Interesting Facts About Myanmar's Holiest Buddhist Shrine - the Shwedagon Pagoda
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Interesting Facts About Myanmar's Holiest Buddhist Shrine - the Shwedagon Pagoda

Here are some notable facts about the Shwedagon Pagoda.

The magnificent-looking Shwedagon Pagoda, which is also known as the Golden Pagoda, is located in Singuttara Hill in Yangon, Myanmar. This famous Buddhist shrine is officially titled Shwedagon Zedi Daw.

Here are some notable facts about this religious edifice.


1.) This amazing wonder of Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, is a 98-meter gilded stupa that dominates Yangon’s skyline.

2.) Shwedagon Pagoda is regarded as the most sacred Buddhist pagoda in all of Myanmar. It contains relics of the past four Buddhas – the staff of Kakusandha, the water filter of Konagamana, a piece of the robe of Kassapa and 8 hairs of Gautama, the historical Buddha.

3.) The gold seen on the stupa is made of genuine gold plates that came from the donations of Myanmar people from all over the country and from monarchs in its history.

4.) One important thing a tourist should remember when visiting the shrine is to remove his shoes before the first step at any of the entrances because a “no footwear or socks policy” is strictly implemented.

5.) The Shwedagon Pagoda is believed to be 2,500 years old according to legend but archeologist believe that the shrine is 1,400 years old.


6.) Based on the records of Buddhist monks, the Shwedagon Pagoda was built before Gautama Buddha died in 486 BCE coinciding with age according to legend.

7.) During the 14th century the stupa is only 18 meters tall. From 1453 to 1472 it was raised to 40 meters. The stupa was rebuilt many times until it reached its current height of 98 meters in the 18th century.

8.) This attractive Buddhist shrine started to become the most popular place of pilgrimage in Burma during the 16th century.

9.) When one enters the shrine, a pair of giant leogryphs called clinthe or mythical lions can be seen at the entrances.

10.) The plinth or base of this marvelous stupa is made of bricks covered with gold plates and only monks and men can access the terraces located above the base.

11.) The astounding umbrella or crown called “hti” is tipped with 5,448 diamonds and 2,317 rubies.

12.) The very top, the diamond bud called “sein bu” is tipped with a 76 carat diamond making the Shwedagon Pagoda more magnificent.

13.) Majority of Myanmar citizen are Buddhist who believes in astrology and it is very important for them to recognize the day of their birth for them know which part of pagoda platform to go and make special devotional acts.

14.) If a person wants to avoid bad luck and misfortune, he must pour water at one’s planetary post and he will be ensure of peace of mind and all anxieties will end.

15.) Portuguese plundered the shrine in 1608 and took the 300 ton Great Bell of Dhammazedi to be melt down to make cannons but fell into the river.


16.) In 1824, another bell, the 23-ton bronze bell called Maha Gandha Bell, was carried off by the British with the intention to ship it to India also met the same fate as the Dhammazedi Bell and fell into the river.

17.) There are no entrance fees at the Shwedagon Pagoda. However, there are donation boxes around and all donations are voluntary. Pilgrims can make whatever donation they choose and may even make none if they wish.

See also

Amazing Facts About Indonesia’s Architectural Pride – the Borobudur
Interesting Facts About the World’s Largest Religious Building – the Angkor Wat
Interesting Facts About the Most Important Icon of the Inca World – Machu Picchu
Interesting Facts About the Greatest Work of Roman’s Architecture and Engineering - the Colosseum





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Comments (3)

Amazing archetecture.

Another very interesting and informative article with fabulous pictures, Norbert.

Another HIT article Nobert, thanks.