try local food in street markets, look for a cleaner place and enjoy!

We enjoyed snacks and dishes in local Night market which occurs every day in one of the streets. Both food and price quality ratio are great there, just need to have faith and do not have high expectations or standards.

Markets. In Monywa as in almost every other city in Myanmar you will not easily find a lot of cheap souvenirs to put on your fridge. However, we encourage to walk around and look for hand made goods in local markets. Here they will charge you less the less you look like a tourist and if you know some simple Myanmar phrases, that will melt their hearts away. In shops all over city prices vary around same level, thus, choose a more convenient for you. We did not find a shop which would accept card payment, thus, be prepared and have some cash with you!

Transportation. To get to Monywa you can use car, bus, train or plane. We traveled to Monywa using hitchhiking from Mandalay. The roads are alright, some of them are under construction. We got lucky and stopped a car which drove us around the most amazing places near Monywa. Either way you choose, be aware that infrastructure is underdeveloped, roads are small and sometimes two-line road (one line each direction) is already considered as a highway. Traveling with trains between major cities are alright, however, if you plan to visit more remote areas, be prepared to spend some quality time in the process. So, at this point you must be able to enjoy the trip not only the destination.

Inside the city you will find yourself using local Tuk Tuk’s, taxies, bikes and scooters which are one of the most convenient transportation devices used to get around. However, exploration is doable on foot if you decide to skip on bike. Not the major objects which all mostly outside the city though.

Best of luck planning your holidays in Myanmar!

Is there anything else you would like to visit while in Myanmar?

If you have anything in mind, please let us know and let’s discuss it.

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