Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Sounds like a bit of a tautology, doesn't it? I suppose Burmese tourists can browse these chambers and feel that the ol' junta's shenanigans feel comparatively light-hearted; the rest of us can admire the craftsmanship and twisted imagination of artists that created this monument! Big thanks for all the beautiful photos to Peri Beller, the photographer; pictures were donated to Asiahell blog by her fellow traveler (in Burma and life!) MATS?! (whose blog http://matstuff.blogspot.com/2010/07/new-burma-tee-shirt-design.html you absolutely MUST check out, if only to snag some of those excellent Burma T-shirts before they're gone!!!)
Alright, so here are some technical details:
Reclining Buddha - Win Sein Taw Ya
The largest reclining Buddha image in the world, Win Sein Taw Ya, is situated about 20 km south of Mawlamyine on the main road to Mudon. It can be clearly seen for miles as you leave Mudon for Mawlamyine on the right side of the road in amongst the hills almost directly opposite the hill top Buddhist shrine of Kyauktalon Taung. The reclining Buddha is 180 meters in length, and 30 meters in height. Inside there are numerous rooms with dioramas of the teachings of Buddhism, similar to Haw Par Villa (Tiger Balm Gardens) of Singapore. There is also a Buddhist shrine in one of the rooms, and being a place of worhship, you should remove your shoes or slippers before entering the premises. Construction is expected to be completed in 2008, however, the site is currently open to the public and attracts many visitors throughout the day. Be aware however, that it is still a construction site so your decision to enter the reclining Buddha is done at your own risk.Getting there: The entrance to the reclining Buddha image is located about 100 meters south of the Hindu temple on Yadana Taung on the left hand side of the Mawlamyine-Mudon road as you head towards Mudon. You'll see a school on the corner of the road that leads to the the Buddha image as well as statues of 100 monks standing in single file with alms bowl in hand. It's a convenient stopover if you're heading to Kyaikkami, Setse beach, the Death Railway museum or the Htaukkyant War Cemetry in Thanbyuzayat.